My wife is a real night owl and I ... well, I am descended from a long line of farmers.
So it is 7 AM and she is sleeping in on a Saturday while I have 2,000 steps in and am hoping for a big day.
Today is our third wedding anniversary.
Let me brag about my wife for a moment in a way that she would never let me do if she were awake and reading this.
She is both smart and funny. She has four master's degrees (history, English, teaching, and honestly I can't remember what else) and she's working on her PhD in public health. She speaks 8 languages fluently and knows "a little" of half a dozen more.
She loves to laugh, has a quick wit and is the best physical comic I have seen after Charlie Chaplin and Jim Carey. She swears like a sailor when she's losing to me at cribbage, but it's all for show. She never met a book she didn't want to read or a stuffed animal she didn't want to bring home.
She has faced adversity that would have crushed me and come out whole, healthy and the stronger for it.
And for some reason that never fails to amaze me, she loves me. She loves ever inch of this body of mine which I have spent so much time loathing. She loves me with an intensity that has helped me learn to love myself. She encourages me to be the best I can be while at the same time not just accepting me, but cherishing me for who I am now.
And that is why I got up in the early hours of this morning to start exercising: because she has helped me love myself, but also so I can spend as many healthy years with her as I can. Tonight we will have dinner at the restaurant where we went after we eloped three years ago. I remember we were married by an 86-year-old justice of the peace in the lobby of the city hall. My father drove up from New York for the occasion. He died last October but, oh how he loved my wife.
After dinner we're going dancing to a live band. We love to dance together and do it every week: swirling around the floor in each other's arms.
This past year I have lost people - my father and others - whom I loved. I cherish their memories and I cherish the loved ones I have left all the more. My friends, I wish you all happiness, health, and many years with the ones you love.