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8 years. Wow!

Today, Barry and I celebrate 8 years together. I’m in Florida before I travel overseas with my dad, so this is the first July 11 that I haven’t been with Barry.

For the uninitiated, Barry and I met when he taught me how to skydive. He had a strict “no dating students” policy, which frustrated me to no end.

Eight years ago today on my graduation jump (pictured here) he motioned for me to fly to him in freefall. I had already completed the requirements for the jump, so I was kinda confused.

He pulled me in close, and we shared our first kiss in freefall, plummeting toward an oncoming planet at 120+ mph.

We’ve been together ever since.

This time last year, I was not yet diagnosed as diabetic, so I have some THOUGHTS to share about this man who has so fearlessly supported me through my diagnosis to today.

He is the one who urged me to go to the doctor when I was writhing in pain on September 18.

He was sitting next to me when I got the call.

He went with me to my appointments.

He held my hand at Juniper and Ivy when I cried over the menu during our wedding anniversary meal.

When my alarm goes off to remind me to take my medicine, he sings to me: TIME TO TAKE YOUR MEDICINE, and when I dismiss the alarm without taking it, he sings it to me again.

When none of my clothes fit anymore at various stages of this adventure, he gave me the permission I wouldn’t give myself: Get yourself something new that fits. You earned it.

He was my biggest cheerleader when I realized the choice is MINE to change my life, and always has my back. And I’ve made A LOT of changes.

He held my hand through all of my professional transitions this year and reminded me I have a voice, I have a choice, and this is my life to design. He reminded me that I was smart, capable, and fearless and held that vision of me when I couldn’t hold it myself.

He is my adventure buddy on the trail, on the water, through life in general.

Thank you for loving every single version of me, Mr. Williams. I am so lucky to be walking through this life with you by my side.

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