I loved being married: coming home to someone who was genuinely interested in spending his life with me; feeling love; giving love. Now, I did not have unrealistic expectations of marriage. We both knew it would take work. But we were happy. We bought a house in 1999. We took some fun vacations. We enjoyed each other. After four years of marriage, we were blessed with the birth of our son in 2002. Becoming parents was hard at times (as any parent knows) but we truly loved our son and enjoyed moving from being a couple to being a family.
Of course, not everything was sunshine and roses. Life certainly threw us a fair share of curveballs: deaths of his grandparents, a medical crisis for him, two job losses for him, a medical condition with our son, major house repairs, depression, financial challenges, etc. Sometimes it seemed that there was a black cloud over us and bad things just kept coming our way. At times our marriage was stressed, but I was always convinced that these were the ebbs in the "ebbs and flows" of marriage. The relationship got harder, but I just kept telling myself that if we could get through that particular crisis, things would be better, he would be happier, we would be happier.
Then, in December 2004, came the day when my life was turned upside down in an instant.