Happy Birthday, Ashley

My cell phone beeps and wakes me up, an alarm that says “5:45am, Up and at them”.  I turn over and tap your shoulder.

“10 minutes,” you quietly mumble and return to sleep.  After 10 minutes, I tap your warm shoulder again, to which you say “10 minutes.”

“You already got your 10 minutes,” I tell you, as if this is somehow new to our routine.

“You did?  But I don’t remember it,” you say and turn back over in the dark.

You’d think this wouldn’t be funny after the many-eth time.  I smile and pull close to you.  Then you tell me your dreams from the night before and how they’re so “out there” we had to create a new index to rank them properly (Austin Powers Land, re-imagined finales for Broadway hits that have never existed– and that the world may not be ready for).  There’s nothing crazy about our morning routine, in fact it’s pretty simple.  But it’s home to me.  I love waking you up (in the nice way, and in return you don’t bite me), and how being close to you comes with 10 years of memories and life we’ve made together.

You’re my best friend, my sweetheart, and the mother of my children.  You’re amazing and thoughtful, brilliant and beautiful.  I love the way you laugh and how you smile when I walk in the door.  I love that you can’t decorate a cake to save your life and that you laugh with me through crazy times—like when the front of the trailer blew off in the Nevada desert and we made due with duct tape.  Not a day goes by that I’m not grateful I met you.  You make me better every day.

I love you with all of my heart.

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