New Years Eve J and I were driving home from his sister's and realized east on the 56 was not the direction we wanted to go. We were in separate cars and I tried to get his attention that I was going west.

Finally I called (on speakerphone!) and said, "I need the ocean, but I'm not sure where to go from here. Will you come with me?" 

He smiled from the next lane at the red light and said, "I know where to go."

He pulled in front of me and we went toward the sunset, then up the coast to Del Mar Beach. 

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Seven and a half years ago it's where we shared our first kiss. Six years and five days ago it's where he gave me a ring and said he wanted to grow old with me.

Del Mar Beach is only a little significant to me.

So it only makes sense that it's where this story should end on New Years Eve 2015. 

The sunset was gorgeous that night. Such a deep orange. And the ocean was the very definition of navy blue, the waves came in strong with their bubbly white edges.

We sat with our son and our dog and just smiled. 

Then J said, "This feels like the end of a movie.

"This is where it all started and now we're back, as a family. And we're happy."

It just needed the perfect song to finish the soundtrack. 

I said, "I think it is the end of a movie."

He looked a little puzzled, as I'm sure you're thinking the same thing he probably was: But the story isn't over.

Donald Miller says story is where there is a character who wants something and overcomes conflict to get it. That means conflict is an essential part of any good story.  

I said: 

"Just because the movie ends, doesn't mean there isn't life to be lived after. Who knows, maybe the next part will be good enough for a sequel. In the last 6 years we've had some pretty amazing ups, followed by some lows and some straight-out-hells." (Including but not limited to: the miscarriage and the depression.)

"Then we started working things out, getting things right." (That's the overcoming conflict part.)

"Then we had Noah." (That's the getting what we want part.)

"An ending doesn't get much better than that. Maybe this is the end of that story. Maybe the next story will be entirely new."  

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No promises it won't have lows and straight out hells, but that is what will make it a story worth telling.

2016, here's to new.

Love, 
the Hagens

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