Let’s Talk About Sex, (and) Babies!
Side Bar: This is not a pregnancy announcement. 😂
On September 20, 2017, my husband and I will have officially been together for 5 years! That’s the exact day we met, and that’s what we consider our anniversary. Why don’t we count our wedding? Well, we had two. It’s confusing. Neither one of us knows which to celebrate. So, instead, we celebrate the day we met because we basically considered ourselves married from day one. Seriously. We met, spent 3 solid days together, then moved in together two weeks later, engaged 6 months later, and then married…twice.
Sounds like a fairytale, right? WRONG.
I mean, it started like one. He was everything I didn’t know I wanted, and everything I knew I needed. We were young and head over heels in love, and he swept me off my feet with romance. We built a home together, adopted a few (or more than a few) fur babies, and settled into our lives as a couple.
It was goddamn perfect.
And then it wasn’t so perfect.
Adulthood hit with a fucking sledgehammer to the face.
The next 2-3 years were hell. First, our home burned down a few weeks before our wedding. FUN. Then, family caused a shit ton of drama surrounding the wedding plans, and that was fucking miserable. Then, our cars were totaled in two separate car accidents. Then, our insurance didn’t pay for fire damages and we had to move far away and to Murderville because we were practically bankrupted by the fire and the wedding and the cars and the irresponsibility of being 23 and not knowing how to handle money.
Did you think that was it? Oh, no. There’s more!
Next, my husband got ill and it took months and months to figure out what was wrong and how to get his illness under control with medications. Then, my husband basically lost his job due to said illness and was royally fucked over by his employers. Oh, and then our dog was accidentally poisoned and almost died, and our other dog was discovered to have cancer. During all of this, we suffered multiple miscarriages and went through failed fertility treatments (which seriously suck, by the way). *sigh*
Basically, what I’m trying to say is that life got shitty, and unfortunately, our relationship did, too. Neither one of us knew how to handle these stressors and tragedies, and instead of banding together and helping each other through it, we took out our pain on each other. There was so much fighting, lying, anger, selfishness, distrust, and a shit ton of other crappy behavior that seemed like it would be impossible to ever come back from. Our marriage quickly tanked, and divorce was discussed more than once.
Honestly, it fucking sucked.
I’ve never felt like more of a failure than I did at the end of 2016 when I realized I might actually be a divorcee soon. And it was the last thing I ever wanted–especially from Justin. He was, and is, perfect for me. I love him with all my heart. I always would. So why couldn’t it just work? Why was it so hard? This shouldn’t be happening.
The most difficult part was I felt unable to talk to anyone about it. I am a romance author. I sell love for a living! How could I tell people that I’m destroying my very own happily ever after? How can I sell happiness when I’m not?
On a personal level, I didn’t want to talk to friends or family about it very much. I didn’t want them to pick sides or to hate him. I didn’t want them to judge us for our failures, especially when some family has just been eagerly waiting for us to fail since day one. I carefully and cautiously picked and chose what I told to who, and who got to see into my life–though no one ever got the full picture.
I was hurting. Badly. My motherhood was ripped from me time and time again. My marriage was disintegrating. My career felt like a fraud. My friendships felt distant as I pushed them away.
I was so alone, and it was partially my own fault.
It was time to make some changes. I couldn’t keep living the way we were anymore. First, therapy. So. Much. Therapy. I began going every week on my own to a therapist, and Justin and I went every week to a marriage counselor. Honestly, it made everything worse. It fucking sucked. I’ve never worked so hard in my entire life.
But then it wasn’t worse. In fact, it was a lot better. It was actually kind of amazing.
That’s kind of what therapy does. It tears open the old wounds that never properly healed, slowly cleans them out while you’re screaming and writhing in pain and begging it to stop, then stitches it back together and allows you to heal for the first time ever.
I went on vacation by myself for the first time, healing my old wounds. Justin finally found what combination of medication he needed to manage his illness with minimal side effects. He also found a new job, one that actually fulfills him and lifts his spirits. Finally, we moved back to our favorite area and out of Murderville.
We learned to talk to one another again. To get out of our own ways, and stop holding our pains against one another. We slowly…so slowly…began to open up again, and come together. We began talking about the future again…believing we actually have a future.
We began to fall in love again, with each other and with ourselves.
Why am I telling you this long story? Well, it’s actually just the preamble. A year later, our relationship is still repairing and still learning, but we’re happy. We’re in love again. We know that after having gone through all of that divorce is no longer an option. We made it through the worst.
Now that we’ve done the work/are doing the work (because it’ll never really be over since we’ll always need to be working on our relationship in order to keep it healthy), we’re ready to begin trying for a family again. We both want to be parents. Hell, being a mother has been my dream since I was a little girl. I have no doubt in my mind that Justin would be an amazing father–so loving, kind, and a strong example of the type of man I’d want my future sons to be.
You know what that means? BABY MAKING TIME!
Here’s the kicker, though. The moment we were finally able to have everything we wanted–a family–we realized we actually didn’t want that at all. At least, not yet. The truth is, we weren’t ready to be parents because we hadn’t just been a couple yet. We’d been together for almost 5 years, and yet we hadn’t really been able to enjoy that time as a young, married couple. We had spent so much time trying to keep it all together and make ends meet, that we hadn’t just stopped and enjoyed life!
But, don’t get me wrong, we still want to be parents. We just want to be us first. I mean, I’ll only be 28 years old on September 23rd–I HAVE TIME, GUYS. I’m still so young and vibrant. 😂 (Side note: You’re welcome to start buying birthday presents for me now, kthxbye!)
So, we hatched a plan! We made a pre-baby bucket list! It’s exactly what it sounds like–a fun list of things we want to do before we come parents. Honestly, I think we can get most of it done this fall and then start trying again for a baby in the spring, but we’re not putting any pressure on it right now.
Our list has 10 things to do together, and then 3 separate things for each of us. I’m super excited, and we’ve already got some things in the works!
Ready for our list? Read below!
6) Take a couple’s cooking class
7) Visit Chicago for a weekend
Go to Oktoberfest and wine festivals with friends, and drink all the booze, all the time. (Done, and I’m still hungover.)
9) Take at least 2 day trips to new places on random road trips with no scheduling ahead of time (Took a day trip to an orchard, first down!)
10) Sell our children’s book series (See PJ Marsie)
Individual Pre-Baby Bucket Lists:
– Finish edits on the secret non-romance project and sell (Sarah)-
I really need to get on this.
– Sign a new book deal (Sarah)- Coming soon!
– Sell audio and/or print rights to my self-pub book(s) (Sarah)-Working on it!
– Skydiving (Justin)
Go to his first NFL game (Justin)–
Done! Justin attended a Jets game on October 1st, and then a Ravens game on October 15th!
– Drive an exotic car (Justin)
*Items crossed off means we’ve completed them!