I wanted to write this post to honor Elliot – my fiancé, best friend and everything in between. I called it “journeying together” because I can’t find a better way to say it. I think that the title alone could sound ridiculously cheesy and stop you from reading the rest of this blog, but I ask you to bare with me and continue…
I’ve thought quite a lot about writing this, while not wanting to sound wishy washy or repeat the phrase, “I’m so in love”… (Im hoping the latter is obvious anyway.) I kept typing, deleting, typing, and so on, to come back to the same blank space.
And that’s not because I don’t have anything to say – it’s quite the opposite. So while I could probably write a whole book on the amount that I love Elliot and why, I’ll spare you all your sanity and try to keep the puke meter low!
Before writing this post, I went back to the start of my blog to remind myself what I initially wanted its purpose to be. I wanted to have a space to be able to write, to try and process my million musings, and to show the world that there is more to me than the perfect life that you so often show on social media. I wanted it to be full of truth and love, and to share a bit of my heart.
Well, this is my heart. If you don’t know our journey, it started in 2013 when my friend Jess thought she’d cheer me up by setting me on a blind date with a guy called Elliot. Apparently my sister Ana and I looked at his Facebook profile and decided it was a ‘go’ – except I had just come out of ICU after major surgery, and don’t even remember said conversation! But one week later I was reminded of it when Jess rang me in hospital to say she’d given my number to Elliot. I cringed in disbelief – I’d never been on a bloody date, I had a brace to help heal my broken chest, I couldn’t walk far, and hadn’t eaten much for a couple of weeks; it certainly wasn’t the time to meet anyone, let alone a boy! But I took a deep breath and fought the urge to cancel. After all, life is short so why not have some fun! I googled “what to do/not do on a first date” (and other cringy things), and promised myself if it went terribly wrong I would ring Jess and laugh about it over a bottle of wine. I hadn’t made a plan for if it did work out…
Little did I know that the date was the start of the biggest and best journey of my life thus far. I will probably remember that day for the rest of my life. The next months were full of new adventures and experiences, and my recovery definitely seemed to fly by! In my final year of university I tried my hardest to not get distracted – but this turned into dating in normal hours and studying all night! Since the day I met Ells I haven’t been the same person.
I was kindly reminded by my cousin Frankie that the last time I was in the UK I was set on the fact that I was going to grow old alone, and end up with lots of cats! I felt resigned to this life, although not because I didn’t want a relationship. You see, I’ve always been the independent type. I was the one who skipped off to nursery school instead of crying for my mum (sorry mum!) and I have always been determined not to rely on people. But being sick has taught me that this is sometimes impossible. In saying that, I was still determined that a boy would never complete me, and I was certain that my independent tendency would mean that I would never let down my guard for another person.
I used to think the term “better half” was simply a lovey-dovey term. I always came from the perspective that you need to be a whole person and really know who you are, and that in a relationship you are always two whole people who happened to meet. Although I think it is still crucial to know and love yourself first, as my relationship with Elliot has continued, I’ve come to learn that it is actually more about sharing than I realised! If you each share and invest your “better” half into the relationship, you make a whole together. Moving to England ahead of Elliot, I noticed (more so than normal) that he has constantly encouraged me to be my better half at all times. I knew I’d miss him, but I didn’t expect to feel that when I left him, I left a part of myself behind too. It a weird feeling to even describe, and certainly not something that I thought I’d feel in my lifetime.
Being in a relationship has taught me a lot of things, but especially about sharing. Elliot was probably the first person I shared my ‘feelings’ with. The first person to witness me crying in the middle of the night time and time again. To encourage me and keep me focused at all times, even when he was stressed. To watch me be sick (and I sometimes think the trauma for those who love you is worse than the trauma you feel yourself). To see me and love me when I completely let my guard down for the first time. To love me for ALL who I am, the shitty parts included. And this list could go on, although the same goes for my feelings towards him too. I get all fuzzy thinking that this time next year we’ll be standing in front of our closest family and friends to make a life commitment to each other. To promise to love each other through all times.
A lot of my friends dream of their perfect wedding day. They’ve played weddings all their lives and been in awe of brides. But I was always slightly different. I seriously thought I was going to spend the rest of my life like the girl in “27 Dresses,” being everyone else’s bridesmaid. But out of the blue my time has come much quicker than expected. Many people have told us it’s “far too early” to know if we love each other, but I couldn’t have been more sure to say “yes”.
Actually, Elliot tells me I didn’t say yes when he proposed. I just cried and nodded and cried some more. I was shaking too hard to even touch the ring.
He has already shared some of my highest highs, my biggest fears, and my toughest parts of my life so far, so it is exciting to see where the next chapter of our lives will take us.
So to Ells, I cannot wait for you to join me in less than a few weeks time, to write more chapters of our journey together, more countries to the list (well to start yours), to love each other through the good times and bad. I couldn’t think of a better person to spend my life with, so thanks for being “my other half” and making me the best version of me. I am so proud of you all the time, and I hope that I always make people feel pukey when I talk about you, because I never want to fall out of love with you. And sorry for the PDA but hey. I love you more than banoffee pie and wine!