A day to remember

Clothes ironed, bags packed, IPhone, IPod, Nikon page
and hit the road to see Tom for the first time in almost a year!
Three hundred sixty three days. Three hundred sixty three days is a long time, just a few days short of a year. Three hundred sixty three days. Three hundred sixty three days is how long it took to see my husband face to face.

I went through the "what should I wear," when my husband ensured me, it didn't matter. And he was right. Like he said, we have stayed up all night, drooled, snored, with or without makeup I was beautiful, I could of wore sweats and he would have been happy. But I slowly ironed my clothes, packed up my stuff to take the three hour drive. I was only staying over night but I packed enough for probably three days, I wanted to be prepared.  I made sure to pack as many devices as I could as well, I wanted to capture every step of the way.

While driving down there the day before I couldn't help by imagine what it was going to be like to see Tom. I wouldn't be able to touch him, since he is in a county jail we are forced to visit through glass. I daydreamed of the last day I saw him, the last drive we took together. It made me think of where we once were and where are now because not only was I seeing my husband but it also landed on our first anniversary. We exchanged vows just days before he was extradited at the courthouse. A day I don't regret. The two days which are completely different, seemed so similar.

I was so nervous walking up the steps of the courthouse to say, "I do," and standing outside waiting to be escorted for a visit, was like torture. I was so scared and I am not sure why. I wanted to break down and cry, cry because I was excited, cry because I was nervous, cry because I was overwhelmed. But I held it in, I didn't want to be "that" girl. Crying BEFORE I got to see him? No. I later told Tom how I felt and said how weird that would be, but he quickly corrected me, "It wouldn't be weird, babe. It would be awkward." So I guess I didn't want to be that awkward wife. It was ironic seeing one another for the first time in almost a year on our anniversary. It was almost perfect, perfect in the way that it could be. Perfect in the sense that if he can't be home for it, I would want to be there with him and see him.
We passed through the snow and onto the freeway. 

As I followed the officer, I could feel the flutter of the butterflies in my stomach, the sweating of my hands and my heart, pound, pound, pound - over and over. I sat at the first chair in the room.  As I waited for Tom to arrive - I patiently sat on the horrible plastic chair, jittery and all.

Then there he was. I could feel my smile go ear to ear. It was him. He was no longer an envelope in my mailbox labeled No. 3, he was no longer a prepaid 15-minute call - he was right there, right there in front of me. It was so overwhelming. Going that long without seeing someone, its like you wonder what they look like, especially with the limited communication we have. We both grabbed the germ infested phones, and starred at one another through the thick glass. "Hey Babe," ahhhh - that was nice. To see him say that what amazing. He looks great. You would think that the time, the stress, the lack of amenities - would take a toll on him but he is still so handsome. His smile, his laugh, it was like falling in love with him all over again. He hasn't changed, changed physically, mentally yes, more positive, more looking toward the future. I was afraid of what the year could have done to him. But I didn't need to be - he was still perfect. "Happy Anniversary," we said to one another, Tom replied, "You know what else has been a year? I haven't kissed you or hugged you in a year." He was so right, the last time we kissed or even touched was on our wedding day, when we held hands as we exchanged vows and he kissed his bride.

My husband's "house" for now, but his home is always
here. Before visit photos, happy and nervous!! 
After being apart for so long, we picked up where we had left off. Like it was April 11, 2011, the last day I saw him, when we said our goodbyes. It was as though he never left, as though I have seen him every single day. It truly is amazing to be able to have that person you love, that you have dedicated so much to be right there, right there in front of me.

The hour seemed like 20 minutes, it flew by. But the laughter, the smiles and looking into each other's eyes was worth the three-hour drive for one hour. I wouldn't trade it for anything. I honestly couldn't even tell you what we really talked about. It just happened and it was perfect just the way it was.

We had our notice that time was up we said our goodbyes, to me personally it was depressing. I didn't want to leave him. I didn't want to leave him behind, while this facility has become his "house," his home was with me. The only way it could have gotten better is if I could have hugged him. I remember having this huge, SIGH, mad and upset that I had to go, that he had to leave. So I waited to be escorted out of the building again. As I walked to the car, I debated on whether I should shed the tear that was on the edge of falling. While I was sad, sad to leave, sad that this was still like this, sad that we have to continue on this way still - I was strong. I was strong that we have done this, strong to continue on every single day - I never cried. On the journey home, memories that I had pushed to the back of my mind of Tom and moments we shared, rushed to me all over again. It made me miss him even more.

After visit photos, so calm, cool and collected.
Even days later it seems like the visit makes me miss Tom even more. Yet, I think it was exactly what we needed. Tom has been gone for awhile, he has to mostly on the east coast while I have been on the west coast. Sometimes you get in a rut of the "what are we doing." And it made me realize that I am doing exactly what I should be doing, because I love him. I love Tom and if this is his life, this is my life. It gave our relationship a boost. A boost to our love, that we aren't in the "Okay babe," and the "love yous," it has made us more in love, rekindle our love really.

I feel so lucky to be able to see my husband and have the amazing connection we have even being apart. Its an amazing feeling. It was an amazing visit, on the perfect day, the perfect time, with the most perfect person. It truly was a day to remember.

1 comment

  1. Beautiful inspiring words. So happy you got to see Tom!


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