James Van Der Beek knows just how lucky he is.
The Dancing with the Stars alum, 43, took to Instagram on Saturday to celebrate his ten-year anniversary with wife Kimberly, 38.
“Ten years ago today this woman made me the happiest I’d ever been. A year prior to that, I’d been famous, been wealthy, been married, been divorced, been less-than-wealthy, been single… and I was in Israel, on a trip with an organized group, when it hit me: I was done being single. I wanted a real relationship. A soul mate. Someone with whom I could build a family,” he wrote in his post. “I was mid-revelation, rattling all this off to a friend of mine when a voice interrupted us, wanting to ask him a question. I was annoyed. Who the hell was stepping all over my moment? I turned around… it was @vanderkimberly” tagging his wife’s account.
James shared that three days later, he asked Kimberly what she was looking for in love. While she answered, “I’m not looking for a relationship,” the couple found themselves living together six months later.
“Two weeks after that we were pregnant, and almost exactly one year to the date after she’d first interrupted me (on the spot where we’re standing in the last pic)… we were married,” the actor wrote.
The couple is now the parents of five children: Gwendolyn, 2, Emilia, 4, Annabel Leah, 6, Joshua, 8, and Olivia, 9½.
James continued opening up about the lessons he’s learned throughout their decade together.
“This marriage has demanded I be more present, more honest, more authentic, more open, more patient, more passionate, daring, capable, fun, and vulnerable than I’ve ever been. And I’m still earning her. We’ve been through joy and pain and everything in between, and even at the height of our most impassioned arguments… she’s who I want by my side,” he wrote.
The past year has been tough for the Van Der Beeks. Last month, the actor revealed on Instagram that his beloved mother, Melinda, passed away at age 70 after a long illness. While he was “grateful she’s no longer in pain,” he expressed his profound grief. “I’m sad, I’m angry, I’m relieved… all at once and in different moments,” he wrote, sharing that he was “still in shock.”
“After suffering a brutal, very public miscarriage last November, we were overjoyed to learn we were pregnant,” he wrote in a on Instagram. “This time, we kept the news to ourselves. But last weekend, once again, 17 weeks in… the soul we’d been excited to welcome into the world had lessons for our family that did not include joining us in a living physical body.”
James said Kimberly was rushed to the hospital to undergo blood transfusions, and expressed his profound gratitude for the medical professionals who “navigated the maze of regulations to save her life.”
And in November, the Dawson’s Creek alum wrote on Instagram that the family was “Wrecked. Devastated. In shock” due to another miscarriage. In 2018, he posted that pregnancy loss “will tear you open like nothing else. It’s painful and it’s heartbreaking on levels deeper than you may have ever experienced. So don’t judge your grief, or try to rationalize your way around it. Let it flow in the waves in which it comes, and allow it it’s rightful space.”
Despite their challenges, James closed out his anniversary post with hope for the family’s future.
“Kimberly, you astound me,” he wrote. “Your bravery, your tenderness, and your unwillingness to settle for anything less than what can and ought to be…. You’re the best human I know. I love you, and I look forward to earning your partnership for years to come. (And also that huge party/vow renewal in the woods I’ve been promising you for ten years – once we’re out of pandemic protocol) Happy anniversary babe.”
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