Through the ashes blooms a rose…


Image credit: hskoken / 123RF Stock Photo

Have you ever held onto a Truth so absolutely that it becomes the very fabric by which you live your life?

Maybe you were young when it happened and you met this guy who you thought the sun revolved around. You really liked this guy, so much so that you would write letters to him and he to you. Sweet, rambling epithets of friendship and devotion.

But maybe he lived in another city from you so you decide to move there where you can be together. You imagine a life for you and this guy. A house, kids, a cat. No, a dog.

He might even be in a rock band and you think it might be cool to go on tour with them, but maybe not since someone needs to stay home to take care of the dog. And kids.

So you move all the way to Hollywood where you work for a newspaper doing important things but making little money. This guy, the one you moved for, he starts to pull away and you wonder why.

Then one night you agree to meet him in a bar and he sits across from you wearing that shirt you love on him, with sunglasses in the pocket. They're your sunglasses. The ones he took from you that day while hiking and you thought looked cute on him so you let him have them. The same sunglasses that are forever memorialized in a press photo the band did before their album came out. You really wish you had your sunglasses, but this isn't about the sunglasses, it's about the guy sitting across from you.

He's telling you he never cared about you. At all. You should get over him, he's no good for you, he never loved you. Move on.

You think of all the letters, the sweet words, the move to be near him. Then you leave the bar and think the rat bastard broke your frikkin heart.

Then something strange happens. You go on with your life, even moving to England where you get married, pregnant, and divorced all without ever seeing Big Ben or most of London for that matter. You mostly saw the rim of a toilet because you had horrid morning sickness.

But it was worth it because you got a beautiful baby girl. Then, because you utterly failed in that relationship, you live your life with your baby girl, working hard, trying to get by.

One day you meet a nice guy.

He's probably the kind of guy you should've dated to begin with and saved yourself the hassle of heartache, but you didn't meet him until that point in your life so you take a chance that he'll like you.

He does. A lot.

So maybe you marry this really great guy and a few years later you have a son with him.

Then one day it happens. You're at a party and you're telling someone about the guy who broke your heart. The rat bastard band dude who said he never loved you. You're telling the story as if he ruined your life when all of a sudden you realize, he didn't ruin it, he helped make it.

In an instant your world is spun around and shifted. What was foggy clears. That piece of bitter remorse you've held in your heart for too long evaporates.

And maybe you think to yourself, he gave me a gift, that guy who took my sunglasses. By breaking my heart I found the courage to travel to another country where I got my daughter. From her I learned to love unconditionally which in turn let me see my husband for what he is. A truly great guy who loves me in spite of, or perhaps because of, all my flaws.

Then one day you're writing a blog for other's entertainment but really what you're doing is writing the oddest love letter. It's not really about that guy, it's about your husband. Because in a few days you'll be celebrating your 16th wedding anniversary. Sometimes you can hardly believe it's been 16 years and others, you're just so damn happy your husband has put up with you for that long because you know you're a tad high maintenance and perhaps a little kookoo. Just a little, mind you.

But in the end you're over the moon crazy for your husband and love him a little more each day. If you'd met him any sooner than when you did, you wouldn't have appreciated how awesome he was.

Perhaps someone should send a thank you note to the guy who stole those sunglasses all those years ago. Hey, they were Ray Bans and my favorite. I can't let it go.

Sometimes people ask if I'd like to go back and change anything in my life. I would be afraid to do that. If I changed one thing, then maybe I wouldn't be where I am right now. From where I'm sitting, this is a damn fine place to be.

Happy Anniversary, my love.

Ohmygosh! We were so young and freakishly cute.

77 thoughts on “Through the ashes blooms a rose…”

  1. amyshojaiamyshojai

    Happy anniversary! I adored this blog post–you are so right and I’m delighted you shared this “happy ever after” ending. My 32nd anniversary is Thursday. *s*

  2. Lissa ClouserLissa Clouser

    How sweet! I love the photograph of the two of you. =)

    It’s so easy for us to get caught up in the moment, especially a bad moment, and think we’re on a downward spiral or somebody/something ruined us. But then that moment comes, just like you described, where suddenly you appreciate even the heartache, because in a crazy way of fate it has landed you right where you are the most loved and most happy. Happy Anniversary!

  3. AnonymousAnonymous

    God, I look like I’m 16 or something. This is the sweetest thing anybody’s ever written about me, thank you my love for 16+ years and here’s hoping for many sixteens more.


  4. EmmaEmma

    Beautiful post, Tameri. You both look lovely and so happy in your wedding photo.
    And what is it about guys in rock bands?? πŸ™‚
    Happy Anniversary x

  5. August McLaughlinAugust McLaughlin

    I have chills and tears. Gorgeous post, Tameriβ€”soaked with your honesty, big heart and insightfulness. Happy anniversary to a couple so deserving!

  6. prudencemacleodprudencemacleod

    What a wonderful story. I am glad you found you happy place and have the chance to truly enjoy it. May you both be blessed with a hundred more anniversaries.

  7. Kristy K. James...Living, Loving, LaughingKristy K. James...Living, Loving, Laughing

    Happy 16th Anniversary, Tameri and Dave! What an awesome story, Tameri. You are so right about not wanting to change anything that’s happened in your life. One little detour along the way and who knows where you would be now. So glad that you met the love of your life and are living the fairytale. And yes…it does look like you married a sixteen year old….you 18 year old cougar. πŸ™‚

  8. Coleen PatrickColeen Patrick

    Happy Anniversary!! A beautiful post Tameri πŸ™‚

  9. Trish Loye ElliottTrish Loye Elliott

    What a fantastic post! Thank you so much for sharing it. Happy Anniversary.

  10. jansenschmidtjansenschmidt

    Would you please pass the Kleenex? That was lovely and so true. Always remember: Every step of every day leads us to where we are going.

    Happy anniversary!

    Patricia Rickrode
    w/a Jansen Schmidt

  11. Natalie HartfordNatalie Hartford

    AWWWW…best blog post/love letter EVER!
    Happy Anniversary you two – adorable, gorgeous, wonderful, loving people!!! It’s nice to hear about dreams come true and real life love stories that have a happily ever after.
    I couldn’t agree more with you Tameri. I don’t regret one bit of my life; the good, the bad, and the ugly. I don’t regret the heart breaks or the betrayals or even my divorce. Quite the contrary, I am ever so very grateful because everything in my life brought me to this point. And from where I sit, life freaking rocks hard!!! It was worth it. I wouldn’t be half the woman I am without all the stuff that I went through…
    So amen to seeing life for what it is…as my mother likes to put it: AFLO (Another F*cking Learning Opportunity). Amen to that Anne Marie….
    Here’s to the next 16 years blowing your mind and your heart even more wide open and to happiness that leaves you smiling ear-to-ear every single day!!!
    Love yas…Muah!! xoxoox

  12. Amber WestAmber West

    Love. Just love.

    Also, if we are ever somewhere together, I’m taking you sunglasses shopping.

  13. David N. WalkerDavid N. Walker

    Beautiful story, Tameri. God does indeed bring ALL things together for good to those who love Him. He takes the worst thing that ever happens and uses it to bring good for us.

  14. Peggy FreemanPeggy Freeman

    What a wonderful post – you have a truly magical gift and we are blessed to be treated to your insight. I also consider myself exponentially fortunate to have been able to reconnect with you and even visit not once but twice! – funny how we shared such brief moments of our lives but we were able to pick right back up after those sixteen years. I wish you two many, many happy years!

  15. Nicole bretonNicole breton

    So sweet!!!! This post made me want to cry a little! I love your husbands comment on it too. Happy anniversary and ps, you look great as a blonde πŸ™‚

  16. Imelda EvansImelda Evans

    Happy Anniversary! And I think the cutest thing was the response from your gorgeous husband. I can see why you like him! πŸ™‚

  17. AnonymousAnonymous

    I look at a certain rose bush in my back yard and remember that little girl and her Mama…and when they found a new daddy and husband! Sixteen, time has certainly flown by. Happy Anniversary.
    Love you all,

  18. Louise BehielLouise Behiel

    Happy Anniversary, lovely lady. obviously he’s a keeper – must b e to be your match. hugs

  19. patriciasandspatriciasands

    *sniffle … wiping eyes, blowing nose* This is so beautiful, Tameri. I believe there’s a book here, a very beautiful love story – authentic and full of emotion. What a woman you are. What a writer you are. Happy anniversary to you and your husband. There’s no doubt there will be many, many more.

  20. Gayle CarlineGayle Carline

    omygoshthisissodarlingiloveit. Have a great anniversary!

  21. sydneyaaliyahsydneyaaliyah

    Tameria. That was so freakin beautiful. You got me. Happy anniversary! And, Dave is a cutie. Now, as soon as I stop crying, I need to go out and find someone worthy of a letter like that.

  22. Debra KristiDebra Kristi

    Aw, so beautiful. You guys ARE so cute!!! Happy anniversary, my friend! Wishing all the best for you both at this special time.

  23. Alarna Rose GrayAlarna Rose Gray

    Happy anniversary, Tameri! It is funny how the way we see things turn on their head sometimes πŸ™‚ Sweet letter.

  24. Marcy KennedyMarcy Kennedy

    Happy Anniversary! And what a lovely story. My husband and I have said the same thing. Despite the things we’ve gone through, we wouldn’t change any of it because we ended up together.

  25. Catie RhodesCatie Rhodes

    I loved reading this. I’ve thought the same thing many times. I’ve remembered truly heartbreaking and/or crazy-making moments in my life and thought, “I wish I could have done ___.”

    But, if I had, my life would not where it is now. More and more often, I think being truly happy is about learning to appreciate what you have and being able to see how you really did luck out.

    Happy Anniversary. Wonderful post.

  26. mj monaghanmj monaghan

    Love the way life comes together. I LOVE happy endings. And that’s all that matters. Sometimes we have to go through a lot of mud before we get to the shower. I think it was a fair trade: sunglasses for the love of your life.

    Happy anniversary to you both, my friend.

  27. Raelyn BarclayRaelyn Barclay

    A crazy wonderful love letter! Congrats. The two of you are so cute. Happy anniversary!

  28. MarciaMarcia

    Ahh! Perfect! I love the whole story! We are all where we were meant to be…every road we took led us to where we are. Can’t erase any of it. So happy for you! I know you’ll have many more wonderful years together! You two really are cute!

  29. Kate MacNicolKate MacNicol

    So sorry that I’m late to your party Tameri. Love this post and I wish you many, many, many more years with Mr. Right. Happy Anniversary!!!

  30. Lynette M. Burrows (@LynetteMBurrows)Lynette M. Burrows (@LynetteMBurrows)

    Such a wonderful love letter. Life, warts and all, is grand! My second marriage is all that much sweeter because of the lessons I learned because of my first marriage and my divorce. Thanks for reminding me to stop and reflect on those lessons so I can cherish what I now have even more. Happy Anniversary!

  31. Sheila SeabrookSheila Seabrook

    What a beautiful post to the love of your life, Tameri. Congratulations on your 16th wedding anniversary!

  32. Bridgette BoothBridgette Booth

    You’re still freakishly cute, and I loved this post, and how you wrote it. I’m a June bride also. πŸ™‚

  33. Jenny HansenJenny Hansen

    I agree with Bridgette! Y’all are SO freakishly cute. I adore this post! πŸ™‚

    My 5 year anniversary is coming up and you’re making me think I should write a post…

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