bliss-sad's Diaryland Diary


6 years.

For a lot of people, it seems as though once you're married, you stop celebrating all those little days that used to be significant in your relationship. Maybe you're supposed to. Maybe the idea is that marriage is bigger and better than all of those little things that people hold onto... It's hard for me to understand, because I don't adhere to that philosophy.

Now, I know I've been particularly depressing lately, but today is cause for celebration because it was on this day six years ago that my husband and I committed ourselves to one another. Even though we had never met in person, even though we were over several hundred miles apart, we were crazy enough to think we could make it work.

I wish that I could tell you the story, but some of the details are foggy (thanks, marijuana...). I remember we'd been talking for several months (on the phone, MSN messenger, name it) and Devon was being incredibly evasive whenever I brought up the subject of visiting him. Being that I was head-over-heels in love with this Adonis enigma, I took his hesitation to meet as a sign that our constant communication was little more than a way for him to amuse himself. It all came to a head for me, and one night I just vomited insecurity into my MSN text box. Being that my now-husband is one of the coolest, smoothest cats on the planet, he managed to completely walk around the topic of ever meeting and instead sweet-talked me into agreeing to be his girlfriend.

We didn't meet for another four months after making the commitment to each other, and it was only then that I discovered that Devon was afraid to meet me because he was in the midst of a weight loss journey that resulted in shedding something like one-hundred pounds and 10 inches off his waist.

It makes both of us laugh now, but at the time, I remember being completely distraught over the whole situation. When you're in a relationship with someone you've met online and haven't met in person, you are pretty much flying on blind optimism. The person at the other end of the computer has every opportunity to lie to you--to build themselves into a bigger, better, stronger and more fantastic version of themselves. It's actually quite easy to fall in love with someone when they're removed from your day-to-day life because instead of loving them, often you love all of the things that they could be.

I think that I'm the luckiest woman in the world to have gotten exactly what was advertised.

I've written before about how our relationship has hit a rough patch over the course of the past six months. We've each been so entrenched in our own depression and grief that we no longer know how to balance feeling our pain with being a supportive partner. There was so little time between losing my best friend to finding my grandmother's body to watching his mother slip away that we never had a chance to catch our footing. There was no chance to pause and say, "Okay...this is how you handle it," and when things finally slowed down enough for us to breathe, we each retreated to separate corners to lick our wounds.

And it seems as though that's where we've stayed since October. Our once beautiful partnership has dissolved into 2 people enabling each other's depression.

I'm ashamed to say that it all caused some short-lived but very serious doubts about whether or not we were going to make it at all. I felt so unsupported and so isolated from my husband that I lost sight of the fact that it was the grief and trauma and inability to deal that caused this rift to form between us. What I interpreted as lack of love/affection/caring/compassion was just 2 incredibly wounded people trying to find center--find balance.

I'm still struggling with it. I still have these moments where ego takes hold and I find myself bitter towards my husband for being too entrenched in his sadness to touch mine. I still have trouble figuring out if I'm being selfish for trying to get my shit together so that I can be of some help to my husband. Fortunately, we're finally able to talk about this without judgment. I'm able to say things like, "Sometimes I get so mad at you for not recognizing how depressed I am, and then I realize how incredibly selfish it is to expect you to set your grief aside when I'm unable to do it." He's finally able to say things like, "I've just been trying not to feel it. I thought if I didn't deal with it, it would go away."

We're both finally in a place where we can admit to one another that we're lost--that every time we close our eyes, we're haunted by images of dead and dying loved ones. We can finally talk about how we're lost and depressed and alone and isolated and scared.

That gives me hope.

I see the distance between us getting smaller and smaller, though it still feels vast. I feel things warming up, though it's still awfully cold.

And I can't help but think that this is what marriage really is. It's about the ebb and flow. It's about realizing that sometimes you have to be in completely different areas of the ship to successfully navigate your way home.

After we returned from our trip to say goodbye to Devon's mother, my own mother took me aside to have a chat. She told me that in our time together, Devon and I faced more obstacles than she and my father had during their first 25 years of marriage. She told me that we were strong. She said that our love could get through anything as long as I never lost faith in it.

I figured she was just saying things, until I started sharing my story and realized that not a lot of people just stumble upon bodies or watch the light diminish in the eyes of a loved one--especially not at 25 and 28 years old. It was then that I realized how ridiculously hard I'm being on both of us.

Devon and I are opposite ends of the same spectrum. Instead of allowing himself to grieve and letting his feelings come to him as they will, he pushes it all aside and pretends it doesn't exist. I, on the other hand, have done nothing but force the process of healing. I thought if I could think about things just right--come to some sort of happy conclusion that I could shove in a box and wrap a bow around, that I'd be fine again. We're forcing it and it's fucking everything up.

I still don't know what I'm doing or how to continue, but I do know that I need to cut us both some slack. I know that we have a lot of healing to do, and that while we are kind of broken as individuals, our relationship is as strong as we work to make it.

As long as we're working in the right direction, that is.

Six years, and despite my occasional bouts of insanity, I still love my husband more every day. We will emerge on the other side of all of this some day, and when we do, we'll be a thousand times stronger.

10:07 a.m. - 01.20.15


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