Correction. I am head-over-heals-love-him-more-each-day-blessed-beyond-measure-happily married!
Ok, enough with the mushy stuff and on to the reason this post is titled, "here's to the men".
As I think over my journey of meeting my husband and everything leading up to that, there are a number of factors that I know contributed to finding this wonderful man. Everything from having a similar upbringing to great communication, are obviously apart of it. But I wanted to focus on one of (I believe) the key factors.
That's right, men. We (as women) have all had our fair share of experiences, both good and bad, with men. Whether we realize it or not, they have helped shaped our view of who we are as women and what we deserve in a boyfriend/spouse. This starts at childhood and goes into our teenage and young adult years. The statement, "you always end up with someone like you father" is more than often times true (obviously, not always), but I believe extends to other influential males in a females life.
I grew up with a wonderful example of how a man should treat a women. From a young age, my father instilled in me confidence in who I am as a women - always telling me I was beautiful (when, seriously, I had some super awkward years), intelligent, and deserving of the most wonderful man someday. I was taught to work hard and stand up for myself when needed. He treated my mother with love and respect. My brother (even though he was younger) has grown to be a healthy amount of protective, giving lots of hugs, telling me he loves me (so important to hear), and having a steady, gentle, and playful spirit. These two, along with a handful of male friends throughout middle and high school have shown me respect and friendship that I deeply value to this day. I sincerely believe that having male friends who treated me so well, is what set my standards high and helped me avoid a lot of heartache before meeting my wonderful husband, Jeffrey.
So here's to you, my dear friends, who have been apart of my journey. I am o-so-thankful for each and every one of you!