9 Years Married - Our Journey To The Dark Side and Back Again
People look at me now and can never believe I have been in dark places, that I suffered from depression and anxiety, that there were 6 months I couldn't leave the house without my husband by my side. But there were and I see it in my Facebook statuses. I want to share to let everyone know - there is light at the end of the tunnel.
There is a part of my heart that is permanently scarred - that is the wound that lets light in.
It is also a story of finding joy when every one else thinks you are mad.
"TOO OLD TO PARENT"
Many people thought we shouldn't have had our 9 year old, never mind our 7 and 4 years olds - I was 38, 40 and 42, Ed was 43, 45 and 48 when we had them, we have more patience, more time and so much love - I am not so sure which one we should put back really. My eldest is nearly 22 - that makes for a lot of parenting and life experience between us.
2017 Today 9 Years and More Loved Up Than Ever.
"9 years ago tomorrow I married this amazing man. I think its 12 years since we got together but he is the one who remembers dates. He is my best friend and my soul mate, he supports me in everything I do.
I want to be a Doula and tie us down for months at a time - that's fine.
I fancy a month in Malta - he makes it happen.
I want to go and see Mike Peters and The Alarm again - off we go (tomorrow in fact).
2016 Was Photo Sharing Time.
Sadly I was too sad about Brexit to think about our anniversary - but no doubt as always Ed was there consoling me.
2015 Sees My Husband Lined Up For A Hernia Op.
The Doula in Me Had To Question it.
"Ed is for an op tomorrow - I told him to speak to the consultant about going under General Anesthetic but he decided to leave it til today and speak to the nurse to be told its policy - google tells me it can be done keyhole and with faster recovery - but no this is Gwent NHS so its the longer recovery more complicated way. Of course I would rather he challenged it but I guess it would mean delay".
He ended up having it under a spinal with my support, which meant faster recovery times, just a few hours in hospital and home the same day.
2014 Still Together and Going Strong, I Finally Bit The Bullet and Started Doulaing.
"6 years, love this man, we've been through things where even the slightest crack would have turned into a chasm, but we are more together than ever. Happy Anniversary."
"Well here I go - the new self employed me. My new facebook page if anyone would like to share it, add to it or comment on it. Thank you".
2013 Saw Improvement
We moved house, I still wasn't working and while we were recovering, we had issues with Ed's employer which meant Ed himself went through a 6 month period of finding life a huge struggle and almost lost his job at the time when we most needed support and we nearly lost our new home - moving helped us enormously with a fresh start in a new place and really was the start of a new life and better times.
My husband crashed his motorbike though the stress of it all - with no real physical harm, although that was more through luck than judgement.
He went to the same dark place - thankfully by now I was strong enough to hold us together but it was really hard. These times are not a place I ever want to revist.
I had done my Doula training course in November but hadn't had the confidence to practice.
"Well I lay in my bed - well actually on my floor mattress, and have reached a point of perfect contentment. We live in the house we are supposed to live in, with the beautiful children we are supposed to have.
There was a time when I never thought I'd feel happiness again - and when it's been as hard fought for as this has - I intend to savour ever precious moment of it."
2012 Was Our Year From Hell.
Literally it took us to places so black we never thought we could be happy again.
I went to a place where I thought people could and should die from so much emotional pain, that maybe everyone would be better off without me, I never thought I would recover. I also was not sure we would make through another day at times - never mind a lifetime. It was also the year that gave us our beautiful youngest child who came and brought me back to the present. He was my husbands idea - a way to bring light and that he sure did that.
"Well it's the 3rd of November - the end of a lovely week in Holland and our 4th wedding anniversary today - never expected to be spending it in a caravan in a theme park with 2 small children and a 3rd on the way.
I fell in love with you because you are the kindest and most gentle man, I married you because I enter to spend the rest of my life with you. You make life fun and exciting, even the most mundane things are an adventure with you.
These last 10 months - have tested the "for better, for worse" part, but as long as we have each other we can get through anything.
I wanted to say, very few people will stand up for the truth and do the right thing, regardless of the personal cost to themselves, you are one of those few, you are honest and courageous and if I wasn't already married to you - I'd marry you in a heart beat.
You are an amazing friend, husband daddy and stepdad.
I am posting this here because I want you and everyone else to know - I love you very much, you are my hero. Xxxxxxxxxxxxx"
2011 Third Anniversary
"Love this man so much".
2010 Second Anniversary
"About to go for a meal in the restaurant we had our wedding reception in - Junction 28 in Newport, to celebrate our wedding anniversary, having children with and marrying Ed is the best thing I have ever done in my life, along with having my eldest of course ".
Samantha Gadsden is an experienced Doula based close to Cardiff in South Wales, mother to 4 children and wife to Eddie, more information can be found on her facebook page, Samantha Gadsden Doula and website, Caerphilly Doula.