17 ways to know you’ve been married to the right man for 17 years

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1.  He looks at you the same way whether you’re in a négligée, a sweat suit, or a cat suit.

2. When you gain 50 pounds the first year you’re married and the nurse practitioner says honey you can’t just eat everything you see and you go home red-faced and ashamed and it isn't until you feel what you can only describe as a pop in your side that you request an ultrasound and they find a tumor on your adrenal gland pumping out cortisol and  moon face and buffalo hump, Cushing’s Disease and your husband changes the bandages around your 13 inch stapled wound that wraps around your side and still calls you beautiful.

3.  After a full day in the woods you can conduct tick checks on each other where the sun don’t shine.

4. He tells you with real joy he’s figured out that if he gently strokes your forehead up then down you’ll stop snoring just long enough for him to fall sleep.

5. When you’re sure he’ll leave you because you’ve ended up in the hospital again for another surgery again and you have to miss half of beach week, the last one where he'll see his father alive, instead of leaving you he brings you a dozen purple roses and stays by your side at the hospital.

6. He drops everything and comes to change your tire in the Target parking lot 4 minutes after you’ve yelled at him for being a slob.

7. If he turns his head when you’re walking down the street, it’s to check out a car, not a woman.

8. For your first Valentine’s Day he has a star in the Cygnus constellation named after you in the International Star Registry and it’s the last certificate with your maiden name.

9. When your son gets made fun of in Kindergarten for wearing a purple backpack to the bus stop he accompanies him the next day wearing hot pink.

10. He builds a set of wooden stairs up to the bed for your elderly cat.

11. You sob together and hold each other when you have to make the wretched decision to put down your beloved dog.

12. He reminds you a little bit of all four of your parents but not too much of any of them.

13. Even though he speaks the language of wire and you speak the language of books you both speak the language of the body.

14. He convinces you to stop everything and go to the hospital when you say you haven’t felt the baby move for a while even though you have the stupid idea that you have to finish the filing.

15. You’ve both been on your way out the door but have had the humility to walk, run, or crawl back in.

16. One adrenal gland, one rib, one gallbladder, six miscarriages and one uterus later he still sees you as his dream girl and a whole woman.

17.  He tells you when you write your book you have his permission to tell the entire story, not to leave a single word out.