Dedicated to the one I love

"What doesn't kill you makes you stronger," I almost feel like that saying could be a motto for Tom and I. We haven't even been married for two years and it's like we have been through the hardest times of our lives. After getting through almost a year and a half of a prison term and then seven months labor watch our greatest creation be poked and prodded to help save his life has been difficult to say the least. While Tom was away I felt like it was my responsibility to "take care" of everything, the homestead, myself and make sure he was comfortable. It was a long road but we survived and it did make us stronger. 

Now seven months after his release we are put into another stressful and consuming situation, yet this one is much bigger than us, because I am sure each of us would sacrifice for Cooper. 

While I life flighted to Boise, Tom was right there. Every step of the way. When my water broke and I was life flighted to Missoula, Tom was right there. Every step of the way. And I am sure some people are thinking, "Well of course, he should be." But this a major situation in our lives and it was the first Tom was even able to be there, besides you never know how someone will be or act until you are right there in the situation. 

So as the two grueling days of being in Missoula passed and Cooper was about to arrive, I began to break down. I was so afraid of the what ifs and what could happen to Cooper and if he would even make it. I know Tom was afraid too, but he comforted me in every sense. 

Once Cooper was born and even to this day honestly, I felt helpless. Here is our little baby boy born 16 weeks early and really because of me and my body and he couldn't come home, we couldn't really interact with him and he is tested, x-rayed, blood drawn etc. etc. Tom comforted me. 

I couldn't begin to really explain what it is like to expected the unexpected with your very own child but to also have such an amazing husband who carries ME through this. I have been a complete wreck. I cry over everything, everything. I am happy. I am sad. I am overwhelmed and I am stressed but I know Tom is right there with me. He rubs my back, wipes my tears and will just hug me. If it's a day when he is home, he will listen, try to understand and help in any way he can. 

The first time Tom had to leave Cooper and I to go home and work was torture, I cried the entire way home. But the day I finally got to see him again was amazing. I was more excited to see him that day then I was when I picked up from prison. It is this weird sense of "missing" him now that we have Cooper, it's like my family is broken while he is gone. 

But when Tom is here, everything makes sense. 

Tom has completely stepped up in a way I could never imagine. I know Tom is experiencing what I am experiencing. I know he is afraid, I know he worries and yet he rarely breaks down. He is continued to be a pillar of strength throughout this because I know there is a lot riding on his shoulders. Tom is juggling working in Salmon, traveling to Missoula every single week not to mention, his son in NICU and his wife away from home. I no longer work so Tom's income is it, and while it may not be a lot Tom is doing an incredible job. 

I always felt like I was lucky to have Tom but seeing him interact with Cooper only shows how lucky I really am. Tom loves little Cooper with his entire heart, I can see it when Tom talks to him, changes his diaper and holds his hand. I feel as though Tom has been such a strong man through all of this, and yes we have had some good cries but we never let the bad break us down. 

I am really lucky, because even though I am mom, Tom as dad as a lot of stress too. Because of Tom and his hard work and dedication I am able to see and "spend time" with Cooper every single day. And I know Tom would love to be able to be here. And while he is gone, he does miss out on some of Cooper's accomplishments and I feel bad for that. 

I know this situation won't always be "easy" on our marriage but at the same time I know we both have the skills and love for each other and Cooper to communicate, support and love deeply. 

So here's to my husband: 
Tom, thank you for everything you do not only for me and Cooper but for the sake of our family and marriage. You have truly been an inspiration to me personally, you have grown and conquered so much in the past few years I am nothing but proud to call you my husband. Thank you for your continued support and love even when I don't deserve it. Thank you for taking on more responsibilities during our tough times and never complaining about it. Thank you for always being right by my side or just a phone call away. You are my one and only, my rock, my support system and I love you for all of that and more. Thank you for being you. You truly are the best thing that has ever happened to me and I am ever so lucky to call you my husband! 

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