Happy Anniversary

This is Justin. I’m hijacking Shay’s blog today to wish her a happy anniversary. We’ve been married for fourteen years. Most of that time, she’s been battling synovial sarcoma, a rare and scary type of cancer. That disease exacts a heavy toll and demands a lot of sacrifices. A lesser person might retreat from the world and it would be understandable.

Justin & Shay

Instead, Shay faces every challenge with courage and grace and there seems to be no limit to everything she accomplishes while she is fighting this battle. Many of you know her so you know what I’m talking about. Some of you may not so I put together a list of things you should know about my wife.


  • My wife is a wildly successful businesswoman
  • My wife is an excellent mother and does most of the hard work raising our son (I’m in charge of math homework and sex ed.)
  • My wife manages our home practically by herself (I’m relegated to moving heavy objects and Aidan is, well, useless)
  • My wife does a great Mitch McConnell impersonation. Next time you see her, you should ask her to do it
  • My wife has a kind, generous heart (please stop sending her pictures of stray pets that need homes!)
  • My wife once drank a Dos Equis with The Most Interesting Man in the World – and found him to be a tedious bore


  • My wife is sexy and fun
  • My wife transformed me from an insufferable tool into the reasonably decent man that you all have begrudgingly learned to love
  • My wife is better than your wife. Just kidding. (No I’m not)
  • My wife is the bridge that connects me to the rest of the world

What I really want to say to my wife, Shay, is this: For fourteen years, our marriage has been a seamless masterpiece. That is no surprise. We love all the same stuff: Indie rock, drinking in fancy restaurants, House Hunters reruns, and each other. We’ve had a great time, but there’s a lot more to come. I have it all planned out. I won’t go into all the details here, but I’ll tell you how it ends: I die of a heart attack in 2059 while the two of us are engaged in a relatively exotic and certainly ill-advised episode of gross old people sex. In the meantime, though, there’s a lot of living to do together. First I need you to beat the shit out of this FUCKING cancer. Seriously. It’s enough with that nonsense already. I know it is becoming a little more difficult and a whole lot scarier lately, but I’ll be at your side the whole time. Let’s get it done for good this coming year. I love you. Happy anniversary.

15 thoughts on “Happy Anniversary

  1. Justin, I haven’t seen you in person since you were a little boy, I have not had the pleasure of meeting your awesome wife or your adorable lookalike son but with the love and support you show I am sure you beat the shit out of this!!! Best to you and your family. Happy Anniversary!

  2. Sharon Rieden? Who the hell is that? Anyway, you’ve made be proud and have learned life’s lessons well…….er..uh…somewhat let’s say. I wish I were closer, so I could pitch in with those needed chores around there and run “The Boy” around for you. The last visit was cut painfully short by emergency, but maybe I can motor on down soon. Where’d you learn sex ed mastery? Certainly not from your pappy, eh? Must have been your mom. She always had sex on her mind…………..avoidance of it! Hah. BTW old people sex is overrated. But seriously, keep up the great work and feel free to talk anytime. Dad

  3. I have said many times God bless Justin Hamer. I am so glad you are part of our family and that Shannon found you after a few jerks. Happy Anniversary! Just to let you know old people’s sex is just as good as young or middle age sex.
    Thank you for being part of our family.

  4. A lovely tribute to a wonderful woman. You are awesome, Justin,along with Shay’s incredible strength , I know the love of you and Aidan is the driving force that powers her strength. The three of you are this huge unstoppable unit. With you friends and family in tow nothing will stop this fight without a Hamer victory! So take THAT, Sarcoma, and get the hell out of here! Leave this family alone! Congrats on your 14th anniversary. This is just the first quarter in anniversary years! The next 3 quarters will even get better!

  5. I made the mistake of reading this before I left for work….needless to say, I was late. I had to find the Puffs… my eyes were leaking.. still are. You make me proud, Justin Hamer…very, very proud. The day you married Shay I was watching you as Shay started down the aisle… never before, and not since, that day have I ever seen such a look of pure love and happiness on the groom’s face as I saw on your face when you saw Shay. It left no doubt in my mind that this marriage was the real deal. Happy Anniversary to you both. I love you.

  6. Happy Anniversary Justin and Shay! I am so impressed at the beautiful gift you gave to Shay for your anniversary. Your words I’m sure meant more to her than any present. I will pray that that all your dreams come true for both of you. This is from your aunt Diane…..(well used to be anyway) my best to you and your family…:)

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