So that's the thing about the show, and the real life parenthood thing: it's so hard. It is gut wrenching, soul-giving work, that somehow, despite the sheer WORK of it all, brings incomprehensible joy. This is why the show, Parenthood, is likely my favorite show on television at the moment.

Spoiler(ish)-alert: in tonight's episode, Zeek (the patriarch of the Braverman clan), goes to his daughter's husband (from whom she is separated) and says, "When I walked Julia down the aisle, I gave her to you. I took you on as a son because I knew, and I still know, that that guy is the guy for her. So as you figure stuff out, could you try a little harder." A paraphrase, but man was it beautiful.

And beautifully heartbreaking for me.  You see, I, along with so many other people, don't have a dad. I don't have someone that would show up for the hardest parts of LB and I's marriage and give him a loving, stern, talk about his responsibility to me as his wife. I don't have anyone who is giving me away to LB.

What I do have, however, are the following three things:

1. I have my loving, understanding, hilarious, amazing, lovely, faithful, and beautiful friends to give me away. Next to LB, there is no one, and I mean NO ONE, who knows the insides of my soul like they do.

2. I have US: the LB + Treans combo that has been grown over the past 6 years. The US is what is giving me away to LB... the US is what allows me to trust LB with every part of my soul going forward. And the US is what I cannot wait to give to our kids so that they won't have to say, I don't have a dad to give me away at my wedding. Because, listen future sons and daughter-in-law, LB and I both will be there to root you on through your marriages. Tough love and all.

3. I have God. I take comfort in the fact that whatever form I think God takes on a given day, that I know that my God, the one who I know intimately, has guided me towards LB from the beginning. I have always said that I am CONVINCED that God assigned me a guardian angel from birth. Just mine. Cause, let's be serious, I am not that great at sharing and God knows that.

I am not going to say that I would take my 3 substitutes over a real dad, because I have never had the experience of having one. But what I will say, is that I cannot wait for this journey of parenthood, so that I can watch LB become a real dad and I can figure out all the gloriously hard work that goes into it.

What Do You Need From Me Today?

Inspired, as I often am, my momastery's gorgeous articles on life, humor, faith, and love, I feel compelled to make a faithfulness commitment to LB. This morning, Glennon wrote on how asking the right/better questions instead of the generic ones can mean the difference between really knowing your spouse and just co-existing. And, y'all, moving is stressful. Renovating is stressful. Transitions are especially stressful for me (childhood memories of moving were AWFUL and I did it all the time). So, I can't think of a better time to ask LB: What do you need from me this week? When did I make you feel loved today? When did you feel lonely today? And other questions that jump out to him as me saying that I REALLY CARE what happened during his day that made him feel one way or another. Because we just all want to be cared for and know that someone is concerned with giving us what we need today, this week, and for the years to come.