To my husband,
Thank you for loving me through my times of crippling anxiety.
We’ve been together for almost 16 years. We’ll celebrate nine years of marriage this year. You knew that I had anxiety when we said our vows, but we had no idea what was in store for us when it came to my mental health. You came into my life right after my parents’ divorce when my anxiety was really starting to manifest. I don’t think you understood what anxiety was considering you rarely have an anxious bone in your body, but you chose me anyway. And you continue to choose me every day so there are some things that I want to thank you for.
Thank you for going to the store every week for groceries because it overwhelms and exhausts me sometimes.
Thank you for cleaning the house up just because you know it makes me less anxious. A tidy home makes me feel like I can breathe, and you know that.
Thank you for holding my hand and reassuring me that when we’re driving over a bridge (especially over water) that it won’t actually collapse the moment we’re right in the middle of it. And thank you for trying to make me laugh in the process.
Speaking of those kinds of scenarios, thank you for listening to all of my “what ifs”. What if our kids hate us when they grow up? What if our house catches on fire? What if our kids make really bad choices in their lives that they can’t come back from? What if I die soon? What if you die soon? What will our plan be then? All of the never-ending what ifs that keep me awake at night.
Thank you for reassuring me and making me laugh every single day.
Thank you for holding me while I cry for no particular reason on my rough days. It makes me happy to know that our kids see you dry my tears and your unconditional love for me.
Thank you for grounding me when a panic attack comes out of nowhere.
Thank you for taking all three of the kids after you’ve been at work all day because you know how I desperately need that break some days.
Thank you for doing all of the things after we’ve had each of our babies. Postpartum anxiety hit me hard six months after our oldest son was born. It came again the moment we arrived home after the birth of our daughter, and again the first night after our youngest son was born. The third time was the hardest. The anxiety grabbed hold of me tight in those first few months. You were my hero each time you did what we consider the basic things. You cooked, cleaned, took care of all of our kids, took care of every single thing you could think to do to help me.
Thank you for staying patient, encouraging and supportive while I was trying to manage my anxiety without medication after our youngest was born. Even though you were already on board with my doctor’s suggestion to take anxiety medication.
Thank you for telling me that I’m an amazing wife and mother when I feel like I’m for sure failing in both roles.
Thank you for picking up things on your way home like M&Ms just because you know it makes me smile. It’s the little things that matter.
Thank you for never making me feel crazy, weak, ridiculous or like a burden.
Thank you for always being the positive and uplifting one in our family when I’m not feeling as positive. You help our family get through rough times that make us more resilient on the other side (I’m looking at you 2020).
Thank you for knowing that this isn’t a choice. I did not choose the anxious life. The anxious life chose me.
But most of all thank you for just loving me through the times when my anxiety heightens and becomes crippling. You lift me up (sometimes even physically) when I’m at my lowest. You make living with anxiety easier. You remind me how strong I am and that my brain is telling me lies. The little things that you do don’t go unnoticed.
Thank you for loving me when I’m “like this” and I love that it blows your mind that I would ever think that wouldn’t. I appreciate you more than I can ever put in to words. You tell me that you’re just going what a good husband should do but you’re doing so much more than that and it means the world to me.