Today ends all the trips back and forth to the hospital. Finally, we get to settle into our home. I catch my breath sitting in front of my vanity. My eyes roam from the figure staring back at me from the mirror and Stella’s signature wig. Memories of my life come rushing back, playing like a projected movie.
The memories stop playing with a gentle touch of my shoulder. I turn a little and look up into my husband’s worried eyes. “Are you okay, my love?” He asks.
“Just walking down memory lane,” I say.
“Good or bad memories,” he says with concern.
“Both,” I say while standing up and wrapping my arms around his neck.
He kisses my lips gently as I place my head against his chest and listen to his heartbeat. I never dreamed my life would turn out the way it is. At some points, it felt near impossible. At other times, it was a sea of people coming and going like ocean waves. Now it is full of love and happiness.
He leads me to our bathroom, and I notice a bath, which smells of lavender, is waiting for me. My love helps me out of my clothes and into the tub. As he washes my hair and bony, I feel the stress melt away from me. After rinsing my body, he opens the stopper to drain the tub while giving me an arm to help me stand up. He wraps me in a towel and lifts me out of the tub.
He dries me off before hopping in the shower. Meanwhile, I put on my pajamas and brush my teeth before heading to the vanity to brush my hair. Exhaustion hits me out of nowhere. So, I climb into bed and close my eyes. I’m about to fall asleep when my husband wraps his muscular arms around me and pulls me into him. A smile spreads across my face making me say a silent thank you to the heavens above for bringing him into my life and for the miracle that he loves me back despite all the baggage filled by my past.
The smell of freshly brewed coffee wakes me, and my eyes spot a coffee cup on my nightstand. Sitting up and grabbing the cup, I bring it up to take my first sip and let the aroma help the liquid wake me up. I’m taking the last sip when the door quietly opens, and my husband enters the room carrying a tray with food on it.
As I silently eat breakfast with my head on my husband’s shoulder, I gaze up at my love and see black circles underneath his red eyes. “You didn’t sleep last night, did you?” I say.
“On and off. I wanted you to rest,” my love admits before kissing my forehead.
“How about you get some sleep?” I offer.
A few hours later, I’m finishing the last of the dishes when I feel arms wrap around my waist. “It smells amazing throughout the house.”
“There is chicken, potatoes, and carrots in the crock pot,” I answer while focusing on my task.
Once I finish, I spin around and wrap my arms around my husband’s neck. A few moments of talk is all we manage until needing to be elsewhere. The rest of the day passes quickly, and I lie in bed only to be surrounded again by memories but in the comfort of my husband’s arms.
As the good and the terrible memories play in my head, I see how incredible my life has been, from the loneliness of my teens to the happiness I have now. For the past couple of years, I’ve thought that meeting my husband is when my life moved into this other path. However, seeing my life flash before my eyes, I can see he was a piece I needed to find, but there was another moment when things began to change.
My name is Elena Packston. Please join me as I tell you about my journey of finding myself but also love. Looking back, I used to fear love, yet it was what ended up saving me and filling up my life with utter joy and peace.
I know I’m not using the traditional author note method, but I have a few things I would like to say that I do not have space for. Firstly, thank you for giving this story a try. Secondly, I’m a little nervous about doing this. As a kid, I remember writing stories and plays for fun. As I grew and writing became more of a struggle, I quit. I read books and listened to music for my solace to fill my spare time. Several story ideas came to me through reading and became stuck in my head. One of those ideas happens to be this story, and after much debate, I’m finally writing it. Lastly, this story is purely fictional, and any scene in it is pure fiction. With that said, I would like to issue a warning.
Warning: This story contains a scene about forced abortion and a scene in two POVs that talks about physical abuse. The chapters with the scenes have a warning, and the scenes are marked by (*) asterisks. These scenes may be disturbing to some readers. Reader discretion is advised.
With much appreciation,