My Love Letter
"Love is my religion - I could die for it."
Tomorrow will mark one year. One whirlwind of a year. One year since we started our new journey.
One year since we both worked in news (I guess that's what we get for complaining about not enough time off, aye?).
I feel like we've learned so much, come such a long way -- and yet -- have so much more to understand. In the grand scheme of things, we're still new at this.
We have a new morning routine.
I wake up before ten.
I get my coffee.
Usually watch Will and Grace, but lately the Olympics.
I wait until ten on the nose.
I walk quietly into your room, try not to startle you so I don't prompt any spasms.
Find out how you slept, so we know what we're dealing with. Grumpy Jimmy or Happy Jimmy.
I check the weather, pick out your clothes, turn your TV on, go in the kitchen and toast your English muffin and spread the chive cream cheese.
Grab your gummy vitamins.
Maybe suction you before you eat.
Then call the nurses in to get started around 10:20.
I know morning time is your least favorite part of the day. Your a.m. spasms are wacky and wild. Your neck is stiff and sometimes hurts. Most of the time you don't sleep well and wake up feeling not rested, which is the worst.
We have created a lot of new routines. There's comfort in our routines, don't you think?
I'm so proud of you.
You handle so much, so well.
I'd have to think if it was me, I'd be crying all the time. Well I cry all the time anyways, because I'm an emotional train wreck.
But you find a way to comfort me, even as you deal with all your daily challenges.
We've just recently found a new way for you to hug me. I put my head in your neck-nook. You tilt your head down and give me a head-hug. Neck-nook, head-hug.
Hugs aren't just for arms anymore, baby.
You make things better for me. Your stupid sense of humor saves me. Your personality hasn't changed and thank God for that. How would I have gotten through a year of this without you?
I am always acutely aware of the fact that you almost died one year ago. And while I yearn for our past and cry over memories of holding hands while walking, swimming in the ocean together, and you helping me carry groceries in -- I'd take this any day over death.
My therapist has told me stories of other couples who don't adjust so well. Of spouses who wish their loved one would have just died. It's final. You grieve and move on with your life, eventually.
I never wanted that. I never wished for death. And I can't judge either. I can understand someone not being able to deal. Not being able to handle it.
But when my day turns to shit and I have a meltdown -- your presence is my healing force.
So thank you.
Maybe I've helped you over the past year, but you have helped me even more. You have helped me build all kinds of mental muscle. I feel like I can lift a proverbial car off the ground sometimes.
I'm grateful for you.
Everything we have been through in the past year and how we've come out of it has validated the very reasons why I said yes when you proposed two Junes ago.
We continue to push and challenge each other the way a married couple should. We continue to bicker and argue the way a married couple does.
You still don't like it when I leave, but you know it's for the best. For me to do somethings for me. Tennis, grocery shopping, Starbucks. But it's always exciting to bring my outside world experiences back home to you.
And the same goes for you. The rare instances when you go on an outing without me. It feels normal. We used to run errands alone. We liked our alone time. I adore hearing the excitement in your voice when you return.
I get so envious of people in chairs with arm movement. I want that for you so bad. To be able to pick up the phone and make a phone call. To be able to feed yourself. To be able to change the channel without it being a frickin act of congress.
If you never regain any movement/feeling -- I'm prepared. We're prepared. We know how to manage. People manage with a lot less, I suppose.
After a year, I have to think it may stay this way, although miracles do happen.
We'll live on love. Deal with the constant challenges. Adore our down time in the living room while it rains in the afternoons. We'll continue to find things we like doing together. We'll console each other through the dark times.
You'll yell at me for stopping by TJ Maxx -- again. I'll fuss at you for eating too many Reese's cups.
It's kinda fun -- this thing.
Tomorrow we'll celebrate with a Life Party. Beef, beer, friends, maybe some family. A small gathering that's sure to include some laughter.
Looking forward to many more years with you, Dear Husband.