I am a writer. Since I first learned to form letters, I have been a writer. Whether it was writing notes or journaling in photo books, I have always felt the need to organize. Writing helps me organize all of the random thoughts that run rampant in my head. As I was thinking of my upcoming wedding anniversary, I felt the need to organize my relationship with Ashton. I needed to figure out how our relationship was different from others we ‘d had in our pasts. I needed to figure out how we got here from where we were, even before we met.
Ashton and I on our first date….12/2006
Before I met Ashton, I had learned to live with my bulimia. It was merely a handicap that I had learned to work around. I was somewhat comfortable with my life and I didn’t view myself as having a problem. As far as I was concerned, I only lived a different lifestyle than what many would consider normal. Unfortunately, for others with whom I had tried to develop relationships, my lifestyle was a big problem. Everyone wanted to fix me, and in the end, I felt even more like a failure. It wasn’t until I met Ashton that I found an unexpected love. I hadn’t been looking for a relationship, yet he seemed to manifest from nowhere. Broken and discouraged, I didn’t have high expectations; I had long ago tired of being anyone’s project. Even though I was difficult, he was patient. He was the first to ever see me for the person that I was on the inside. He never mentioned my disorder. He never pressured me to do anything other than what I wanted to do. He did encourage me to have fun. For the first time, I found that I was allowing myself to participate in my life. He made me feel normal. He made me feel well. At times, I was confused by the changes in my life and tried to push him away, but he was always there. Still. It was in his quiet love that I found myself wanting to consider getting better. After all, if he could love me unconditionally, faults and all, I could learn to love myself.
Our rehearsal dinner…6/20/2008
Our relationship hasn’t been easy. Recovery has been a very slow process. Over the past few years, there are times that he must have nearly given up on me. Our marriage isn’t perfect. By nature, we are very different. While I am a thinker,he is more impulsive. We fight. Sometimes, we curse and throw things, and become overly emotional. But, rather hold it in, we communicate. And although we don’t always communicate in an ideal way, communication is healthy. The dark stormy fights always give way to peaceful blue sunny skies. And, our bond is stronger because of it. Likewise, Ashton’s love has calmed the storms in my life. As the clouds clear I can see blue skies. The skies are brighter than any I’ve ever seen before. Because he loves me, I can love myself. Because he accepts my flaws, I have learned to accept them. Ashton’s love and our life together are the reasons I strive to become healthy. Because he has never asked me to become well, I have found the inspiration in him to heal. While writing has been my therapy, ultimately, it has been love that has healed me.
Happy Sixth Anniversary to my husband! May we always focus on the blue skies. Thank you for loving me.