First of all, I need to apologize for my blogging hiatus. The good news is my digital marketing consulting business took off and I have been very busy since I last wrote. The sad news is I had to let something go and unfortunately this blog, which was supposed to be my outlet, was the thing. Let’s try this again.
I was inspired to come back and write after I came across this photo while cleaning Chuck’s desk.
It was taken after he proposed on 1.1.11. What is special about this photo is that I didn’t even realize it was taken. We were both in a fog but someone grabbed my camera and grabbed a few shots of the moment. I think we are both in a state of shock at that point. When I stumbled across the retired camera under heaps of papers, I popped out the memory card and saw our young faces looking back at us. And – I am not making this up – our wedding song came on iTunes at that moment.
Even though this picture was taken just 5 years ago and we have been together a total of 13, I feel like SO MUCH has happened since this photo. We both look so young and carefree and I think “Oh babies, if you only knew what was coming.”
- Two months after this photo was taken my maternal Grandmother lost her battle to Alzheimer’s. Which really was a blessing because she had been diagnosed with the disease 10 years before that and it was hard on the family to watch her slip away from us.
- A few months after that photo we found out Chuck’s Aunt was diagnosed with cancer and she passed away 3 months before our wedding.
- 15 months later Chuck was promoted to management at his job after working there since he was 14.
- 18 months (exactly) after this photo we were married.
- 20 months after this photo my Mother became extremely sick and almost died. A bug bite that became infected with medical complications where she ended up in the hospital. We found that she had a vascular disease, that took its toll and left her with brain damage. Even though some days it feels like Alzheimer’s the doctor’s remind us it isn’t. However, her memory has been impaired and her personality has changed.
- 20 months I started graduate school.
- 21 months I dropped out of graduate school to take care of my parents.
- Two years-to-the-date I started my first day of unemployment after accepting a severance package at my old job. I was so stressed with this job that I was under chronic stress and my hair was falling out. I just found out that in order for this to happen your body is under stress for an extended period of time.
- 30 months to the date our beautiful, sweet, kind and loving Niece was born who brings us so much joy.
- 31 months to the date I launched my business JO Social Branding with the un-wavering support of my husband.
- Month 33 – Today (month 63) becomes a blur. Launching a business takes time, perseverance, in some cases disillusion and from a working spouse, trust, patience and an over-abundance of love and support.
See what I mean? So much has changed and I know it is called life. The one constant is our love and if anything it has grown stronger. Somewhere between month 21 and 31, I felt guilty for Chuck. This was not the woman he married. I know I have changed. Any human would. Especially with the health situation with my Mother that my families battles with daily. But he stood by me and loved me more.
The point I am getting at is this: I am thankful for the dark moments because they have made the light ones so much more special. There is a quote, and of course I cannot find it in this moment, but it is about choosing love and staying together despite everything that is ripping you apart. Not that our marriage was in danger with any of these instances.
But when times were tough we choose to lean in and support one another rather than lean apart and try and fight it alone.
And to my husband, even though you made me wait 98 months BE (Before Engagement), I get it now. You wanted that solid foundation in place for those rough times. Thank you my love.