Every good love story has it's peaks and valleys, but some of the best ones have highs up in the wispy white clouds, and lows in the dungeons of darkness.
My love story began almost exactly one year and ten months ago when my life was turned upside down with a flippant use of a pregnancy test (the one time in my life I was convinced it was negative). That surprise of reading "Pregnant:2-3 (weeks)" was one of God's greatest moments in my life, I for once was calm and just doing the test at Casey's request. (For the full story, go here: http://eslingers.blogspot.com/2014/03/you-said-theres-what.html).
Those ten months showed me what sacrifice means more than any other experience of my life. I temporarily gave up 90% of what made profesional me, me-- career, aspirations, etc especially in dance (shout out to Ken and Kelly who let me be part of a musical by choreographing a tiny part of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers...). I am forever grateful for you, my friends and family, that supported me through this incredibly trying transition. My daughter ended up being the biggest gift I could ever ask for-- and I would give it up all again (even forever) for her, but that time as a pregnant "dancer" was understandably rocky.
Then the Peanut arrived and Casey's and my heart broke wide open, expanded to be ready for the greatest love we'd ever felt. It is like your worst crush, but amplified times one thousand. You can't wait to see them when apart, and your heart beats a little faster because of them.
You who were and are there for me have become like diamonds-- incredibly valuable and prized. You brought me food, teeny tiny clothes, love and support. You sat and listened while I talked and talked about how different things were. You nodded. You hugged me. You loved me. You loved my precious Peanut.
I cannot tell you how much you mean to me. You, who were and are there for me in my most formative and trying hours. I am currently doing well in recovery for post partum depression-- yes, I said it-- and every week climbing even higher with the help of God's most unselfish Love, Casey's unending support, counseling and regular exercise/dance in my life. I learned that there is a surprisingly high percentage of women who go through this same experience, and yet it is rarely talked about. It needs to be. It is treatable and there is help. Please contact me if you are suffering, I would love to support you.
It is Peanut's first birthday soon. It is also going to be the anniversary of me becoming a Mom, and Casey's becoming a Dad for the first time. We made it. I made it. I really didn't think I would at first. Some of the lows were so low I didn't think I'd ever climb out.
But it turns out I didn't have to climb out by myself. Your love and companionship helped celebrate with me regarding my most incredible gift. In a few days it will be the anniversary of the most blessed moment of my life, when Peanut was born. Also a year since my heart became something completely other and will never be the same. I would never go back to the old heart. Ever. This last year has formed me into the person I was always meant to be, and I don't even want to think about what my life would be like without my Peanut.
So, this is my love letter to you. You who held my hand and heart through this last year. Your sacrifice of love helped me stay afloat and you are a gift from Heaven. You who sat with me in the dark and celebrated with me in the joyful light are my diamonds-- more precious to me than you will ever know.