This thing that we have done, it's changed me.
I don't reach for your hand as often, not because I don't want to hold it, but because my own hand feels absurdly huge, like Andre the Giant's, like I'm having a constant out-of-body experience because I've seen things and done things that have tweaked my mind and my heart.
I look down at my body and it feels like someone else's, in minute ways. The fresh-faced girl of 22, standing at the altar, is still here but at this moment, she feels lost and not sure she'll ever find her way back; she's road-weary from the journey and suffering from mild shock.
It's not that you haven't stood by me 100, 110, or 1,000,000 percent, because you have and you do, and I know I'm an undeservedly blessed woman. You prove that to me every single day.
But there is a cross that I bear, all mothers bear, that you can't bear for me and I don't know how to share the burden because I'm new at this; I've only stumbled a few steps along the walk to Calvary. And I want to explain this to you in a way that means something, but I don't know how, and when I can't explain I'd rather not talk about it at all, because this is now all a matter of life-and-death and the tone matters.
My mom said this to me:
"I have figured out the secret to marriage: Love God more than your husband, love your husband more than your kids, love your kids with all your heart."
I am trying to figure out how to do that and do it well, but my attempts are sloppy. I watch everything from outside eyes and I feel like a stranger. Five years of marriage next month - it seems like so little but also so much.
I want to hang up my stranger's cloak - resentment that parades as strength - and stay awhile.