Andrei and I had our 5th wedding anniversary this summer. Sophia was already 5 days late at that point, so we went on a (last?) date.
I also came to the realization that we've been together 6 years (more about that sometime), while I've lived in Russia for 12 years...
...6 years with Andrei and 6 "without" (though he was a good friend).
...6 years as a single missionary, 1 courting, and 5 years as the wife of a preaching elder.
...7 years in children's ministry, and 5 with my own little cherub.
My perception is that the first 6 years went by much more slowly, and the second 6 sped by. Life was busy and hectic as a single missionary in a big city, but days could also drag by as I wondered what would happen next...and most of all, whether I would get married. I had all the time in the world, but waited eagerly. I couldn't believe it took a whole 6 years to start dating, and now suddenly another 6 have passed????
They say time seems to go faster if you have kids, which makes sense considering all the milestones to keep track of. No year is the same, and you can never go backwards. In David's first year or two, we used to celebrate each new month of his life! And in just a few months, Sophia will be a completely different person.
When I feel sad about time passing quickly, I remind myself that we've ONLY been married 5 years and have only just scratched the surface of all life has to offer.
I was rereading "Letters to Karen" which I read while we were engaged. I think it is one of my favorite books on marriage because it has biblical values without being preachy. It's just personal anecdotes with advice from a father to his daughter, in letter format (hence the title).
I like this quote about continuing to get to know someone as you journey through life together:
"The beauty of a partial knowledge is what makes life with your loved ones so fascinating. It could exhaust you if you let it. But it can also keep your heart singing with the thrill of just being alive." (Shedd, p. 17 Kindle Edition)
It's a good reminder to go back to focusing on others in the way that courting couples focus on each other. "How can I make this person happy?" vs. "How can I make him/her understand me?" And of course, fuller knowledge of the Savior as a goal rather than being satisfied with what we already know. If you think you know someone, think again...or better yet, ask some questions.