I was struggling this month. Struggling with how to come here and speak love to you, how to commemorate this time. Five and a half years from our first date, years filled with the greatest of joys, the deepest of darkness, tears and laughter in overwhelming amounts.
Our second date was a surprise. A surprise meeting with your family -the genetic and those of your heart. I spent the night shell-shocked and yet undeniably attracted to you. My thoughts ran wild, like a toddler with Twizzlers, pondering what this all meant -the family, the friends, me, you. Though it seems obvious now, you surprised me then with your love for family.
I hadn't a clue about the depth of your heart.
Five years ago, I sent you the text: The Dr. said it's Alzheimer's. I'm headed home. Talk later. I don't remember your reply, only tears, tissues, an afternoon of pretending the water on our face was from the pool and not our sorrows. I spent the day at home with my family soaking in the diagnosis, then I left. I needed you, to see you, to speak to you, to breath you in. You said for me to stay, to support, to soak some more. You surprised me then: your unwavering support of us -my family and me.
Five years ago, I sat on the edge of your bed, tearful, fearful, vulnerable in ways I'd never imagined being with you -or anyone, for that matter. I said no. I demanded two promises from you: 1. To marry me and 2. To help me care for my family. There was no shake in your voice, no question in your eyes, no worry in your heart as you said yes. You rubbed my back as it shuddered under the weight of sobs. You surprised me then: you repeated, yes Amber, yes I will.
Last week I told you I was scared. His dementia paired with your family's Alzheimer's and talks of genetic links and being predisposed and shit; it scares me half to death. We were laying in the dark, fingers twisted in a knot, me nervously shaking my feet when you surprised me again. You said what I know in the depths of my soul, but you said it nonetheless. You said, Knowing all that mess, I'd still marry you, love you, create a family with you, and endure losing you. I echo those sentiments sir.
Your love surprises me daily Jason.
Not simply because you love me, but in the way you love the web that surrounds me: the Mama Bird, the Popsicle, the brothers, the sisters, the nephews, the animals, the lifelong friends. Someone told me that you look at me in love and my heart longs that I can't see it for myself, then I realized I get a glimpse of that look as you interact with my family. As you hold hands on walks with Popsicle, shoot hoops with Miah, bromance with Bub, chase chickens with Mama Bird, your soul seems to whisper I love you. And still, it surprises me.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -These letters are the brainchild of Amber C. Haines and her husband, Seth. While they take a break from writing for the summer, I'm choosing to continue on my own. I write to remember mundane moments that would otherwise slip away, to hold tight to him, and to remember how life looks right now at this very moment, plus the chance for these letters to shed light on our marriage before children for our children because they won't know us as newlyweds otherwise.