There are so many things going on right now that every once in a while, Sam and I just stop and hug each other. You can get overwhelmed. You keep crossing things off your list, and something else rears its head and demands attention. But through it all, we've always said, if this is the worst we get, we're in good shape. I think that's how we've sailed through the years.
This is the house we bought as newlyweds. I fell in love with it on the walk through when I lifted a corner of Pepto Bismal pink carpet to reveal original hardwood floors. It had awesome bones, like a corner fireplace and a built in window seat in our bedrooms. We meant to remodel immediately. Really. We did a lot that first year too, painting, ripping out carpet, and violently disposing of the vertical blinds, also sickly pink. But Samuel Sterling Pritchard-Torres entered my life just after our first anniversary, followed by Thomson Maximilian 20 months later, and Savannah Helene the next year. And I was a working mother through all of this. Spare time was taken up by mud pies and epic croquet matches. Renaissance Faires were staged on the patio with Fischer Price castles. Costumes were stock piled. Floors were not refinished.
Then the boys were both diagnosed with autism, and we shifted gears. We didn't slow down. We found ways they could keep up. What we did didn't change, just how we did it. They were both amazingly up to the challenge too and succeeded brilliantly against their diagnosis. Their baby sister was their biggest advocate. By the time elementary school was over, Thommy was talking, and no one could tell there was anything different about Sammy. And the kitchen still needed new cabinets.
People warned us about the teen years, but those have been a breeze. The kids excel in school, are very straight laced, and still love to spend time with us. They do chores to the point we jokingly call them the Teen Minions. And they're very game about swinging sledge hammers and prying up floors. We're gaining momentum.
There have been times when so much is going on at once that I'm not sure I can do it all. Like right now. The house is in an uproar with boxes of unlabeled stuff, missing power cords and chargers, stacks of flooring, gallons of paint, and numerous miscellaneous items awaiting fresh color in my workshop. Did I mention a tractor trailer and a 20 x 8 foot pod are parked in the side yard?
Still, I come home from the office to the aroma of dinner, a set table with candles, and music to match the cuisine wafting through the air. The children greet me at the door, if not the car, and Mom is sitting peacefully with her book within sight and not 4 states away with me worrying.
Yeah, I have it good. Mostly because 20 years ago June 1st I wised up and married Sam Torres. I owe him the peace in my life.
To my husband, my friend, my lover, and my fellow adventurer, I appreciate every moment together, and I look forward to whatever God hands us. It's been one hell of a ride, Baby. As long as you're with me, I'm ready for the rest.
Happy 20th Anniversary.