New Year’s Eve is the five year anniversary of the day my husband and I really met.

We went to college together, Sarah Lawrence, and I knew of him in a vague sort of way. This is a college of 1200 students, about 2/3 of them women, and he’s a 6’7″ redheaded songwriter and basketball player, so everyone knew of him. We also had some mutual friends. But beyond that, we were strangers. I only have three clear memories of him from college.

The first was when he came to an art show I was having. It was only a two person show, so there were a lot of people there who were trying to talk to me (as I represented half of the artwork in the gallery), and I’m just a shy girl at heart, and hate that stuff. So I was relieved when he stopped me and said, very quietly, “Thank you.” And nothing else. It was a still moment, and a welcome one.

The second was seeing him play a basketball game, as one of the other guys on the team was the boyfriend of a good friend of mine. I don’t know much about basketball, but he towered over the other guys on the court.

The third was near graduation, when there was some sort of all night music circle going on, and he was playing his guitar, and singing. I was (and am) struck by how effortlessly he can perform his songs for people, as easily as if he was having a quiet conversation.

After graduation, I spent three months in Virginia waiting to begin graduate school. A friend mentioned that they had a CD of his music, and offered to make me one, but then realized they did not have the capacity to copy CDs at the time. So I wrote a letter asking for a CD, and looked up his address in the college facebook thing. No dice. It only said his name, and Tucson, Arizona.

A quick google search produced about 20 people with his last name in Tucson, and none with his first name. So, figuring that they might be related, I picked the one with the best name (Buz), and as luck would have it, it was his father.

We wrote back and forth for months. He sent the CD, and I sent a painting. And then he came cross-country to visit some mutual friends in NYC for New Year’s, and stopped on New Year’s Eve on his way north to pick me up. We visited as much as we could through the first year of graduate school, and by the second, he had moved in with me.

We have the boxes of our letters on our bookshelf today, and sometimes I read them. Every time I do, I feel incredibly lucky.

He’s brilliant, and peaceful, and loving. He didn’t hesitate for a split second when I got diabetes three months before our wedding. He slept in the hospital with me every night.

So today I’d like to celebrate Daniel, whom I love.