Monday, July 20, 2015

Now if only I could grow a proper beard.

A lot is going on right now.

Once upon a time, I had a job working at Sal and Mookie's. I often worked as a server assistant (or "SA"–basically a bus boy). I and a couple of my friends were hired before the restaurant opened, so we were part of the process of working out the kinks in a new restaurant. One of those kinks centered around the dishes.

We had two guys who washed the dishes, and they did a great job, but there were just too many dishes, and so the only way they could really keep up is if the servers and SA's broken down the bus bins for them, sorting dishes and throwing away trash. I've always been a pretty earnest worker when at a job, so whenever I brought back a bus bin, I would break it down. While I was breaking it down, sometimes other people would bring other bus bins back, and since I was already there, they would just leave it for me. Sometimes this would result in an hours-long, ongoing battle with increasingly large piles of bus bins, where as fast as I broke them down more and more kept coming.

That's sort of how I feel right now, except instead of dirty dishes and half eaten food, I'm overwhelmed with this unending stream of wonderful things. From time to time I've started blog posts, but before I can really get into it I get distracted by something amazing and then by the time I get back to it, several other awesome things have happened.

So if somehow my blog is the only place you go for updates about my life, welcome back. I'm married. Surprise!

I still intend to fully document the entire story with how I met, fell in love with, and married Chloe but I don't think now is quite the time for that. The wedding went shockingly well, considering we planned it in a month while we were both working full time on the other side of the country. Honestly it was a bit of a miracle that was only possible because of how many amazing people we have in our lives who were willing to go to great lengths to help us out.

Right now I'm actually in Boston for research (which is why I'm up at midnight updating my blog instead of in bed with my very cozy wife). Grad school is treating me exceedingly well. I got a really cool grant that will have me working with a lot of engineering folks and should make for some fascinating projects. In Boston I'm learning how to make carbon fiber electrodes, which is not quite as glamorous as it sounds. Most of the process involves moving tiny tiny strands of carbon fiber around with sticky notes. It turns out that a lot of the coolest science is pretty mundane in practice, but we should be able to learn some cool stuff.

Chloe is rocking her summer performances. Sappy bragging about my wife doesn't really fit into the feel of my blog, but I love watching her dance. It's great.

Being married is not quite what I expected.

Marriage (photo credit Ellie Hall)
On the one hand, it all feels very normal. I essentially feel just like I always have: I still don't feel grown-up enough to be married (or in grad school, or for anything in my life), and marriage itself mostly just feels like a date that doesn't stop. Living with Chloe is profoundly natural, as though this is just what we do and we've always done it.

On the other hand, marriage is so much more than I ever expected. I didn't realize I could love someone so completely and how wonderful it could be to be loved. I didn't know how safe I could feel with someone, even when allowing myself to be completely exposed. I didn't know how easy it would be to give up anything for someone, and how little I would be asked to give up.

And it makes everything else a little different too. I work harder and more willingly in the lab. I no longer have this constant itch to run out and find fun times; I can just stay home and hang out with Chloe and that feels like a great night. (It turns out I still need to get out and run around from time to time, if I stay home every night I get a little crazy.)

So that's marriage, turns out it was worth the wait.

Other than that, this summer I've had a great time doing research, I went to Canada (also for science), I had an amazing trip out west, and I'm about to have another one. Hanging out with Kate and Logan (and Spencer and Sam) has been a blast, and I'm about to retire this macbook that I bought when starting at BYU. It's gotten me this far, but I'm excited to have a computer that can keep up with grad school.

All in all, my life is more perfect than I had ever hoped it could be. I'm sure there will be all sorts of bumps ahead, but I think things are going to be fantastic.

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