Another one....

I move into my own place with a friend until my husband gets home, I get away from the nonsense, the drama and I only find myself even more lonely. Another lonely night. I miss my husband a lot tonight, and I don't even have any tears left. I just wish my skin could touch his, my hands to rest in his. My nightly letters have just been sharing my heartache and how much I miss him, how depressing for him. I can't explain the feeling, the jealousy of happy couples 'together' for we are happy but what about our 'together.' What can I do to shake this? What are the steps for me to become stronger?

I seem to have slipped into a deeper depression, where I just want to roll over to him, instead of an empty space in my bed. I want to look over and see his smiling face instead of the dark. Friends and family can only help so much, where can I step in for myself?


Here I am its just barely 2 a.m. and my eyes refuse to shut and my mind refuses to quit tonight. Nights like these I feel like I should be laying with him and looking into his eyes, sharing my day with him, or sharing my heartache or my happiness yet I tend to keep my heartache to myself and happiness doesn't come very often. This week has most certainly gotten the best of me, I am tired of everyone getting involved in my life or constant harassment and it all fall onto my shoulders since my husband is in prison. My shoulders are getting weak and my back is getting tired, then what happens? Do all your worries and troubles just pile up from the floor up? How can I get over this hump? My depression has seem to settle just a little more, which scares me. And my husband, Tom, doesn't want to hear about this stuff when we talk. I am on a fence, the good versus the bad, now what? Why are my bad days getting more frequent and more intense? I just miss my husband, I miss my best friend so much right now.

I'm Struggling Too!

Today is a bad day. I wish I could say that I've never had one before, but bad days consume my life. I have no escape from them. Today is a day when I wonder… Where is the support for me in-this-struggle?"
When a man asks a woman to wait for him while he's in prison, does he realize what an incredible emotional sacrifice it is? Does he realize the pain and never-ending loneliness that attaches itself to her heart and soul? Does he realize that yes; we are in this struggle too?
When I made this choice to do this bit with my man I didn't know what it would mean to consciously hand over the control and happiness of my life…not to my man, but to an institution. From the very beginning, my man told me that I had the power in the relationship because I was the one who was free.
How am I free? What power do I have?
I buy my clothes according to what is acceptable for visits. At anytime, I can go anywhere my heart desires, but my heart's desire is trapped within that prison compound. So, where am I going? I stalk the mailman and won't leave the house until he comes, waiting for a white envelope with that familiar handwriting that has taken the place of hugs and kisses. I check the phone several times a day to make sure it's working, waiting to hear it ring and see "unavailable" appear on the caller ID, a sight that has taken the place of the sound of my doorbell or his car horn.
I set my watch to the clocks in the prison. I schedule my bedtime around "Count." No, I don't have any power. The phone company has the power. The prison and the guards have all the power. Today, I feel helpless and out of control. Today surely is a bad day, and yes, I am struggling too.
Today, like most of my bad days that pass, I see a little bit of my life that has slipped away; another memory not made, another dream that doesn't come true. Another day my son wont know what its like to have a father in his life, One more day my family is separated. One more day I'm without a real home. I am so often standing on the line between sanity and insanity, I have to keep telling myself, "He's real, this is real, our love is real, and the end will come."
Today when he called I had to fight off the urge to beg him to come home to me. "Please come home. If you really loved me, you'd find a way." Today I blame him for keeping us apart. Today I am so very angry with him. Today is definitely a bad day, and yes, I am struggling too.
A good day can turn bad in the blink of an eye, a tick of the clock, or a beat of my heart. I am on an emotional roller coaster that changes course without warning or consideration for my mental state. It never asks permission. Attacks of loneliness, despair, confusion, and frustration hit me and consume me from the bottom of my feet to the top of my head and every crevice of my body in between. Some bad days I want to curl up in my bed and sleep. Sleep the days away. Some bad days I can't sleep or even eat. Sometimes I have to make my heart beat and my lungs take in oxygen. Suicide is never a thought, but dying from loneliness is always a possibility.
Today I have no answers that make sense to me for the thousands of questions running through my head. My mind is cluttered with doubts and confusion and this makes my heart heavy with guilt and shame. How could I question the one real joy I have in my life? There are so many people who are lonely, without love and passion in their lives, so as difficult as this ordeal is, I know that what he
and I share is the most precious of all gifts.
But today, I can't remember all the unconditional love, support, and non-judgment that my man has bestowed upon me. Today I can't remember that my man is the only one who really understands and accepts me, and the good and the bad. Today, I can't remember all the desire and passion that my man has brought out of me. Today, I can't remember that he plays no games, tells no lies, and wears our love like a badge of honor. Today, is obviously a bad day, and yes, I am struggling too!
While I wouldn't change one second, erase one tear, or forget heartache, I can truly understand why a woman would choose not to wait. The reality is that I am in prison too…I am also doing time and the only thing I am guilty of is being in love with my man.
For every one of us who stands by our man, that can endure the bad days and savor the good, there are many who can't. Many just don't even try. To the men whose women have chosen to move on, you must always remember that there are always two sides to every story. Your women might not tell you what's in their hearts, but if you listen hard enough you can hear them. You can hear their confusion and their fear pleading with you to understand, to forgive, to accept, and to remember…
Not every woman is strong enough to endure the bad days that the struggle brings. Thank God, I'm strong enough!
Author Unknown

Everyone has their own theory of when they world may end, some say its tomorrow, May 21, 2011. While some people have their doubts, do any of us really know? As I sit here tonight and thing of what if tomorrow never comes, what if the world does come to an end, I think: Have I lived like I wanted? Have I accomplished everything I wanted? Did love who I wanted or was I loved how I ever wanted? The worse part about world coming to an end, that in my last seconds I will not be in my husband's arms, I will not be able to look into his eyes, kiss his lips or even whisper I love you. So here's to tomorrow, hoping its not the end and that I will get that chance to kiss my husband, and tell him I love you him while looking into his eyes.

To Only share sunrises with him again <3

" So . . . I got to read my mail that I got today from this sexy girl I know, she has the most beautiful eyes and prettiest smiles! She's funny and amazing! She makes me feel good whenever I see, hear, think or just read a letter from her! Her name is the one and only, Annette Lewis! MY WIFE! I love you so much baby"

Totally worth everything!


"I'm proud of you baby, I don't talk to one person about you rather, I brag to everyone about you! You're my baby, my best friend, my life and my wife!" I cannot explain how wonderful it is for your lover, your husband to say you are his best friend. That is a true gift. Of course you share things with each other and have secrets but to be each other's best friend is the best feeling in the world. I never in my life felt so loved, ever.

This little guy was a present from me to Tom when he was sick in bed right before he left. Now that Tom is gone, he has been adopted as my sleeping buddy, he even wears Tom's cologne. =]

And this is our love story.

This is a love story, one not generally discussed in public. But if there's one thing that I do know about myself it's that I know I hate secrets, secrets mean shame, and that I am not now, nor will I ever be, ashamed that I am a woman who has loved someone, and that someone has loved me. And even though people have asked me if I have lost my mind, if I am lonely or desperate. Even though so many people have wondered if I was having a crisis, or determined that I was just going through a phase. I will continue loving the man I am loving. I will love him even though he's got an ugly past, skeletons and sorrow. Even though he doesn't have a great job, or position or power, and even though he has is a prisoner at a correctional facility, which my husband Tom is, I will continue loving him. And this is our love story.

Another Thursday night had me waitressing at my father's restaurant. Tom walked in with his grandmother, sitting at table three and ordered ice tea. His eye were piercing blue as he ordered his dinner. I worked as he ate, curious of who he was, his name and where he was from. When he was finally done with his dinner, I bid him fair well, telling myself just to at least ask his name. After leaving he came back about 20 minutes later for dessert, but will later find out to get my phone number, which he was too chicken to ask for. I dished up the pieces of cake and watched him walk out for the second time. I never got his name, I was left with his cologne lingering in the restaurant.

We wouldn't see one another for at least a week, when we met for dinner at a local pub. We sat in the corner with one another the lights were dim and Tom and I shared who were were, or at least who we thought we were at that time in our lives. We parted ways later that night and wouldn't see each other until the night he cooked dinner for me. I went to his house where prepared a meal and we shared the couch watching movies, and learning more about one another, where we shared our first kiss. "How about a birthday kiss," Tom said with only about an hour before midnight which would be his 30th birthday. I opted out an said, "It's not your birthday yet." I was nervous as can be, yet I wanted to feel his lips to mine so bad.

He finally got his wish, our lips locked and it was everything I wanted, everything I expected. We would call ourselves a "couple" the following night, January 15, 2011, his 30th birthday. Celebrating his birthday we were sitting on barstools, when he took my phone and wrote, "celebrating my man's birthday," his way of asking me out. And from that night on, were with one another everyday.

One night Tom and I were sitting on my couch when he told me he needed to share something with me, he told me somewhat of his past, and the situation he was in. He told that soon enough, not sure when, but in the future he would probably be arrested and taken back to New jersey for a parole violation. What Tom was doing was setting up a foundation of honesty and trust. I see this now, but then I was not ready, and I did not understand. I was not prepared for Tom, the man I was beginning to love, the man I was beginning to enjoy loving to evaporate, in his place no one be there. From that moment on, everything was on the table, open forth coming and more and we tried to enjoy every single day, like it could be our last.

That "one day" came March 23, the day I went home sick from work, I gave his a kiss goodbye, "I'll be back soon, it won't take long," he said, "I love you," and he never came back. It wasn't soon enough. I found myself sitting at the kitchen table with two US Marshals, I felt like it was a dream, I kept it together, I didn't cry until I went downstairs to grab my shoes. I fell apart in his mom's arms. I felt like it was a joke, a nightmare. But soon enough he called from the local jail, "I'm sorry babe," were the first words out of his mouth. Sorry? I couldn't expect him to be sorry, for we both knew the situation, by loving him, by continuing in this relationship, I took on the responsibilities of this. Sorry, wasn't called for. From this night on, my life changed.

That night began my first letter to Tom, "We both knew this time would come, I guess i wish it was tomorrow and not today, ya know. First thing is first, you have nothing to be sorry for. You have been nothing but honest with me, and with that I agreed to this deal. I'm not mad, I just wish I have hugged you, kissed you or at least lock eyes with you. I would be lying to you if I said I am fine. I am lost. I am lost without you....."

The first time I was able to go visit him which was a day later I was scared. I didn't know what to expect, what I would see, if I would cry or what. I signed the sheet Annette Ungaretti to see Thomas Lewis, I walked into the room where three backless stools were. I picked the first one where Tom was on the other side of the glass, black and white stripes. He didn't look different, like I almost expected him too. I just wanted to touch him, feel that he was okay. Freedom and having the perfect love beside me again, I knew these things never seemed impossible or distant. Rather they were a tease, only barely out of my reach. If only I was granted one inch were could be touching again, hand in hand or at least fingertip to fingertip.

This continued everyday, I was lucky enough to see him six days a week and continued to write him every single night. I always expressed all my love for him. What most people don't realize is how real our love is, it isn't a corny card or a hug our love is completing one another. As Tom puts it in his letters, "you are all the things that I'm not." Tom and I are the combination of love and hate, beauty and ugly - we both pasts and we both have futures. I never missed a visitation and I adopted a habit of dropping a letter at the post office every single day. My first letter arrived March 29. It was a combination of him professing his love, sharing his hurt and in the long run how scared he was to go to New Jersey and me not being able to handle it.

The word marriage surfaced in a letter I received April 4, "Babe, being in here has just made me realize how much I love you and need! I feed as though you are my perfect match. You are everything that I'm not which mean you complete me. I love you with all my heart baby! I can't imagine myself with anyone else but you! You have stuck with me through this all and I couldn't be happier. I was afraid you wouldn't be able to handle this, but again you surprise me about how strong you have been through it all. That is why I would be the happiest person on earth if you are true about getting married. I would be happy to take your hand and start a life together, and have kids and start a family together."

I wrote to Tom, " . . . Marriage, I honestly have never been happier. It blows my mind how in love I am with you, how happy you make me. To take your hand in marriage makes me the luckiest woman. We compliment one another, and fit perfectly . . . " dated April 5.

Two days later I drove to the courthouse, no flowers, no special dress. Tom's mom, sister, niece and my friend Tessina were all there to witness as Tom and I became Mr. and Mrs. Lewis. He was escorted in, yes he was wearing stripes. Tom and I stood there looking into one another's eyes, resiting our vows, promising eachother our loves forever, and holding hands. "First day as a married woman, Annette Lewis. Yesterday we said I do, in sickness and in health, till death do us part, you took my hand looked me in the eyes and in that moment I knew I made the right decision. Standing next to you saying I do is the best day of my life. You are good for me just as much as I'm good for you. While how it happened is nothing compared to how we want to get married, we both know that it will happen, besides the love is all that matters," I wrote in letter dated April 8 to Tom.

April 11 was the last day I saw Tom, the visitation seemed so short. I kept it together, we had a strict no crying policy, but I looked back just to see him one more time. As I drove away I watched the courthouse in my mirror, hoping, maybe thinking he could just be there waving for me to turn around. I got a call around 5 p.m. that day from another inmate, he just said, "they came and got Tom today," at that very moment I pulled over and starting crying. Forget the policy, my husband, the love of my life was taken after just four days of being "official" and the worst part is I didn't know the next time I would hear his voice or even see him. Luckily, he was taken to Missoula where he would catch an early flight to New Jersey the next morning, he warned me that we may not be able to talk for 30 days but he would try and write.

Tom arrived in New Jersey, staying at Central Reception and Assignment Facility until he is transfered until a state prison. He is lock down 22 hours a day, sees outside every other day, now has no privacy. Our marriage consists of pressing 3 to accept his calls, letters read and scrutinized. I try not to even read Tom's letters until hours later, when it is dark and into the night. I want to be sure I wouldn't be interrupted and to read every single line for what it's worth. When Tom calls, I try to picture him in front of him, telling me all these things, good and bad. I try and see him smile, see the laugh and feel that touch I so miss. His letters are sometimes sporadic, but getting more frequent, while he receives one everyday. I look forward to the ring of his mother's phone and 3 p.m. just to open the mailbox.

I will travel to New Jersey to meet my husband at the gates on the day he will be released, it will be late summer and I know I will have butterflies in my stomach and my heart will be racing. To bring my husband home is going to be the best feeling in the world and to know my husband, Tom Lewis is taking care of his past to begin our future is the best gift I could ever get. I love him, with my entire heart, through my soul, every ounce of me.

I feel in love with a man who wanted to become his own more perfect creation, a man committed to the transformation of himself, of the world. And the world he imagined was like the world I imagined. I feel in love with man that I could really explain, all I could say is he loves me, and I love him. I fell in love with a felon, I married a man while in jail yet I married the most genuine man, I fell in love with someone who makes me happy, I fell in love with a man that I am proud to call my husband.

We were never meant to be together (Idaho to New Jersey, good girl, bad boy) yet we were always meant to save each other and that's exactly what we have done. He says I complete him, that I have made him better but in reality Tom completes me and has made me better.

Our love story is not typical but its typical for us. Mr. and Mrs. Lewis are happy, happily in love even under the circumstances.

Strong and Never Broken.

This is it....

Everytime Tom and I talk on the phone I sit on his mom's porch, in my favorite wicker chair. We share laughs, tears and more, today a day really wanna talk to him, it seems we have missed each other. The phone is still silent as I sit here rocking waiting for that call.
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