Monday, February 14, 2011

In Honor of Valentine's Day

I wanted to take a few minutes and write about my amazing husband. I have only written about him a few times. (Here & Here.)

I have been in love with this man for over 13 years. In 1997 I was 14 and a freshman when we really met for the first time. We had been introduced once before in passing. He was an upper classmen but ended up being in one of my classes. I remember watching him walk in the room and being surprisingly happy that he was there. He sat next to me in the back of the class. I spent the rest of the year trying not to fail that class from distraction.

A couple weeks after school started that year & on my fourteenth birthday a friend of mine asked if I would tag along on a trip to the mall with some friends. My husband was along for the ride as well. We ended up going off on our own that day and there were sparks from the start. We had a rather complicated first year until we became an official couple almost exactly a year later. I always dreamed that I would marry my high school sweetheart.

November 1998 (I think)
There are times I long for the carefree days we spent together as teenagers. The days before responsibility with only the wonder of how we should spend our day together. The days before bills, real jobs, adulthood....grief.

In 2002 we moved in together and in 2003 our son JJ was born.

In December 2007 after 9 years together we were engaged. Finally

We were married 10 months later on October 18th, 2008.

We found out a couple weeks later on our honeymoon we were pregnant with Janessa. She was our little wedding night baby.

The rest you know. We had one heck of a first year of marriage.

May 9th, 2009
5 days later....

May 14th, 2009

Oh how quickly life can change.
I read about a study done in 1985 which found that up to 80-90% of couples who lose a child get divorced. I found that piece of information very shortly after Janessa died. It terrified me. Although, I do find that to be an extreme figure and am almost positive it is not that high. The thought of another possible loss in my life was something I knew I could not handle. I was worried about the coming weeks and months that layed ahead of us. I had no idea where the depths of grief would take us. I worried it would take us apart. At that time I was too broken and emotionally weak to do anything precautionary to make sure it did not.

We both grieved differently. What I believe held us together was our acceptance of each other's grief. We did not hold any expectations of what our grief should be like or how we should each act. We communicated and supported each other. I am immensely grateful for the relationship we have. He really is my best friend.

To say I grieved hard would be an understatement. To this day, almost 2 years later I am still grieving. Intensely at times. I have now accepted from endless readings that I will grieve for the rest of my life. It will eventually be subtlety intertwined in our lives..but subtlety is far in my future.

I am relieved to say that Janessa's death brought us closer together. It showed us how strong our relationship was. I found his presence to be incredibly comforting. I remember not wanting him to leave my side for about a month. I would beg him not to leave when he had somewhere to go. He ended up taking quite a few weeks off of work and I was grateful for that. We spent most of those days together. We ventured out to distract us. We talked a lot. Planning & talking about the future seemed to help. It gave us a lifeline of hope to cling to. I took solace that he was the only one in this world that knew my pain firsthand. He was the only one who loved her & missed her in the way only her parent could. I found my only peace in his arms and the hugs from our son JJ.

I had always imagined that the loss of a child must be the most stressful and emotionally painful event a human could experience. I now personally know this be true. It was always my biggest fear in life. I had thought about it many many times. It would make me physically ill. There are still times I cannot believe we were handed this card. I never thought I could survive the death of my child. I also never thought I would have to. The fact is your forced into survival mode. To a large degree a lot of me did not survive it. There are gaps in my soul & spirit. Those personality traits died the day Janessa did. I hope that one day the holes will be repaired. I am sad JD will never know who I once was. I liked that person better.

What I am grateful for is that I have had my husband by my side. I am positive I would not have made it without him.

I love him.

I love him for loving me through all my flaws. I have plenty. I love him for accepting me for who I am. I love that I can be my complete self around him and never fear judgement. No one knows me like him.

I love him for the way he treats me, the way he loves me. The way he listens to me babble on and on. (Or is he listening?) I love him for the father he is, the person he is.

I am not sure how I became so lucky. I sometimes do not think I deserve him.

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