On Our Anniversary


l&j - bridegroom-128

By Urban South Photo

“Right now, I love you forever. I love you for the hardest mile we walked together.” Andrea Gibson

I don’t know if i can in good faith call it my most favorite part of our wedding day, only because i can’t choose a slice of the whole cake and call it the most sumptuous.

But this is definitely the story i love most today.

We woke up on August ninth to a downpour. My mother had always told me how they had wrapped her train and head with trash bags as she walked to the church, to keep them from soaking. Saran held my hand and told me it was good luck.

Jonathan and i had always loved the rain. I told our photographer – who had managed to sneak engagement portraits in between drizzles some nine months prior – that this was just our lot. We learned to love in the downpour; we’d been engaged just two months when a plane crash took four people from our family forever, when i was in biweekly therapy for clinical OCD and anxiety, when we looked at each other and said, “are they right?”

“Are we too young?”

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Happy First Birthday, South Sudan!

A year ago today, South Sudan was born a free country. I had, on this day, the immense privilege, joy, and honor of being in Juba city to celebrate with the South Sudanese this beautiful and hope-filled occasion. I think it speaks through without the need for utterance that this day, this day was one to be treasured for years to come.

And what a year it has been. South Sudan has remained on the brink of a full-scale war and it seems the world has waited, with baited breath, for the fragility of the hope of sovereignty to crumble. But it hasn’t. So today, rather than harboring on the lament of tragedy, i want to celebrate the resilience and courage of human beings in South Sudan. Prayers and wishes and thoughts for peace and for stability are what i send today. As my friend Fr. Katongole has said, “lament is the heart of hope.”

current jam: ‘your song’ elton john

best thing: midnight runs for ice cream with j & summer days.