Always drinking his coffee. Always reading the news online, checking the scores of whatever sport is in season. Depending on the time of year, sometimes I’ll find him grading quizzes. But it’s always coffee. Always reading. Always preparing for some type of workout.
A long tempo run. A grueling track workout. A recovery swim. Or race day.
Coffee, reading, and running. Such simplicity. To look at him, you’d almost think he was a bit boring, a bit “vanilla”. You’d never know he was the strongest person you might ever meet.
This is my husband. Twenty years ago today, he nursed his last hangover and got himself sober. Twenty years ago, he tackled the greatest challenge of his life, and came out on top.
I never knew Scott, the partying alcoholic, but boy, have I heard the stories. He got sober the year before we met and fell in love. The only Scott I’ve ever known is the disciplined, sober one. The one who exchanged one addiction for another, and became the most insane runner we’ve all ever known. The one who keeps life “vanilla”. Gosh, I love this man.
But falling in love with him came with its own cost. He was honest and up front with me from the very start, as he was newly sober. He couldn’t be around alcohol, nor could he be around anyone who drank. It was a deal breaker.
I was completely smitten with him, and so it was a no brainer for me. I knew immediately that I’d never need a drink the way I would need his company. I’d never find a party more fun than our “party of two” (or now five). He was worth walking away from alcohol for life. He still is.
I know this isn’t my typical blog post. I’m used to writing about girl stuff, mom stuff, photography stuff. But every year, on July 2, a few of us stop to celebrate our hero.
I know his parents do. Twenty years later, and still every year on July 2 a card comes in the mail from Scott’s mom and dad. They celebrate him. They love him. They are so so so proud of him. They knew the Scott I never knew. I think the contemplation and the celebration go deep for them.
I know Scott stops on this day, too. I think he sometimes thinks about the life he could have had, had he not climbed that mountain twenty years ago. I notice him looking at our kids, at me. I think he knows what a gift he’s been given in the second chance. The way he treats our family, I know he is thankful for it.
And today I stop. I look at the man I’ve always known, and I am so grateful. I look at the children we are raising together, and I’m just overwhelmed that they have such a strong, courageous, vulnerable father. Our kids know Scott’s story. They know what a hero their dad is.
So today I break from the typical mom blog post. Today I celebrate the greatest person I have ever known in my entire life. Obviously, we don’t clink champagne glasses over this one. In fact, I’ll never ever clink a champagne glass with my husband. We’ll never get tipsy together, never enjoy a “buzz” together.
But that’s ok. Because of his strength, we’ll get to enjoy much more more.
You are absolutely the best.