It’s 2:20 a.m. The lights are out in our hotel room and I can’t sleep. I’m sure you’re not surprised. We’re on the eve of one of the biggest milestone moments of our career, speaking at one of the most prestigious conferences for wedding photographers anywhere. We’re also nestled into the crisp white sheets. The air is turned down, how I like it, even though it makes you cold. You’ve got your hair pulled up in your nighttime pony tail, the one that makes me giggle every night, because it reminds me of Pebbles from The Flintstones. I told you I was going to bed with you, and I turned off the lights. You rolled over, covered your eyes with your mask, and when out as fast as they did. I’ve always envied that about you, you know, because it’s hard for me to fall asleep. Maybe it’s because, like Steven Tyler sang, I don’t want to close my eyes or fall asleep, because I’ll miss you, and I don’t want to miss a thing. Maybe that’s why you’re so beautiful inside and out to me, to so many. It’s all those extra hours of sleep.
But the truth is, we haven’t been sleeping much these days, have we? If we’re being honest, we don’t sleep much at all, because, for so long, we’ve been chasing our dreams. We catch one, and then we follow another, a constant game of dream-chasing Whack-A-Mole. Yet, as I sit here, listening to Ed Sheeran (which is trouble, because I get emotional), I’ve decided that for tonight, for right now, and maybe at least for tomorrow, I’m unplugging that machine that demands that as soon as we’ve slayed one dragon, we have to move on to the next one. The one that says as soon as we’ve reached one peak, we have the climb a higher one. The one that doesn’t allow us to stop, slow down, look around, and smell those proverbial roses, because we’ve always got our feet in today, but our eyes on tomorrow.
Tonight and tomorrow, though, I say no.
I say that we stand on this mountaintop of life for a few minutes to savor a few extra moments, to let the wind that’s been at our backs propelling us forward faster and faster to breeze through our hair and across our face, to be there long enough to breath it in instead of sucking wind, to let our lungs adjust to this new altitude, to for the first time in a long time be on a peak without peeking to the next one, to just be. Us. I say, sweetie, that tomorrow, we stand. There’ll be another sunrise for speculating, another dawn for dreaming, and another time for testing new waters. But not tonight. Not tomorrow. Not now.
Now is for us. For you. For me. Now is for all the people in our life who saw something in us before we saw it in ourselves, who believed in us before we were anything worth believing in, the ones who told us to leave the nest not because there was a safety net or we knew how to fly, but because they knew that with their love, advice, support, wisdom, counsel, and every encouraging word, we wouldn’t have to fly on our own, because they’d be the wind beneath our wings.
But do you know the best part about flying through life with you?
It’s not the sights, sounds, soaring, or successes, it’s that every night I get to land right where I am right now: right next to you.
So let’s fly tomorrow. Just fly.
I love you,
Photo by Annamarie Akins