Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Love Letter Campaign ~ Made For Each Other


My dear husband,

We had no idea, but our lives were planned out before we were even born. We were made for each other. When you were born, your dad made a joke that maybe one day we'd get married. And here we are. We had such a great and fun friendship growing up. But then my dad retired before yours, and decided to move somewhere warmer. Those 8 years we didn't really see each other, almost doesn't feel like it ever really happened. When we reunited in our early 20's, it just seemed that we picked up right where we left off. The connection was too great to ignore. We really were destined to be together.

Life was not easy for us when we started out. There were many who thought it was too much, too soon. I knew in my heart you were the man I was meant to spend the rest of my life with. 2 months into our relationship, though we had only spent a matter of a few weeks together, because you were still in AIT, and using up leave every chance you got to come see me and Logan, you proposed to me. You bought not one, but TWO engagement rings, because you were worried the one you picked out would not ship in time. The ring you chose for me, was, and is so beautiful. I see that you were trying to find something unique, so that I wouldn't see the same ring on someone else's finger. And to this day, I have not. There's no way I could have said no to you. I almost felt my heart just stop when you slipped it onto my finger, and asked me to marry you. Every time our weekend had come to an end, I just felt such strong sadness in saying goodbye, it almost physically hurt.

I've felt that hurt many times since then. But I've also felt such incredible, indescribable joy in all the times we've been able to say hello, again. When we were married, seeing your face light up is a sight I will never EVER forget. We had so little when we got married. A laundry basket for an entertainment center/table, an air mattress for a bed for months... Those were the days. We were still so very happy. Then, we found out we were expecting our first child, together. Logan was so excited to be a big brother. The look on your face when you found the surprise I had left you in the mail box, telling you that we were pregnant. You picked me up and hugged me so tight. It felt like you held me forever.

Then, only one week later I woke up feeling that something was wrong. You were gone to PT. After I got out of bed, I quickly realized what was happening. I was losing the baby that we tried so hard for, and wanted so badly. That was one of the worst days of my entire life. I felt like I failed you. I feel like I let everyone down. I blamed myself, that maybe I did something wrong, though I was eating well, and taking care of myself. It just didn't make sense. When we got home from the hospital, we just lay in bed, and held each other and cried. I'll never forget that baby, and I know you won't either. Though he/she was not growing inside me for long, that baby was loved so much. I know we will meet him/her one day. I am so thankful that I didn't go through that alone. You were there for me 100%. Yes, it was one of the worst days in my life, but I had you, and there's nothing in this world that could have made healing mentally/physically/emotionally any easier.

A few months later, SURPRISE! We were pregnant again. This pregnancy, other than Gestational Diabetes, was a healthy pregnancy. You were... You were incredible. You painted my toes, you ran out at all hours of the night to get me whatever I was craving, you talked to my belly and loved on our precious baby non-stop. I wish you were able to experience my entire pregnancy, but... Military life had really kicked in. You geared up, and shipped out on your first deployment. Nothing could have prepared me for how difficult it was going to be. To be without you, to settled into a town/state that was completely new to me, to have a baby on my own. Thankfully, you were granted emergency leave, and made it in

time to see our son into the world, this perfect, beautiful, little chunky butt. I saw that same joy on your face as the day we got married. Life was good.

And just as fast as you were there, you were gone again, and I was left to hold down the fort. Living in the apartment felt really unsafe, so you urged me to start the process of buying a home. I found a home that was perfect for us, and welcomed you home there when your deployment was over. There was that handsome face of yours again. That joy on your face that I live for. You lit up seeing me and our boys. Life was amazing.

Hey... Remember when we got that silly idea to try for another baby when our youngest son was 6 months old? Yeah, me too :) Such happy news, and then there's that gut wrenching hurt again, when you got orders right after we found out we were expecting again. Timing has never been our thing, has it? Our perfect, beautiful little girly girl was born a month after you said goodbye, again. Thankfully, you made it just in time, once more. Fast forward another 11 months, and you were FINALLY home from that deployment.

You had figured it out that you had been actually HOME for about 1/4 of our relationship. Between schools, deployments, training, etc. So, this was it. This was our happily ever after. Except it wasn't. You had experienced things that had changed you. One thing in particular, which will be with you for the rest of your life. Life since you've been home has been more than hard. My hysterectomy from pregnancy/birth complications, adding special needs into our life with one of our children, and now PTSD. Our lives are forever changed by PTSD...

There's one thing that hasn't changed, my love for you. My love for you will only grow stronger with each day. Sometimes I'll fall to my knees, and ask why this has all happened to us. But I'll quickly get back up, and keep soldiering on, just as you have done in your military career. You are my oldest, dearest friend. You are the love of my life. You are the father of my children. You are, to me, the most incredible man that has ever lived. My love for you will not lessen with all of these trials and tribulations. For better, or for worse, in sickness, and in health, you are the man I gave my heart to, and I will never give up on you, or our family.

Thank you for choosing me to give your heart to. Out of all the women on this earth, you chose me. To say I am honored to be your wife is an understatement. I love you, babe, with everything I have.

Submitted By: The wife of a hero

This blog post is part of The Love Letter Campaign... a project started by FamilyOfaVet.com to encourage those who love a hero to write a letter sharing their story (where they started, what they've faced together, and why their love endures). It's not just for spouses, but also for parents, siblings, caregivers, and friends. It's about telling the "rest" of our stories... stories that continue despite PTSD, TBI, and the challenges of life after combat. To share your love letter or find out more about the campaign, visit http://www.familyofavet.com/love_letters.html.

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