Today is my husband, Paul’s, birthday. He is 26, which sounds pretty crazy if you ask me. I feel like 26 just sounds old. It sounds like “adult.”
I love celebrating people’s birthdays, but I particularly love celebrating Paul’s. I love giving gifts. I love taking out time specifically for people I cherish and focusing on what they contribute to the world. I enjoy making them sit at the table, awkward as it might feel, while friends and family go around in a circle showering the birthday boy or girl with kind words, making sure they hear exactly what all the things are we love about them. A friend of mine in college taught me that, a tradition of her family’s, and it is something I have carried on for every friend’s birthday since. Birthdays are the only holiday throughout the year a person gets to themselves. It doesn’t have to be narcissistic or self-consumed, although it certainly is done wrong in such ways, but rather, when done right, I believe birthdays to be God’s grace, giving us a day where we HAVE to be celebrated despite how underserving we are of praise and love at times. (And, no matter how much we might hate or fear it.) Plus, who doesn’t love birthday cake? Birthdays are a picture of how God loves us. It is a celebration of life, breath, and marking another year of purpose. As Paul’s wife it is my job, no matter what the day, to remind him of the things he is excels in. It is my job to affirm him and selflessly love him, but on his birthday this is especially so.
Paul had to have been one of a kind, because up until Paul, nobody was ever good enough for me for more than a week or two. I think my parents were starting to wonder if I would ever date at all. But since day one, I have always seen something more in Paul. If you haven’t caught on from watching us, Paul is extremely kindhearted and giving. He straight up spoils me, and he is really good at it. He is such a better person than me. He will drop literally anything he is doing if I call him and need help with something. He has made countless last minute runs to the grocery store for ingredients or lady stuff (sorry, boo), never uttering a single complaint. I once, in one of those weeks of overcommitment to everything possible, locked myself out of my running car in downtown Dallas while darting to a meeting. I called him, a frazzled mess, and before I was off the phone with him he was in his car on the way to rescue me. Paul is selfless. He loves giving gifts more than anyone I know. He takes time to analyze and review every product on the market until he finds the perfect one for whom he is buying a present. Paul is extremely cautious, and for this I am so grateful. Paul is aware in all public settings of exactly every person around us, this is something I love because it is a love a lot like my daddy’s. I think Paul secretly knows coordinates, like in Battleship, watching me as I move from one to the next, looking ahead for anything that might harm me. I know for a fact if we were ever in a bad situation, he would know before I even had the chance to process what was going on. He is the definition of protector, and I feel safe with Paul. He is selective with who he lets in, but the people he loves he knows extremely well. He knows what hurts them, he knows what they like or what makes them feel most loved. Paul is always sensitive to making sure everyone in a group feels welcome. Paul is love. He exudes it. He leaks out love onto everyone. He is that person in the grocery store line who is so talkative + sociable that I sometimes wish I had a less loving hubby… but no, not really. 😉 I am thankful for his kindness. Paul is good at all the things I am bad at. He can be nice to anybody. He is extremely observant and can talk to anyone (I am very jealous of this characteristic.) He ALWAYS tries to see the other person’s side no matter what the situation, even when I just want him to be angry with me. Even when all I want is for him to say, “Hannah, you’re right. That person sucks,” he instead pushes me to think about the bigger picture. He makes me a better person. In situations where I feel mistreated or frustrated I think, “How would Paul handle this?” He is gracious and understanding. Paul is tough, manly, and a newly founded football fan. (He grew up a hockey player). If you ever are wondering what you can get Paul, it is anything Nike. But, he is also gentle, sensitive, and a romantic comedy kind of guy. The Lord knew what he was doing when he put me with someone who cannot stand a scary movie commercial, let alone the actual thing. Paul is goofy. He is fun, easy going, and I can lay in bed with him for an entire day just laughing + making up jokes.
Paul Allen Morrison is handsome. Nothing else really needs to follow up that statement, because it’s pretty basic and definitely true.
Being married to Paul is the greatest choice I ever made. Our marriage isn’t perfect, we don’t nail communication, we don’t speak kindly to one another always. Truth is that if you are looking for perfection in a spouse, you will never be happy. But, if you are searching for someone that pushes you to be a better person, to look more like Jesus; someone who knows to get you sherbet ice cream when you are sick again; someone who runs you to Sprinkles Cupcakes when you have had a terrible day; someone who helps you think rationally despite how much you want to be irrationally angry; someone who gets giddy over a new planner and ways of organizing their closet; someone who eats sweet potato french fries daily; someone who can always get the new peanut butter jar open; someone who is easy to make smile; someone who is anxious to help; someone who tells you you’re beautiful when you just get home from the gym; someone who seeks to know the good in everyone… then I suggest you find a Paul Allen. You can’t have mine, sorry ladies, but I encourage you to look for someone like him. Be patient in the waiting if you haven’t met your Paul. It is worth the wait. I hope you get to experience marriage, and then the joy of writing out the attributes you love about your husband the most on his birthday. I hope you end up writing a long piece about him, because there was just too much to keep to a concise list.
Happy birthday, boo. You mean the world to me, and you impact every single person you come in contact with. Thank you for being my leader even when I am stubborn and impossible to lead. Thank you for being you.