Yesterday was Lolly's birthday. She turned 35. I have known her since I was 3 and she was 5. So that's 30 years. 30 years of knowing one of the most amazing people on this planet.
I'm freaking lucky.
Here, in no particular order, are 35 things I love about Lolly Shea.
1. She has an obsession with blue plastic. Especially globes that are blue and plasticky. She loves it so much when she sees it she says she almost craves to eat it.
2. She is really smart. When she was invited to skip a grade in elementary school she didn't want to be the youngest in her class when everyone was turning 16 and able to date, so she decided against it. That decision is what made sure we were only one grade apart, which in many ways is what led us to falling in love.
3. She is beautiful. Inside and out.
4. She loves to talk. And everything she says is interesting to me.
5. She is also one of the best listeners I've ever met. This is what helped me to open up to her at crucial times.
6. Her pain threshold is way higher than mine. When we used to do circuit training together she put me to shame.
7. She loves Halloween. A lot.
8. She also loves every other Holiday, and makes each one special. Without it, I would probably just let them slide by without much fanfare, and then I'd really regret it.
9. She's very clever. What she says and does never ceases to delightfully surprise me, which I really appreciate. I'm never bored with her around, ever.
10. She is always willing to sing for me, even when she doesn't know the tune.
11. She is hot. Good body, good hair, looks good without makeup. She is exactly the type of woman that I wanted/needed.
12. She is so patient with me. And she's really nice about it.
13. She's also very appreciative as I slowly learn how to do things that come really easily to other people. (Like navigating the complex geography of Provo, UT. That kind of thing.)
14. I really like her taste in clothes and fashion. She's also a really good artist.
15. Her favorite pastimes are to eat and talk. My favorite pastimes are to eat and talk. It works out well.
16. She is fearless. When she knows something is right, she will do it without hesitation. She knows how to do hard things.
17. Her faith in God is pristine, and her connection to him is very deep and very apparent. He loves her a lot. When she prays He listens. When He speaks to her, she listens. And then she does what she knows she should do. I would not be married to her today without that pure, genuine connection.
18. Related: when talking about getting answers to prayers she'll often say things like "And then Heavenly Father told me...[miraculous insight]..." I love that her relationship with God is so personal.
19. She is the best. possible. mother. to our three daughters.
20. When she decides to change something about herself, she goes for it full throttle. And it sticks.
21. She isn't afraid to admit if she's wrong. She's also not afraid to stand her ground when she's right.
22. She can entertain an entire roomful of people with her storytelling. I admire that in a person because I kind of suck at it.
23. She is incredibly thoughtful and concerned about others.
24. She is also very healthy--she doesn't get wrapped up in problems that are not intended for her. She has very naturally clear boundaries. (The therapist in me really appreciates this.)
25. She is accepting of everyone and always has been. If you are a human being, she will accept you and love you. No matter what. In a way that is special.
26. You will never meet a person who says "I'm sorry" more than Lolly. I remark on this quality in one of her junior high yearbooks, and it's still the case. Literally, I'm not kidding, as I wrote this sentence she yelled in an "I'm sorry" for something. It's totally endearing.
27. She is ambitious, but in the perfect way--in a way that's totally true to herself and her own self-improvement. It's never about what anybody else thinks.
28. She is the best editor a blogger could ever ask for. She is the perfect litmus test for whether things are funny, and she is also a very good copy-editor. She provides really good ideas for blog posts, and then can tell when they've been well-executed. I rarely post something before passing it by her first.
29. She's good at pretty much anything she decides to do.
30. She is not overly conventional. She's the type of girl who contemplates one day the idea of doing an entire semester of school abroad, and the very next day is getting her passport. She is spontaneous and not afraid to do things that people might consider weird or risky if she feels good about it.
31. She is also very traditional in a lot of ways--but not to conform to outside institutions.
32. She's generally unconcerned about what people think of her. Which allows her to be the wonderful woman she is. She naturally does what she does in a very congruent, true-to-herself way.
33. She loves me unconditionally. She fell in love with me when I was a 300 pound gay kid who hadn't gone on a mission and had no idea what he was going to do with his life. That love has never shifted to any degree as the years have passed and I have lost weight, grown up, and found my path.
34. She is a great cook.
35. She is selfless and wonderful and everything I've ever wanted in a partner. I cannot imagine my life without her. She is everything to me.
I don't know if a husband has ever been more in love with his wife than I love my Lolly.
Happy birthday sweet girl!
This is my all-time favorite picture of Lolly. I love it because she looks gorgeous and sultry, but what you can't tell looking at the picture is that she and I were totally joking around and having fun, and this was her being ridiculously silly. I love all that this picture represents about her. (It's in Cafe Rio, which she loves. It shows her deep blue eyes. Her love for me. We're having fun. We're eating food. She's drinking water to be healthy. Etc, etc. etc.)