refusing to give up on their journey together

writing by chesley westerlund and richard thompson



listen to these tunes while you scroll!

“we all have different needs in a relationship, ones that we need to receive and those that we are able to give. rich has a way of not only meeting my needs, but exceeding all expectations. he provides such a supportive and loving foundation for us to grow together. we’re not perfect, no one is – but we have the freedom and understanding that we don’t have to have it all together right in this moment. we’re on a journey together. no relationship is perfect, we just refuse to give up.”

“richard. this man, i gush simple saying his name. i feel so cherished by him. he brings out the best in me each and everyday. he makes it a point to fully understand who i am and where i want to be in life. he lifts me up and encourages me so i can thrive in this world. he highlights my strengths and makes me feel like a warrior. richard empowers me and inspires me to love more deeply, see the world differently and live life to my full potential. he makes me feel beautiful, and worthy of true love. i can’t imagine life without him. he’s my best friend.”

“the moment this man walked into the room, i could feel his presence. it was overwhelming – in all the right ways. there was just something about him. my heart raced and i felt more alive simply talking to him. perhaps it wasn’t love at first sight, but i knew in that moment, there was something truly special about that man.” “i totally believe in love at first sight! the first time i met chels felt like fire in my chest….so much so that i came back to see her again the next day…it only took 5 more months for that feeling to become, “us!”

 “he lifts me up and encourages me so i can thrive in this world.”

“every couple has a different way of doing life together. there is no wrong or right way of living if it works for you.  rich has brought me closer to god than i’ve ever been. he’s made me see that love requires commitment and commitment requires abandoning our exit strategies. if we fully commit ourselves to believing in gods perfect plan for us. nothing can stop us or bring us down. we’re trusting in god. we won’t give up on each other should things get rocky. these are the moments where we learn about ourselves, and look to god to strengthen and guide us through.”

“true love is acceptance and understanding. a rare connection. allowing complete submission of your ego. putting yourself aside and feeling deeply for one another. to be unapologetically yourself and know you’re home in your lovers heart. we’re so lucky to be able to love. “if love were just an emotion, then god couldn’t command it. but love is something you do. it can produce emotion, but love is an action.” – rick warren”

“i feel like a healthy relationship needs to give back more to each person than than they feel they could possible put in…i guess, for us, I want that to mean that chels and i both feel like we’re the big winner in this.”
“if i had to choose to loose all of our old memories or never be able to makes new ones? that’s tough. i love our journey so far together. all of our firsts have been magical moments. but what our future together holds is so bright. a wedding, building a home together, children, growing old together.. i am so grateful for our memories. but together, rich and i make the most beautiful moments together. i can’t wait to see what the future holds for us.”

“when we are 90, i feel like what will matter most to us is that we feel love all around us. that we’ve never stopped living life as an adventure. that we’ve impacted lives around us for the better. we are simple. we have fun, we laugh and we love. with god as our center, we love deeply.”

​”i’m living in the fairytale i never knew i deserved. our relationship was an instant knowing that we were meant for each other. sitting across from each other on our first date, simply nodding and smiling. blown away in that moment, that we simply knew life was forever changed. that we’ve both found the one our hearts desired.”

“if we received enough money to never work again, i feel as though we would spend our time bettering others lives. to give is to love. to change others lives as a couple is a beautiful thing. we strive yo be an example to our children and other couples.”

“chelsey brings out so many good things in me, things i didn’t even know i had access to within myself…see, she has a habit of doing this to people who are lucky enough to do life with her. i’m just grateful to be doing life with her by my side.”

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finding your own identity and embracing who you are as a partner

writing by kiana mathew


turn those speakers up!

“i’m no expert on relationships, but i believe that one of the foundations to success in a relationship in your life is to first take the time to find out who the heck YOU are. gain confidence in yourself! it can be difficult to acknowledge your self worth at times. it was especially difficult for me to feel confident when i first moved out to seattle – a new and unfamiliar place. i was working several random part-time jobs (completely unrelated to my college major), nannying (best birth control ever), living across the country from my family and friends, and receiving calls from my parents every day to ask if i had changed my mind and wanted to become a doctor (the stereotype is REAL).”

“relationships are a lot of work, especially healthy ones.”

“fast forward three and a half years and we kind of have things ‘figured out’; we both work 9-5’s, have a roof over our heads, and can afford an Amazon Prime membership. I don’t believe that anyone really has it all ‘figured out’ – me and Ry have had points in our relationship where one of us has had to lean on the other and vice versa. A healthy relationship allows for give both ways, but balance is key! Like a pendulum, yeah?”

“relationships are a lot of work, especially healthy ones. you’ve gotta give everything you’ve got: love, honesty, dedication, time, patience, compromise, work, sacrifice (offering to do the dishes when the last thing you want to do on this earth is dishes), acceptance, and support. if you give all that you’ve got, you’re likely to get all of those amazing things back from a person that truly loves you.”

“humility. i’ve got a TON of faults and i get easily caught up in my big head. ryan has been key in learning more about myself by allowing me to laugh at the silly things that i do. he does a great job at putting things into perspective and bringing me back down to planet earth. ryan is a down-to-earth, intelligent, country boy that grew up with four sisters, so he knows drama better than TNT. ”

“one of my favorite things about ryan is that he does a great job at creating an event around simple daily routine things such as making dinner, doing the laundry, or watching a movie at home. when we’re not up late working on projects, meeting up with friends for dinner, or packing/unpacking for a ski trip, we take the time to carve out nights in our google calendars to be a “just us night”. we will listen to old records, new albums or podcasts and hang out all night in the kitchen. when we first moved in together, this was all we did. i feel like creating a ritual out of preparing and eating food helped us build up such a strong relationship and also a healthier diet (no more all-nighters of costco nutella).”

“we never go to bed mad at each other. no matter how petty it is, we never let whatever we’re upset about carry over into the next day. also, no matter how difficult it may be to verbalize feelings or exactly what you are upset about, facilitate conversation so that the issue is verbalized. take the time to figure out how to fix the issue before it becomes a problem that compounds on itself and isn’t addressed.”

“something that was a game changer in our relationship was finding a work schedule that is the same for both of us. we love spending time together, be it hanging out at home watching movies, coming up with silly business plans, skiing together, dancing on cap hill or going on road trips around washington; we are inseparable. we love spending time with our friends and we make it a priority to see them as often as possible and nurture those relationships. we hang out a lot! our friends call us RK since we do everything together and all of our texts are group texts.”

“we both love spending time outdoors and i hope that we will have done something in our lives that will help protect and preserve the earth that we live in. i hope that we have some fabulous rocking chairs / thrones that we can rock away and sit on to observe this beautiful earth that we live on.”

“if we never had to work again another day in our lives, we’d probably buy a p. diddy style yacht. obviously, ryan and i would be the captains of the boat. we would port our boat in different cities around the world and then go on trips from there. all of my best friends would have to come explore and party around the world full-time with us. i’d also be on a first name basis with pitbull aka “mr worldwide” and he will perform ‘tiny desk concerts’ on our yacht.”

“when ryan came out to visit me in seattle the first time, i was living in the central district and wanted to show him all of my favorite spots. one of our first dates we went on was riding the bus to ezell’s and ordering the hot and spicy fried chicken with the buttery buns.  actually, our first intentional couple picture was us holding a bag of fried chicken right in front of ezell’s (haha). we love ezell’s. we treat ourselves to their damn good fried chicken once a month. ryan usually will pop open the tailgate of his element to sit on and we’ll hang out in the parking lot nomming on fried chicken since we can’t wait any longer to eat it. ezell’s holds a special place in our hearts and bellies.”

“our apartment building is the most charming historic building, and it’s perfect for us. it took us forever to find when we were searching for our first official apartment together aka we were both going to be on the lease. it was built in 1926 (ryan says it was built in 1927) originally as a hotel, and was soon converted into apartments. everything has been restored with intention and care. we love all the little quirks within the building. the original refrigerator, which is just a cabinet with a thick door is still built into the kitchen. there is also a little compartment at the entry of our apartment where packages used to be delivered. oh, and there’s an ironing board that comes out of the wall right in the middle of the kitchen.”

“we love being able to walk just a few blocks to volunteer park in the summer for picnics when the days get long and popping into the conservatory when it’s open to. 15th st. is bustling with adorable small businesses and i love feeling like we are apart of a small community up here.  also, we’re walking distance from the pike/pine corridor for when we want to turn it up on the weekends 😉 it’s our little niche area within capitol hill that we’ve grown to love and see ourselves staying in the near future.”

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