Congratulations! Nine years of marriage is an incredible milestone.
That’s a long journey to take with anybody and a real testament to your love for each other.
Good for you!
You’ve learned the things that help you grow closer, as well those that don’t.
You know how to keep your romance alive.
Now it’s time to celebrate your anniversary.
There are certain gifts that are traditionally given on one’s ninth anniversary.
In the United Kingdom, it’s copper – while in the United States, it’s either willow or pottery.
To complicate matters even further, there is also the modern choice of leather.
Alternately, you can give your spouse something that is terracotta-colored or made with the beautiful blue stone, lapis lazuli.
Your husband or wife may love receiving gifts.
If so, you may already know what you will give.
But if you can’t seem to find the perfect thing, it might be that you’re buying for someone who has a different love language, and who therefore may not fully experience the giver’s affection when they open presents.
This makes sense if you think about it.
Human beings have different pasts and different childhoods.
In fact, 10 years ago, Dr. Gary Chapman wrote that there are five love languages.
Today there are online tests you can take that will reveal which belong to your and your spouse.
Most people have both a primary and a secondary love language, so for a greater chance of success, why not combine the two of them?
If you were to give the traditional gift of pottery, for example, you could write about how it belongs to the earth because that is its origin.
Then, if you come from one of the three major monotheistic religions, Christianity, Judaism, or Islam, you could reference the Adam and Eve story, in which the two of them were created out of the earth.
They recognized each other as coming from the same substance, and rejoiced!
In the same way, you and your spouse felt awe when your hearts and bodies first connected. You were amazed at how well you fit together. And you’ve continued to connect through life’s peaks and valleys for nine years.
You have become part of a greater whole that allows each of you to shine more brightly than you had alone. Here are the best ways to capture that.
Use your words
Express your love through beautiful words to elevates your gift. This is important because many of us need to hear the words “I love you” in order to feel them.
If “words of affirmation” is your partner’s main love language, you may want to look to the master of love poetry, Pablo Neruda.
In his poem, “The Potter,” Neruda talks about how the beloved is an essential fit with oneself, in the same way, that a piece of pottery longs for the earth from which it came.
You could sit down with your spouse, read the poem, and then talk about all the ways he or she is an essential fit with you and in life, you have created together.
Bring a box of tissues, because when you say the right thing to someone who feels your love through words, tears will follow.
Good ones, though.
Show love through your actions
If your partner experiences love through acts of service, follow the theme of pottery by washing and organizing the pottery in the kitchen, then wipe down the inside and outside of the cabinets while you’re in there.
Check the storage of your mugs and look to see if you can hang with cup hooks to create more space. How about the wine glasses?
You could buy a little rack to hang them or you could make one yourself with a few dowels, a drill, and some blocks of wood.
Creating a better system for ceramic mugs and glasses will make life in your household easier to manage and may even give you more storage space.
It will also result in a happier spouse!
Spend time together
If your partner feels most loved when you spend quality time together, order some edible clay and coil-build some pots together before firing them in your oven.
Then use the pots to start little seedlings, a symbol of the way the solidness of your relationship gives new life to you and then to the world.
If you have time for a bigger project and you have space outdoors, build your own ceramic pizza oven together and cook up some pizzas!
Eat them under the stars or in front of a roaring fire.
“The River Cottage Bread Handbook” has detailed instructions.
Focus on the physical
Finally, if your partner’s love language is physical touch, try this out. Watch the movie “Ghost,” featuring Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore.
Focus on the sexy scene where they throw a pot together.
Many couples have wanted to try this but have not had the wherewithal to do so.
Now, this is your chance – it’s your anniversary and your partner will remember this day for a long time!
Go down to your local ceramic studio and ask if you can have a private lesson followed by time alone at the potter’s wheel.
After learning the basics, sit down on the bench, line your body up with your beloved’s, and try to throw a pot together.
Don’t be afraid to laugh!
Then come home and watch a couple of parodies of the movie scene.
You deserve it.
Congratulations on your ninth wedding anniversary!