They say that it takes seven years for all the cells in your body to replace themselves. On average, people who grow old together spend anywhere from 40 to 50 years together. That’s seven to eight new people in one relationship. Today marks eight years that my boyfriend Chad and I have been together. So it’s pretty much like I’m dating a whole new person.
When I met Chad, he didn’t like mushrooms, told me he was allergic to lettuce [because he didn’t like it], and had never read a book. We were both 17 years old, clueless, and had no idea what we were getting into. Since then, we’ve been through pretty much everything a person can be. Oh, and I’ve gotten him hooked on new foods, lettuce doesn’t scare him, and he’s officially read one and a half books.
I am, essentially, dating a completely new man, and he is dating a new me.
Growing old together is a great concept. I don’t want to act like I know it all after only eight years, but I will admit that growing old together is hard. We bloom where we are planted and at our own speed, but it takes watering to get us there. That’s what Chad is for me.
He’s seen me through all my ugly haircuts, terrible makeup phases, and every bad outfit. [Seriously though, major kudos for him for sticking with me even when I decided not to wear makeup at our junior prom.] But, more importantly, he’s stood by me through every hard decision and tough time.
When we first started dating, our biggest concern was what color scheme to wear to the prom. Now, we’re focussed on starting a life together. That, my friends, is the start of growing old together. It’s scary and wonderful and makes me want to smile and cry all at the same time.
I wouldn’t be the person that I am today without Chad. The lessons he’s taught me about everything from working out to stepping out of my comfort zone are irreplaceable. It’s been a wild ride and I wouldn’t want to go through it with anyone else.
It’s hard to wrap up eight years in a blog post, but I tried my best. There are glamorous sides to being in a long-term relationship, but it’s the hard work that deserves to be spotlighted the most. Here’s to who we are, who we will be, and who we’ve been.