Making Cookies and Promises That Stick

Monday, December 19, 2011

It was December 18, seven years ago, and I was on a first date making sugar cookies. This is not a euphemism. We were actually scooping, measuring, stirring, cutting out, and baking up cookies to take to his friend’s holiday party. Saying yes to that interesting date — and eventually to that remarkable man — remains one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life to date.

Every year since then, my husband and I make sugar cookies on December 18. It’s our date-iversary. We’ve added some new things to the whole affair, like exchanging a Christmas tree ornament and holiday CD or two. And this year, for the first time, we added a special ingredient to our batch of lovin’ from the oven: The Youngster. Our little baker joined the fun, cutting out his gingerbread boys and stars … however, getting him on board with the “these need to go on the cookie sheet to bake” part of things was indeed its own negotiation.

We had a jolly time, and the cookies came out great. After our wee one went to bed, the evening had all the elements and promise of being just as wonderful as the buttery crisps of goodness. There was dinner (made by the husband), a crackling fire (built by the same dude) and time carved out (away from the computer) to just chill. Melt into the moment of just-you-and-me.

So why did it end in a quiet, slightly chilly argument?

Well, truth exposed, it’s because I did it again. I got so caught up in the Gotta Dos of the day that I fell off the gratitude wagon. That same thing we spoke about just a few days ago, here I was not doing my part. Yes, I was sure to thank my husband for the lovely dinner and fire. There was levity in the day. We even cracked jokes and danced around the kitchen while making cookies. The problem was I didn’t make enough room in our special day for kindness, for tenderness. And I woke up this morning feeling crappy about it, wishing for a do-over.

Since do-overs don’t exist in real life, or outside of children’s yard games, I did something else. Something I did the last time I felt this way: I took out our book of love and read through our wedding vows. So many lines and words from the officiant (my husband’s aunt)’s sermon and reflections lept off the page and into my heart.

By using reason and humility to understand one another, we discover ourselves.

And re-reading our vows just about did me in. These words we said, these promises we made to each other … they were powerful, brimming with aspiration, inspiration, and love. Transformative. It affirmed this fact: I married this man, started a family with him, and intend to be on this ride for the full run. There may not be do-overs, per se, but the do-better thing? I’m all over it.

  • 1
    Kristin says:

    Darn you, tear-jerker. That is all.

  • 2
    Ann says:

    I love the details of how you celebrate your anniversary & great first date story! I think I am going to get off the computer for a little while and sit with my husband!!!

    • 2.1
      Ms. Mary Mack says:

      Ann! So happy that you’re enjoying the blog and the stories. Have a good one.