Engagement Anniversary

My dear husband,

Today we celebrate 5 years of being engaged. If I questioned before, I knew I’d marry you for sure when you willingly put yourself on the road to take this picture for me:

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Your proposal was so incredibly thought out and elaborate that I trip over my words just trying to explain it to people- but my favorite was when you got on your knee and offered me the ring I still wear each day. It looks a little something like this, except it is real:

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This has, by far, been our best year of marriage. Thank you for standing by me through my pregnant hormonal outbursts, my dramatic labor, and my struggle with my faith and moving forward from my past. I am so happy to call you my husband. Here are some of my favorite moments with you over the last year:

Hearing the squeal our daughter gives every time she sees you

Watching you seeing our daughter on ultrasound (all three times!)

Watching you grow our race timing business right in our spare bedroom

Rough-housing with you and our son

The first time you waved at that carved bear at the end of that person’s driveway

Watching you learn HTML code!

Watching you map the course to train our son for his first running team next spring!

Watching you father our son; thank you for being his best friend

I love the way you come and lie down with me when I need you most

I love the way you set up our computers yesterday so we could connect more effectively 😉

computersMy goals for the upcoming year:

Learn to enjoy sports

Do the dishes every day (I just don’t know if this is ever going to happen but I’m not going to give up!)

Be patient with your humor

Cook more

Laugh with you more

Engage in your theological tangents

Okay Okay, I’ll stop writing about doing the dishes and just go do them. I love you! Love,

Your wife (ps- thank you for the m&m’s for our date tonight!!)

The damage is done

my mind

It took a lot of courage to start a blog about my struggle (and as a result, my family’s struggle) with PTSD, and I’m not sure what I was thinking when I promptly told my real world that the blog existed… and as a bi-product, I told my world about my diagnosis. Not long after I posted the link, I began to deeply regret sharing; it’s that feeling of shame eating away at me. I’ve quickly become a part of this beautiful community of bloggers with a PTSD diagnosis; they all write under pseudonyms and if their family knows the blog exists, they have never read it. After nearly three weeks of my blogging, I can see why. I set out to make mental illness easier to talk about, but my posts on this blog have been careful; I cannot share so much of myself or I will just make myself more vulnerable than I already am.

But, the damage has been done so I may as well share. I am sharing because it has wreaked havoc on my family. I keep telling myself that we will come out stronger on the other side… but what if there is no other side? My therapist keeps telling me I need to learn to live with it, and learn to accept that I will always have these, at times, debilitating symptoms. Once I accept, then I can move forward with learning to manage.

It is embarrassing to admit to people I see every day that when my son runs and jumps on me from behind, instead of playing with him, I curl into a ball, cover my ears, close my eyes and cry. Or when my husband uses a certain tone, I hide- again, in a ball with my ears covered and eyes closed. I close my eyes so I don’t see the flashbacks, but they’re in my mind so I see it more readily. I cover my ears so I don’t hear my flashbacks, but they’re in my mind so I hear them more readily. I curl up so I don’t feel my flashbacks, but it makes no difference. My husband is afraid to listen to music in the car because he never knows when he’ll look over to see me dissociated because of a certain song. I never know when I will be triggered, and I may end up in my car in the parking lot at Target in tears because something as simple as the way someone was walking triggered me.

I am so busy surviving that it is a struggle to socialize or clean the house. It takes everything I have to meet my children’s needs.