The Nelsons: Five Years Later

It has been five years since I said “I do” to my best friend. It’s crazy how time flies by so fast. Cliche, I know. But so much has changed in the past 5 years it’s difficult to even know where to begin.

I guess the most logical place to start would be on February 28, 2009

We had planned a winter wedding in the hopes that we would have copious amounts of snow for our wedding day. Unfortunately, we weren’t so lucky. The week before it dumped snow, but, thanks to the unreliable Michigan weather, it melted two days before our big day. I was so sad. But I was over the moon about marrying this dude.

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I swear to you that I fell in love with Anthony when I was 14. I very clearly remember thinking that this man would be a part of my life forever; even the thought of not having him in my life just didn’t make sense to me. However, he was 3.5 years older than me–making it impossible for us to date. Both of our parents would never have approved. So we both went on with our lives. We found other people and tried to make it work.

But the truth was that there wasn’t anyone else that was suited for me as well as he was…and so it turns out, the feeling was mutual. With him, I was free to be myself; it was incredibly liberating. He is sensitive when he needs to be but can always bring a smile to my face, no matter what my state of mind. Seriously, I have never laughed harder with another human being. He is always doing something ridiculous that is making me burst into laughter

Need proof? Just see below!

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But it hasn’t been all sunshine and rainbows. We have gone through a lot of life changes since that day we committed ourselves to one another.

Right after our wedding (literally) we went through the death of my Godmother, which was very sudden and happened the day we returned from our honeymoon. Then the death of Anthony’s father, which coincided with his birthday, only 100 days later.

These devastating losses coupled with my inability to find a teaching job in Michigan, opened up the door for us to come to Maui. Anthony was offered a job here and we felt that Michigan was giving us all the signs that it was time to leave.

So we sold most of what we owned (some of which is still in my parents’ basement–sorry Mom and Dad!) and moved 4500 miles away from anything and everyone we have ever known.

The first 6 months in Maui were the most trying months of our lives. Making new friends was harder than I remembered it being and those dang Hawaiian words–they all sounded the same! But we persevered and held on to the hope that things would get better. And slowly, they did.

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I found a teaching job, Anthony found a job that challenged him professionally, we found a sweet pup that filled our hearts with joy, we joined a paddling club that helped us meet new people and we learned to rely on one another. We learned there are more important things in life than climbing the ladder and being busy all the time. We learned to truly relax and appreciate what we have right now, not what we did have or may have in the future. Moving to Maui has made us stronger and better, both together and separately.

I’m lucky to have this guy by my side. He has supported me in all of my endeavors: including my next great adventure.

This May, I will say goodbye to my high school teaching position at H.P. Baldwin High School and say hello to photography full time.

While I am sad to leave behind my great co-workers and amazing students, I am excited for this new chapter in my life.

And I know that my dear, sweet husband will once again, stand by me as I navigate the world of business full time and experience the growing pains that every business owners is bound to feel. And the best part? He will probably keep me laughing through it all.

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To my dear husband on our five year anniversary: thank you for supporting me, loving me, trusting me, and always making me laugh. It is my prediction that the next five years will be even better.


**photo credit: wedding photos by Amanda Williams Photography, one year and five year anniversary pictures by Jenna Michelle Photography

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