Three years of partnership. Commitment. Friendship. Learning. Adapting. And loving without condition.
Three years ago I made this man pinky promise me
that our partnership would be his first priority, he’d be open and honest with me about everything, and that he’d never settle for complacency no matter what.
This year we celebrated a bit early with a weekend getaway. We stayed at the Renaissance Hotel downtown for the rooftop pool.
Some friends joined us for a few evening hours of poolside cocktails and hot tubbing.
(not pictured: J and Rebecca)
we also enjoyed sleeping in as late as we wanted in the mornings! You know- like 8am. Keithy brought me Starbucks fufu and breakfast-in-bed each morning, and we took a stroll through the city on our Saturday afternoon.
I feel very fortunate in this life to have the husband and the family and the love that I do. To be able to hold and be held, and to have someone to cry with and laugh with and lean on… to have small squishy cheeks to kiss and tiny hands to hold, and a future to look forward to.
I love my husband more than words can say. I am forever grateful for our partnership and friendship, and I am so happy to have a daughter together! I feel entirely fortunate that this is my life and that I get to spend it with him.
OMG. Jack Johnson ‘Better Together’… I just can’t think of a better song that reminds me of Keithy and of falling in love with him.
When we were dating he worked restaurant hours (late nights) and I worked first shift hours (early mornings), so we struggled to find time here and there to spend together. I’d often don my most glam flannel pajamas and drive to his place to see him when he got off work, only 4 or so hours before *I* had to be UP for work. I’d be exhausted. He’d put his “sleep music mix” on for me and we’d talk for a minute, or if I was too sleepy he’d just tell me a story. Inevitably Jack Johnson would come on and I’d drift off to sleep in the crook of Keith’s arms to his chest resonance while he sang along.
When I hear this song… just instant calm. I feel loved. I feel incredibly fortunate. I feel so in love! I get to fall asleep in Keith’s arms the rest of my life. I can’t think of anything better than that.
Dating may not have been easy or glamorous. Marriage may not be easy or glamorous. But with Keith it’s sweet and intimate and the best thing that I could have ever hoped for. Not a day goes by that I’m not thankful I married him.
“I actually look you over every time I leave for work in the morning. It’s good motivation. ‘This… this is my beautiful bride. This is why I’m going to work. So I can get better and bring her happiness.’ It’s an incredible feeling.” ~Keith, September 2013
Although our plans fell through, we were happy to celebrate our first anniversary last month.
The weekend of our anniversary my dad, Matt, and J headed to Mohican to stay in cabins, mountain bike, etc. to celebrate J’s 21st. Keith, Adry, and I decided to join for a day.
Boys will be boys.
J frolicking in the woods to his birthday cabin
Adry helped unpack the truck.
Birthday Gut Punches
I guess they decided that Adry has a new tagline. “What is going ON!?”
PHOTO CREDIT: Engagement photos by my dad, Mr. Tim Sanders. 2012
I know it’s early, but I’ve been so excited to celebrate me and Keith’s One Year Anniversary.
We have our cake topper in the freezer, and time and money set aside for a few nights’ local getaway and hopefully hot-tubbing, cocktailing, and rooftop pool swimming at the Renaissance here in Columbus.
I’m not going to lie, Keithy and I are awesome together. I somehow was fortunate enough to find the one-in-a-million who fits me perfectly. Our flaws and strengths come together like puzzle pieces to make a complete picture; I fill in the spaces he’s missing and vice-versa. I wrote in our couple’s journal back in May: “I think one reason Keith and I make such a great partnership is that I’m detail-oriented (and need help focusing on the big picture) and Keithy is big-picture oriented and has trouble with all the details along the way. We compliment each other very well that way. Even with the little things. The other day Keith put together his resume and wrote it so articulately… words just flow from him so freely while I struggle to describe simple things. He let me edit his draft and I tweaked it up– condensed it, sharpened it up, corrected the alignment and a few tense-changes and things like that… We are kind of like that in our marriage, and I think we work beautifully that way.”
I am so proud of us. Not because we are perfect, but because we’ve had a lot to overcome. We still have plenty to work on, but we’ve come a long way since we met each other. I’m so glad and forever thankful for our resiliency. We’ve learned so much about each other and how we work best together, and we continue to learn. I think that’s one of the keys to a happy joyful marriage: openness and willingness to learn and adapt. Also, 100% HONESTY, absolute TRASPARENCY, and approachable and understanding dispositions… which can all be summed up in one word: communication.
-that we can be dorky and silly with each other. We break out in random dances, have gibberish discussions in grocery store aisles, and flirt endlessly
-how easily we laugh together
-getting daily love letters and reminders of how much I’m cared for
-how we support each other, encourage each other, and cheer each other on
-seeing Keith thrive at and enjoy all of his artistic endeavors and hobbies (his novel-writing, song-writing, singing, tattoo-designing, and cooking)
-the theology, philosophy, and science discussions we have– that we can have intelligent and stimulating conversations
-BEING in love. the best feeling
-the security and comfort of being a family forever. all three of us. and knowing I have two awesome boys at home to love, and who love me in return
I am excited to celebrate US. Our marriage, our love, our family. I love you, Husband Bravo!
Later in the night, after our fist dance, it was time to cut the cake!
Of course, since cutting the cake is a seriously important event lyke omigawdI had to have a very serious discussion with Keith beforehand… which made him laugh at me.
And I was all no no no no, you don’t understand. That whole vow thing? That was just a formality. You could have had your fingers crossed. We suspect certain ex-husbands had THEIRS crossed. You have to repeat all your vows (it is permissible to paraphrase), then PINKY PROMISE ME and then seal it with the cake cutting! So he put on his serious face.
He repeated his vows and pinky-promised on it.
SIDE STORY: And this is going to sound all mopey but it’s totally not- I’ve just accepted the fact that insecurity is going to be a part of my relationship with Keith. I will always wonder if or when he might leave me, stop loving me, get sick of me, blahblah. I mean, it’s not just that I’ve personally experienced adultery and divorce; it’s that I’ve also seen it happen over and over and over again, same story every time. I feel like my generation has just become really good at justifying ending a relationship that has gone sour… and letting relationships go sour in the first place. I’m not sure how long I have to be married to be convinced I won’t be left, because I’ve seen 3-year marriages collapse, 10-year marriages, 17-year marriages… you know? I get afraid that I’ll be 39, going through a rough time, raising 2 Martin kids and Keith will say, “I haven’t been happy for a long time- I think we’d be happier if we weren’t married anymore.” I am NOT saying that it is within Keith’s character in the slightest to do or say something like that, but the terrifying thing is that I didn’t think it was in the other men at all to do that to their wives, either! Each affair, separation, and divorce I’ve seen has been a complete shock to me.
I know it’s not fair that Keith has to live in the wake of my past experiences when he’s done nothing but be consistent, committed, and work hard to make sure I’m happy. But he always assures me that he entered into the relationship with his eyes open- he knew what I’d been through and the struggles I have. He’s incredibly patient. All I have to do is tell him when I’m feeling insecure and afraid and he reminds me of how much he loves me, WHY he loves me, how happy he is, and how, even if one day he might happen to feel unhappy, he will never leave me. It makes me feel better to discuss actions we will take to secure a healthy marriage and ALSO the actions we will take if things go bad.
SO ANYWAY! Nowadays (post-wedding) when I have bouts of insecurity he reminds me that he PINKY PROMISED! And it has become a little joke.
So after the super serious pinky promise Melissa came over to help us cut the cake. This is Melissa:
She is also the one who worked hard to make our very lovely cake.
(loving on me)
To kind of wrap up the night the crowd gathered around the bonfire and Keith’s brother gave a really great heartfelt “best man speech” that Keith talked about for days.
(SO many girls find out that Keith is awesome and ask me if he has a brother. The answer is yes. Keith has a brother. Here he is! No, you can’t have him. He’s married.)
It has taken me three weeks to get all of these wedding posts up! Also- I’ve been married for three weeks already! Each day is happier than the day before.
After family photos we met at Blue Ginger for dinner.
Blue Ginger is an Asian bistro in Dublin and is the restaurant Keith and I went to celebrate our engagement. We thought it was yummy, so why not celebrate our being married there, too!
I love him!
Jamie and John
Keithy got some sushi. I got duck dumplings, the same thing I got on engagement day.
I also tried to eat sushi for the first time in my life, but that story doesn’t end well.
After Blue Ginger we headed to my parents’ house for our Fire Night Party (AKA reception).
Melissa Foley (wife of one of Keith’s bandmates) made our cake!
My mother (and dad) organized, decorated, set up, and put together the entire Fire Night Party. She did an amazing awesome job and I wish I had more photos of everything she did! (I just didn’t think to grab my camera and/or tell the girl who did our pictures what I wanted. =my one and only big wedding regret.) My mom had the yard all in pretty sparkly lights, she had beautiful autumn-like table cloths and centerpieces on the tables, she prepared make-your-own kabob tables with different meats and vegetables and people cooked their kabobs on the grill. Dad prepared sangria and filled his fishing boat with sodas, beers, etc. T.Matt put together my music mix and Ryan let us use his DJ equipment so the party had music! Dad set up a tent with foosball and the skittles game he made by hand, and also made a big bonfire and fire snacks (smores). Everything was super classy, sparkly, pretty, and yummy! My mother is right in her element when it comes to events. She doesn’t do anything halfway.
Keith and I had sort of been doing our own separate mingling as soon as we walked through the door of my parents’ house. So an hour or two into Fire Night I’d had a few +spiked sangrias to keep warm (and it totally worked) and I also had REFUSED to take off my super long heeled shoes because I loved them. I packed sneakers just in case, but… the shoes! They buckled at the ankle and had an adorable bow across the toes and… they just weren’t coming off, even though no one could see them and the heels were super thin so I kept getting stuck in the grass as I walked through the yard… Aanyway. It was about this time that Keith and I crossed paths on the patio as a song started and we took each other and started dancing.
Now, Keith and I never had “a song”. We tried to have a song, but I always told him that the best couple songs were from shared experiences, not picking and choosing. By Wedding Day the closest I’d come to having a song that reminded me of Keith was Jack Johnson’s Better Together because Keith always seemed to sing it to me on late nights when we first started dating. But KEITH said the song that reminded him of ME was Red Hot Chili Peppers Hard To Concentrate… and so we just never pinned down a couple song. So anyway, on Wedding Day when this song played and we started dancing it took me a minute to piece together what it was because I’m really bad with intros… and also: sangria.
Then Keithy started singing it to me. The first song we danced to. The first song he sang to me. And it turns out it was Jason Mraz I’m Yours.
Sidenote: it’s funny that that song ended up being the song because it’s always been one that’s been kind of unofficially off limits for me because it belonged to my old high school friend/ fellow online journaler who is a SUPER SUPER CRAZY-FOR-JASON-MRAZ FAN (who ALSO happened to date the same high school boy as me, happened to get pregnant a little before me, left baby daddy a little before I left mine, fell in love and got engaged a little before me, got a job very similar to the one I got, HAPPENED to get married on the exact same day as me, who I think ALSO danced to that Jason Mraz song with her son on that day!!!) so I’m slightly concerned (but not really) that she will think I am stealing her life! Ha! But I promise- the parallels are a complete coincidence (and a little weird). Also, she’s not catty, so I don’t think this will be an issue. It’s just kind of funny to me.
When Keith and I were first falling in love he’d say, “I love you so much I have that ache behind my sternum.” That’s how I felt dancing with him. That’s how I feel about him every day. (I am so fortunate.)
I completely adore him.
The next post is my LAST wedding post!!! It will be of cake cutting, Keith’s brother, the rest of fire night, and happily ever after.
We hadn’t even gotten to the vows yet when it started raining.
Everyone got their umbrellas out and I stood under the arch shivering until I finally said, “I’m going inside!” I mean, Hello. I just spent hours on my hair and makeup. Priorities.
Adry started exclaiming, “There won’t be a marriage! It rained! There won’t be a marriage!” But the rain didn’t stop me from enjoying my day (maybe even more than before). And it certainly didn’t stop us from getting married.
Everyone gathered in the Martin living room chatting and joking around, and I was happy with it. Everything was relaxed and intimate. I was ready for vows.
We put our rings on our fingers (which we had not been cheating and wearing for the past couple of months).
And Keithy kissed his bride.
And then dipped his bride and continued kissing. (Photographer couldn’t see the dip from her angle.)
Then we were pronounced husband and wife!
‘Welcome to the Family’ Hugs from Parents
Adry celebrated his new stepdad.
And then not 5 minutes into married life I told Stepdad to fix his new son’s pants because he hiked them up too far and made them highwaters.
The sun came out again and we headed outside for family photos.
(Pause. Side story time.) I was in the dress that Keith ultimately picked out. I had chosen a dress months before while out shopping with Jamie and my mom, but it was nothing like the vintage 1930’s dress I originally wanted. Then at my personal shower two weeks prior to the wedding Jamie said, “I was at Flower Child and saw the exact dress you wanted!” So I HAD to go to Flower Child to see and I took Keith along with me. Of course we couldn’t find the dress Jamie had spotted, but I tried on a handful of vintage dresses for Keith anyway. None of them were striking my fancy, but Keithy told me he really liked that little 60’s dress. I was all meh, the lace on the shoulders and chest bugs me, but THEN I found the most adorable pair of shoes that went with the dress perfectly! I told Keith I’d be happy with the dress as long as we found ribbon to tie around the waist into a bow. During subsequent trips to hobby shops and Macy’s Keith helped me find ribbon for the waist, a shawl, and a headband. He even vetoed the hair pieces I picked out in favor of that headband. Something about the fact that my wedding day outfit was entirely put together by my hot nerd manly-man zero-fashion-sense husband makes me smile. I’m okay with trading the ‘first seeing her walk down the aisle’ moment with the half hour he spent with me in front of a mirror in the Macy’s accessories department tying shawls around my shoulders and making me giggle.
Anyway! I was dressed and ready and I realized that Oh crap I was late and everyone was seated and waiting outside which meant I had to make an entrance. I had tried my best to avoid the ceremonial aisle-esque bride entrance and had hoped for a casual mingling and okay guys, time for vows type of a deal. As an antibride, I had no interest in being in a bride spotlight and all of the sudden things felt all formal and so I begged Jessie and Jamie to walk out with me… or at least walk out before me playing “White Wedding” on their phones and doing crazy 80s dances. (Which was Jamie’s vision for my wedding, and it would have made for a great distraction.) So I made it to the threshold (and alas, no one had youtubed White Wedding) and saw my handsome husband-to-be and his dad waiting on the patio.
Keith’s dad is the Adult Ministries pastor at Grace Church of Powell. When Keith asked me to marry him I didn’t care about weddings or receptions or flowers or any of that stuff so when we were deciding how to go about getting married I just had one desire and priority: that we be married by his dad. 1) because he is awesome, 2) because Keith’s parents mean the world to him, and 3) because that’s just an incredibly special moment that I wouldn’t trade for anything… to be married by my dad-in-law while watching my husband hang on to every one of his words with such respect and admiration.
(Keith and his parents laughing about something before I got outside)
So I walked outside to join Keith and his dad under the arch. I was feeling sort of spotlight anxious and things were kind of a blur until I heard my brother Matt to my right say, “Hey, Sis.” That was cool because it reminded me who I was surrounded by and why they were there.
(I liked this picture of me during prayer with my dad praying in the background.)
(After the ceremony Keith’s dad told him that there’ve been few times in his life that he’s had Keith’s absolute attention and that was one of them.)
(Adry during the ceremony. Hah)
I had Keith’s wedding band on my thumb.
(Adry with Uncle Jacob watching Keith become his stepdad)
We hadn’t even gotten to the vows yet when it started raining. Ceremony Part II will be my next post!
On September 22nd, 2012 I becameMrs. Keith Josiah Martin.
On Wedding Day Eve Xavier (Keith’s very best friend) drove from (somewhere around) Baltimore and met at my parents’ house where everyone was gathered putting together kabob meat, lighting the yard, decorating, slicing oranges and limes and mixing sangria, cleaning, and all of that kind of stuff. It all seemed to be going well (besides the fact that I got fired from slicing the limes for fear that I would cut off my finger before the wedding day) until Keith told me that he and X were headed out for the night to go to a party… and then the dormant fire-breathing, insecure PMS dragon inside of me was awakened. I was all “*&##^&%fire*^#@**$%#*#*^$fire*#@insecurity!!*%#fire** #@!fire**you’releavingme$##$**” or something like that. Most human beings react to fire-breathing PMS dragons defensively. Or fight back. Keithy sat down and listened to me, then held me and told me how much I meant to him, and how happy I made him, and how excited he was to make me his. He told me that I was right- he shouldn’t leave and go to the party- and that he was going to stay by my side and do whatever needed to be done and make sure I was happy. In that moment I was reminded of the week before when I was at my little bachelorette party and my girlfriends were discussing boys and boy issues and I was just listening in until one of them asked me, “How does Keith handle communication?” And all I could say was, “…Well. Perfectly.” And they rolled their eyes all Well of course- because Keith is perfect! You never complain about him.
And so, on Wedding Day Eve when Keith was holding me and being… well, you know. Perfect. I just decided to never take for granted how freaking lucky blessed I was to be loved and cherished and taken care of by a man who listens and considers how I feel… and I don’t even need to unleash the dragon! He just does it. Every day. Sometimes I pinch his butt arm butt just to make sure he’s real. And after we got home that night I murdered his man dignity by making him put my hair in rollers in front of X… who told him he was doing it wrong.
I woke up on Wedding Day to cramps and clouds and felt really lucky and really happy. I shaved. I recruited Little Bro J as my Bride Chauffeur and he picked me up for my manicure and pedicure with Mom and Mom-in-Law. Everyone there thought I was 17 and getting ready for prom. They also told me I had an awesome Mom and Mom To Be. (I do.) Then MiL took me back to their house where the ceremony was to be held later that afternoon. Her house was gorgeous. She, her sister-in-law, and Keith’s brother’s wife had worked so hard on it and the yard, and a beautifully decorated arch… and she and some of the other lady family members had prepared a lovely and yummy lunch for everyone there.
Jessie and Jamie met me at their house for lunch. After we ate Sherry (Keith’s mom) gave us her bedroom and bathroom space for Hair&Makeup&GirlTime. Which was awesome and a lot of fun. I love those girls!