My husband met and married me while I was sick: Finding love while chronically ill

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Photo by: Sarah Warden Photography

A few months ago my husband looked at me and said “I really don’t know who healthy Anna is.” And he wasn’t wrong. He met me when I was really sick with Lyme Disease, and I was still fighting it when we got married. I still am fighting it in a lot of ways, I’m still on medication. I’m still trying to get my “normal” back, but most of my life has fallen back in place. I’m blessed. I know a lot of people don’t get this far with Lyme, but something about that line hit me hard, he didn’t know who I was healthy.

We all are different when we’re sick, even if we have the same loves and personality deep down. It gets distorted by pain, our hobbies get dismissed because we’re not able to do them. We struggle to be ourselves when we’re ill. There’s no way to sugar coat it. I was a lot grumpier when I was at my sickest and definitely a lot weaker and less enthusiastic.

But still, I got the love of my life while coming out of this terrible illness. Someone fell in love with me when I was my grumpy unable self. That’s a testament to our love story for sure but it’s also more than that.

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Romantic relationships are partnerships and should be treated like it.

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In Australia they don’t say ‘my significant other’ they say ‘my partner’ because that is what relationships really are, they’re a partnership.  I often see hear people talk about how you shouldn’t rely on your partner, and I agree with 50% of what they’re saying.

I agree that you need to be able to function without them, you need to be able to live if something were to happen to them or if something were to happen to the two of you. But not being able to function without someone and relying on someone are not the same thing. You should be able to rely on your partner. They should be carrying you when you can’t carry yourself. I know that there’s an idea out there that you should never be unable to do things alone, but it’s false, everyone needs help, and sometimes we need a lot of it. I touched on this in my relationships and mental illness post, but the same way they should carry you when you can’t, you should carry them. It’s a two-way street. It’s a partnership.

The whole premise of dating isn’t just for fun, though it’s turned into that over the years, it’s that you’ve got someone by your side to tackle life with. It’s a try out session for the partner that will last you a lifetime. And being a partner means a lot more than being in love with your best friend. It means that you ask each other for permission before making sizable decisions. It means that you seek each others advice on near everything. People hear you talk about these things and think that you’re in a controlling relationship, but that isn’t what its about. It’s about wanting the others opinions and wanting them to agree with you as you make choices that will effect both your lives.

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