To the man who has loved me through everything,
Things happened so easily, so naturally. The first couple weeks of dating were light and easy. I wanted to keep it that way, even though I knew it couldn’t last forever. It didn’t take long until you asked what my pills were for. The question was innocent enough. You assumed they were for my knee or my blood sugar, something you already knew about.
I hesitated. I thought if I told you the truth, I would lose you. I should have given you more credit. I told you we would talk about it later. I beat around the bush. Then, with the sweetest tone in your voice, you said, “You know you that you can talk to me about it, right?” So I did.
I opened up to you in a way I had never opened up to anyone before. With all the trust I had in my heart, I told you about my “terrible trio,” anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). You didn’t hang up. You didn’t run away. You didn’t cancel our plans to see each other that weekend. Instead, you lovingly listened to every word I said.
Best of all, you validated my struggles. You didn’t make me feel like I was crazy. You made me feel strong for facing everything. You made me feel exactly how I needed to that night.
Letting you in like that was terrifying for me. I thought it would send you away, but instead you snuggled in closer. As the months passed, you encouraged me to vocalize my thoughts. You held me in silence when I couldn’t find words.
Then, despite all that, you asked me to marry you. Our wedding was beautiful, everything I had ever dreamed of. You, you were the man I had never even dared to dream of for fear that he could not possibly exist. Unfortunately for both of us, even the euphoria of being in the honeymoon phase didn’t send the terrible trio away from me, but you were by my side every step of the way.
You loved me when things got worse. You loved me even on the nights you came home and found me curled up in a ball. You loved me when I cancelled plans at the last minute because I couldn’t handle going out that night. You loved me when I let laundry and dishes pile up because just getting out of bed seemed like a chore. You even loved me on the days when I couldn’t bring myself to get out of bed.
You loved me when I was on top of things, even though we both knew it wouldn’t last long. You loved me when I broke down crying in the mall because I felt that nothing could make me feel pretty. You loved me when I aced all my exams. You loved me when my grades slipped because I wasn’t functioning.
You loved me when work was all I could talk about. You loved me when work left me drained and lifeless at the end of a tough day. You loved me when I needed to lean on you. You loved me when I felt the need to be independent.