It has been 509 days since I have posted. So much has happened, so much has changed but the one thing that remains the same is my love for my husband. 479 days seems like such a long time but in reality it’s only 1 year and 4 months but for Cyrus it has been 8677 days since the day his life was stolen from him. 23 years, 285 months, 1239 weeks….all of his entire adult life GONE!!!! Can you imagine all of your 20’s and 30’s just disappearing? All of the life experiences, lessons, moments, and memories…not there!!! How different would your life be? How different would you be as a person? I wrestle daily with how to reconcile my feelings about Cyrus’s life. On one hand I am so angry I could spit fire and the other I am so unbelievably sad. This beautiful person, beautiful soul has been locked away, caged like an animal for so long…little things that never use to affect me now make me stop and take a second glance. I have found myself appreciating simple things like how green the grass is or how beautiful the sky looks or just admiring the moon on a clear night. These are all things Cyrus can not even imagine….it literally breaks my heart! He was a child by all rights when he was arrested. He did not even have facial hair yet! There is a video of him in night court when he was being booked and he was by all means a child and looked like a child. The reality of that statement sucks all of the oxygen out of my lungs. I think about all of the things he missed out on….prom, graduation, college, his 21st birthday….hell his entire 20’s and 30’s and slowly but surely he is missing his 40’s and HE IS INNOCENT!!! He does NOT EVEN BELONG THERE but because his life was deemed worthless…he has been forced to live in a cell for over 23 years!!!!!! 23 damn years!!!! There is no justice in America when rich white kids kill 4 people and get probation, or are arrested with 100 pounds of marijuana and get probation, or rape an unconscious woman and serve 3 months in jail….where is the justice in that? WHERE??!!??
Repairing your marriage when your partner is incarcerated is an extremely daunting task. It is most definitely not for the faint of heart. We have been struggling for well over 6 months trying to figure out what our next step is and how do we get to that next step. It has been a hard road but I think we are finally getting to the place where we can move forward. I love my husband. We have a phenomenal love. We are a phenomenally amazing couple. It has taken us being separated from each other physically in order for us (especially me) to truly embrace what an amazing blessing my husband is to me and to the world. I am a lucky woman and I do not say that lightly. Loving the “good” me is not hard…I am sure over the years there have been a few men who have loved the “good” me…that does not take much effort. But loving the real me…that is a totally different story. The real me is selfish and bratty and prideful and defensive. I am harsh with my words because I build walls to keep people out. My husband knows these things and loves me not in spite of them but because of them. He knows how fragile my ego is and he knows my insecurities and instead of feeding those insecurities and taking advantage of them, he offers me a place to be myself and all he asks in return is that I love him just as fiercely as he has loved me most of our lives. I can own up to my part in the demise of our marriage. I did not set him apart from everyone else although he has never treated me like everyone else I treated him just like he was a regular guy not the sweet wonderful man I married. The man that loves me no matter how hard I push him away. He has treasured my heart and my soul for years and I was so prideful and set in my ways that I could not see the wonderful treasure that he truly is. I could not let go and love him with all of my heart and soul and truly be the woman God intended me to be for my husband. We are working towards reconciliation. It is not an easy or overnight process but at the end of the day we both want to be married to one another and we both want a truly amazing marriage that defies all the odds that have been stacked against us since day one. I love my husband more than anything in this world and I will intentionally love him for the rest of my life. I will think before I speak. I will listen to understand not just to reply. I will let my defenses down and know that he is not critical of me that every thing he says and does comes from a place of love and not judgement, I will do the same for him because our marriage is the most important relationship we have in this world.
“Time heals all wounds” how many times have we heard this and how many times have we thought not this time? I am in that place right now. Most people discount my marriage…it’s not real to them. We’ve never lived in the same house, went to sleep or woke up in the same bed, shared a meal together, watched a movie, cuddled on the couch, the list goes on and on but none of those things matter when you are dealing with your heart. I love my husband and I know he loves me and maybe because we don’t have those connections it is easy for people to discount our love and commitment to each other. I think it’s easy for us to discount our commitment. The last few months have been particularly rough for both of us. My husband turned 40 in prison. He has had 21 birthdays in prison….that alone has to weigh heavily on his mind. So dealing with our marriage has been extremely difficult. We are in the process of getting a divorce. We have not spoken to each other in 2 weeks and have not seen each other in 2 months. This is all his choice. He does not want to talk to me or see me. In his words I am very good at marriage but horrible at being a wife. I don’t even know what to make of that statement. Sometimes I feel like this last year was all a dream that it really did not happen or that I am in some alternate universe and that this really is reality. I am trying hard to stay strong and stay positive. I know all things happen for a reason and maybe the fact that I held on to this idea that he was my soul mate for 20 years and I needed to realize that was not the case. Love never fails….over and over again I have to keep repeating that statement to myself. Love never fails….
This weekend was particularly hard. I vowed I would not go back to visit my husband until he asked me. It was so hard not to see him. Every fiber in my being wants to see him and hug him and just be with him but I know right now that is not where our relationship is at. He would not welcome me. I have been an emotional wreck all weekend. I want to feel normal again and I am not sure when that will happen or if it will ever happen. At the moment it feels like part of me is missing. I want to talk to my husband and share good things and lean on him when I feel like I just can’t go on. I need to understand his pain and be able to take it away. I wonder if he feels like part of him is missing…he keeps saying he will write me but he hasn’t and I don’t suspect he will. I may have to accept the fact that our marriage is over and there will be no explanation. I would have never expected this from him…at the same time I would have never expected this is the way things would have turned out for us at all. It has only been 6 months. We have barely been married. I think about all the things we have never shared and my heart hurts. We’ve never watched a movie together…sat down and had a meal together….fell asleep in each other’s arms….everyday normal things most people take for granted. How can our marriage be over…it has not even started? I am so confused and so hurt. Maybe time and space will help us both heal….
Patience….wow! I don’t really have any at all…I don’t like waiting for anything or anyone. I want results and I want them now. My marriage has been a test in patience for sure. I have to wait to talk to my husband. I have to wait to see my husband. I have to wait for my husband to come home…truly come home. Everything is a waiting game. Wait for letters, call, visits…..well now I am waiting for a decision. I don’t want to be the one who gave up….I don’t want to be the one who threw in the towel…when things got rough that I bailed…I didn’t stick it out. But I don’t want that to be the reason I stayed either. I love my husband…there is no doubt in my heart or mind that I love my husband. He is everything I have ever dreamed of in a man and I know I am lucky to have him in my life but at the same time…I want him to feel the same way about me. I want him to feel lucky that he has someone who wants to be by his side no matter what the struggle is…no matter how hard things get. I just don’t get this feeling from him. He has checked out of our marriage and my heart hurts. I know we need time apart…time to process our feelings about each other…but it is so hard when all I want to do is put my arms around him and smell that spot on his neck that makes me weak in my knees. So this is my test….be patient…give him space….and see what happens.