This day has been coming for weeks yet its arrival still feels too soon. My body is completely drained of energy yet my mind races. I lay behind him, clinging to him as if he were my life support. This ugly blue couch in our living room will be the last place I hold my husband for an entire year. This very night will be the basis for which all I dream. This is the moment I’d give anything to experience over and over.
I tuck myself closer to his chest as I feel his arms tighten around me. The sweet smell of his shaving cream and cologne make me clench my eyes closed; to stop the tears from escaping my eyes. I burrow my head closer into the nook of his arm, unable to get close enough. I take deep ragged breathes, trying to calm the swell of my own emotions. My husband absently strokes my hair as he chuckles at the TV. My temper flares immediately, betrayed by his lack of sensitivity. I jerk my head up. As soon as our eyes lock, my anger dissolves. Even though he’s experiencing this moment in a very different way, I am immediately aware of the sadness in his eyes. Tears flood my cheeks and I dig my fingers deeper into his favorite worn tee-shirt, clinging to the tattered fabric as if were my last breath. My husband, my soul mate, my everything, would soon be leaving for war.
Rough fingertips graze my cheeks, driving away the evidence of my despair. Slowly I melt back into the nook of my husband’s arms and am once again encompassed by the comfort found there. Our bodies entangled together, he murmurs sweet promises of returning home to me. His deep voice, laced with that hint of an Alabaman accent, creates the most amazing love song. As my eyes run out of tears to cry, we slip off to our last night of sleep together intertwined so tightly our hearts beat in unison.
I’m awoken to the soft kisses brushing my fingertips. My eyes flutter open and the most brilliant green eyes come into focus. My husband is kneeling beside the couch where I sleep, just like the day he asked me to be his life. His worn callused hands lift my left hand to his lips and he delicately kisses my wedding ring; the symbol of our wedding vows and the one thing I’ll carry with me every day of my life to remind me of our promises. His lips softly touch mine and he leaves me with the words, “I’ll see you in my dreams”.