[Read Heather’s post before reading mine. It’s a little long, but I promise it will make more sense that way.]
When I read this post a few years ago, I was taken by Heather’s raw and earnest description of what real long-term partnership looks like. So many of us mistakenly believe that it involves receiving 10 karat tennis bracelets for our anniversary, or taking expensive vacations. These material items are nice, but they tell you nothing about how much you are loved.
When someone loves you, they jump in the fox hole with you. They’re there to cling to when you are most vulnerable. They clean up your mess.
Yesterday, as my intestines fought me tooth and nail in my attempts to release some digested food, my husband stood in front of me, rubbing my back, and allowed me to scream and sob until the pain was done. He did this not once, but twice. He told assured me everything was going to be okay. He told me I knew how to deal with the pain. He reminded me to breathe and he held my head.
I’m here to tell you that if giving birth was a 10 on the pain scale, what I experienced yesterday was a 12. Yes, it was that bad. But as he has so many times in the past, my husband jumped in to save me without my asking for help. If I had gone in the tub, as Heather did, I know without a doubt that he would have done anything necessary to get me through it. And, yes, he would pick up my poop.
Because love isn’t always pretty. But when it’s raw, real, and naked, it’s also its most beautiful. That I have been shown 1000 times in these past weeks the depth of that love, doesn’t quite all of the pain and sadness I’ve felt “worth it.” But it has filled my soul the way that only this love can.