“After every storm the sun will smile; for every problem there is a solution, and the soul’s indefeasible duty is to be of good cheer.” William R. Alger
I suppose it all started with a heart storm: the urgent winds of change, the charge of electricity in the air, the pounding rain of uncertainty…emotions swirling around my feet, sometimes leading me forward to my destination, sometimes becoming so strong I could no longer see my destination. They choked me, scared me, overwhelmed me with their intensity. The storm died down eventually. The emotions were still there, only on a more even keel. I could see around them and through them. I could keep the swells of negativity and doubt at bay. I could steer, I could think. I could be.
It’s been two years since the heart storm picked me up, turned me upside down, shook me out of my old life and set me down in the middle of something newer and better. Something I had only hoped for. Something I thought was left to television episodes and romantic comedies. Something only other people could experience. It’s been two years since I was tossed out of my comfort zone; two years since I was shaken out of my protective shell.
Then something else happened — a tornado from left field. Unexpected. Uncalled. Something not prepared for. But I wasn’t alone. The heart storm had brought someone to me. Bound me to someone, pushed me…pulled me…. Something else was working behind the scenes. Driving, guiding, pushing, waiting. It took a heavy storm to bring me to my guy.
It’s almost exactly a year and a half since the tornado struck. Gale force winds threatened to knock down what I had shakingly built up, but my guy was there. In the shock and surprise and fear of the tornado my guy helped me plant my feet firmly, helped me believe in myself and happy endings, helped me breathe when I couldn’t do it on my own because I was too stressed, upset or overwhelmed. It was my guy who helped me keep my head together. Helped me stay sane when I felt like everything was pushing me over the edge to insanity. He was my voice of reason, my reminder of all I hoped, dreamt, and knew. He was my rock, my best friend and my hero.
From the first drops of rain until now, he and I have weathered many storms of different varieties. We’ve seen more than our share of weather, of life, of love. We’ve overcome many obstacles, both real and imagined. We’ve learned what we can expect from the world around us and what we can depend on from each other. For the past two years I’ve been lucky enough to lie next to my best friend every night and to wake up with him in the morning. I’ve been blessed to have my best friend with me to share my tears, obliterate my fears, laugh hysterically in the face of the inane and someone to walk through the fire with me.
Our road seems long. Our journey has been bumpy, has thrown one or the other of us at different times, but has brought us closer together. Made us stronger.
I am a better person because of the love of one man and I love him so much more than words can say. “I love you” doesn’t seem to come close to expressing everything I feel, but it’s all the English language has to offer.
I love you, Matthew. Thank you for always being here for me. For always trying to understand, for pretending you understand when you don’t, and for never making me feel like I’m weak or wrong or hormonal. Thank you for making me feel like, finally, I belong.
I love you greatly. I pray for many more years at your side and on your side guiding our little tornado forward on her journey through life. You and Abigail are both the best unexpected storms I’ve ever had.