To My Husband: For All He Does for My Mental Health
Days like today, I feel empty and broken. On days like today, my brain rages war with itself.
On days like today, I find myself apologizing for every action or lack thereof. But apologies feed pity, and pity only adds weight to this anchor called depression that has been weighing me down. In an attempt to change the mood I’m choosing to throw out apologies, and in their place show thanks. Because being grateful feeds hope, and hope floats.
So, dear children: Thank you for being happy with peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for dinner.
Dear best friend: Thank you for the phone calls and texts.
Dear husband: Thank you most of all. On days like today, I am reminded of all the little things that made me fall in love with you. Thank you for getting the kids ready for bed while I attempted to distract myself with a senseless YouTube video. Thank you for understanding that my silence wasn’t an act of anger or an attempt to ignore you. And thank you for reassuring me that your silence didn’t mean that as well.
Thank you for following me to the bathroom after I dramatically left the room. Granted I only had to pee… but you wanting to make sure I was OK made me genuinely smile.
Thank you for tucking the kids in for a second time, because for some reason our children just don’t understand that bedtime means stay in bed.
Thank you for sitting outside the shower while I tried to wash away my anxiety. Your silent solidarity comforted me. I didn’t ask you to do this but I’m glad you did. It reminded me I wasn’t alone, despite what the dark shadows of my mind were screaming.
Your silence, which originally gave me peace, became uncomfortable. I couldn’t bring myself to peek around the shower curtain to see if you were still there. My brain started whispering that you got tired of sitting there and left me.
I softly asked, “Are you still there?”
“Yeah. I’m still here, babe,” was your gentle reply.
Thank you for handing me a fresh towel when I got out of the shower.
Thank you for making the bed, so that I can focus only on lying down to rest rather than the number of wrinkles and creases I felt.
Thank you for telling me I’m beautiful, especially on days like today when I find it hard to look in a mirror.
On days like today, when my world seems so small and my problems feel so big, thank you.
Thank you for reminding me that the bad days don’t make me a bad person.
Thank you, my love, for all this and so much more.
Originally published on the author’s blog.
Photo by Jacob Postuma on Unsplash