Raising Magnolias

Because it's never too late for happily ever after…

15 Years Ago This Week

OK, so.

Y’all know that I love dates. I love to say things like, “One year ago this week.”

Two years ago this week.


15 years ago this week.

We said, “I do.”

And our marriage was crumbling at 13. (And 10 and 11 and 12)

And our marriage was over at 14.

And I was OK.

But there is something about 15.

15 years.


And I met my husband when I was 22. So if you’re one for math, that’s 18 years.

My entire adult life.

And again, if you’re one for numbers, I’m 40.

With 2 children.

And starting over.

After 18 years.

And I’m scared. And excited. And super sad.

And I’m blessed. And mad. And forever grateful.

And I.



No I’m not.

Yes I am.

It depends on the day.

It depends on the hour.

So I dug through some boxes and I found my wedding dress. I had a beautiful wedding dress.

And ring. Like, seriously. I loved my ring. I may start wearing it again.

Just because it’s beautiful.

And it sparkles.

And I love to sparkle.

Coulter had to help, but we got it zipped and my eyes, damp and weary, told the truth.

That this is all I have to celebrate.

A wedding dress that still fits. (And HALE YEAH, it fits!) 🙂

A princess dress with a princess bride who promised I do and I will and I can but he didn’t and I won’t and I can’t and

Praise Jesus.

His mercies are new.

Every morning.


I didn’t but He will.

I couldn’t but He can.


And make all things new.

Last night I was putting Emma Claire to bed.

She rubbed and scrubbed  and I thought her eyes would just pop right out and I wondered at what age do children stop rubbing their eyes and in an instant  it’s over and in a blink they’re gone and I lay (lie?) there holding and singing and praying and she turns to me and she says—

“Mom. You are perfect for me.”

“And you, Emma Claire, are perfect for me.”

And what I heard next sounded scary and future-y and very much like a 16 year-old-valley girl.

“Cause, like yeah. Like, if it weren’t for you I wouldn’t have been born. And if it weren’t for me, you wouldn’t have been born.

And we need to work out the kinks in that last part but, yes!

If it weren’t for you.

If it weren’t for I do’s.

If it weren’t for grace.

Raining  freely each day.

If it weren’t for a God.

Who makes all things new.

Beauty from ashes.

If it weren’t for You.


Thursday,  Emma Claire will play dress up and Coulter will roll eyes and we will dance in the tulle and remember the day.

And celebrate.

Not 15 years.

But 15 years ago this week.

Not 15 years.

But 2, like, seriously remarkable children and the miraculous and redeeming work of a Holy God.

summer 2012 018

And His steadfast love which, like, ya know, endures forever.

Maybe it sounds better when Emma Claire does the valley thing?

It’s hard to celebrate and the joy gets hidden and I struggle to choose it and claim it and take it  because this is just not what happily every after was supposed to look like.

 But Emma Claire, child of mercy and light sparkling bright says,

“Mom! Don’t forget!”

I was made for you.

You are perfect for me.

And when He chose you for me.

And when He chose me for you. He knew.



Where you would be.

15 years after 15 years ago this week.

He knew and He knows and He says.

Just this:

“I will repay you for the years that the locust have eaten….you will praise the name of the Lord your God who has worked wonders for You.” Joel 2:25-27

taught to fly

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One thought on “15 Years Ago This Week

  1. SUSIE Fangmeier on said:

    Well 15 years and 3 weeks ago, this week, I to said “I do”. We are still happily married, but I’m sad you are not. What I did need to hear tho, was your exchange with your precious daughter, and about the locusts, and the something to stand on or learn to fly:) Thanks for being the messenger:)

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