I can still remember meeting Kate for the first time, on my porch in Somerville, Massachusetts, back in April of 2002. At the time, there were a lot of things I didn’t know about her, and couldn’t have known to consider:
* She's a phenomenal spouse and partner. We have weathered 6 moves together, a medical crisis, a career change, the arrival of two children, extended exposure to each other's parents, dead pets and live ones... and through it all, we still manage to crack each other up with fart jokes. Did I know that humor, resilience and a shared love of Guster would be the hallmarks of a decade together when I first looked at her? I did not. * She makes awesome children. Seriously, every day I think we reach some new plateau for having fun with our kids, and each day we surpass it. Sydney finds Trio's ["Da Da Da"](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lNYcviXK4rg&feature=related) hilarious, and god help us, Piper has gotten us all into bopping in the kitchen to that [terrible, terribly catchy Taylor Swift thing](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gcMn_Eu-XTE). But when the four of us are all shaking it and singing along (Sydney contributes by upping the sound energy in the room), it's hard to imagine a better moment. Would I have predicted a grudging enjoyment of Taylor Swift 10 years ago? (Was Taylor Swift even born 10 years ago?) I would not. But here we are. * She's an artful parent. She cajoles and chuckles and frustratedly counts to three and levies time-outs and hugs and bandages and tears her hair out in frustration and loves our kids all the same. Couldn't have known that in advance; managed to luck out there again. * She eats my food, though it features less meat than she might choose. She sighs and copes with my mental block on folding just-dried laundry. She watches me chase my misplaced sunglasses around the house and doesn't point and laugh. She has encouraged me to write code, change careers, play the games and lose the sleep in order to chase the things I'm seeking ... even if some of those things aren't wise or make no sense. Did I predict years of support from her while we were watching Donnie Darko on my couch? Hell no, but I got it anyhow.
All of which is to say: I’ve never been with anyone for 10 years before, but it’s been a phenomenal ride thus far. I cannot wait to see what the next 10 will bring, and what I can’t possibly predict now.
Happy birthday, K.