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She asked again. It was the third time in less than an hour yet I still answered with yes. I lost count of the overall total somewhere along the way; I lost count of just how many times she’s asked me to marry her and how many times I responded with varying degrees of absolutely. She smiles when she asks and I smile when I answer and while it feels like a game to me, it seems like a life to her.

“Stop telling her yes,” says her mother, my wife, the one I married. “Tell her why you can’t.”

I don’t have the strength to break her heart. I’m weak when it comes to her, those brown eyes that light up every time she crawls in my lap and puts her head on my shoulder and wraps her tiny fingers around one of my own. I’m weak and so I oblige her requests more often than not including but not limited to every proposal where she’s asked me to be her husband.

“Do you know what it means to be married?” I ask her. “Do you know what a marriage is?”

She ran her hand through the braid in her hair, letting her fingers feel the sections of over-under holding her shoulder length strands together. She blinked and her eyelashes played catch with the tops of her cheeks and she looked up letting her eyes drift towards the upper right corner of the room. She let out a slight hum as I pictured tiny wheels turning in her head while she collected her thoughts.

“It means you love somebody so much that you want to love them forever,” she said.

I looked at her, my three year old, and let the simple explanation she offered float and settle around us. I looked at her mother and saw my daughter’s smile, decades later, stretch across her face and I knew she thought the same thing. Until she discovers a definition stating otherwise, I’ll continue answering yes whenever she asks because there's no question that I love her enough to make it forever.

8 comments

  1. I absolutely love this and that braid is to die for!!

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    1. Thanks, Natasha! I can't take credit for the braid though... she got that from her mama.

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  2. This is the sweetest. You better not ever say no. ;)

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    1. Thanks! As long as she's asking, I'm saying yes.

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  3. Ah, made me teary!!! What a beautiful definition for marriage she gave. Very articulate!

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    1. I couldn't have said it better myself! She's the best.

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