Not forgetting that in the looks department, Julian was the most handsome man. He had large brown eyes that had an innocence about them, full perfect lips. His face was youthful, innocent, handsome and kind. I loved his "Popeye" arms. Years of working as a carpenter made his lower arms quite muscular and strong. He would snicker a little when I would tell him to show me his "Popeye muscles", but he would always roll up his sleeves and give me a body builder pose as he flexed. If Julian smiled at you, you could tell he meant it. When he laughed, you felt it. He loved me and I KNEW IT ! He was very affectionate with me and his children. He never left for work - no matter how near or far - without showering us in hugs and kisses and telling the kids and I how much he loved us.
Julian loved me without shame. He talked about me (to other men) with respect and pride. He never talked about our sex life to other men. He used to say "If a man doesn't want his wife, bragging about how she was in bed is a sure way to get rid of her." He called me his "queen" or "the boss lady". He never made me feel stupid or ill-equipped as a mother and wife. Julian was always telling me how much he loved me and was proud of my accomplishments (no matter how small). He lifted me up high above his head with his words. He brought out a confidence in me that I never knew I had.
I was always quick-tempered, but Julian seemed to embrace that. He could turn me around with his words of wisdom. His favorite thing to say to me when I was angry was "Woman, no one can make you angry. You can only make yourself angry. That is your choice." After my initial anger at him saying that to me, I began to understand what he meant and I realized why he was able to move on quickly from any argument or disagreement with anyone. He lived by his motto. He never stayed angry and he never held a grudge.
I used to worry about what others would think of me all the time. I hesitated in trying anything new because I thought others would criticize me. Julian never said that I wouldn't be criticized or judged for things I did, but he did say "Why do you care what your mama or daddy thinks if you quit work to home school the kids ? That's what you want to do, so just do it." or "If you want to make soap, just do it. You never know until you try."
Julian never faulted me for my mistakes. When he saw me trying my best at something, he lifted me up in spirit. Always telling me to keep trying. He believed in me - in my talents - even when I didn't.
He was a hard working man and Julian never said can't. When he set his own mind to do something, he did it ! It didn't matter how hard the work was, it was worth the effort to him to take care of his family.
Julian was a hero to the kids and me. In 2003 when 7 men broke into our home, they beat and tortured Julian while they held the kids and me at gunpoint. Julian never thought of himself. After every blow he screamed out in pain and I heard him pleading for the men to leave the kids and I alone. "Take me out of here and kill me if you want to, but please don't touch my wife and kids." When the men came into the living room and began taunting me and threatening to rape me, Julian cried out in agony, screaming "No, dear God ! NO ! Please, don't hurt my wife !" He could have thought of himself. He took a beating that night that left him unrecognizable, but his first words to me after the incident were "Are you okay, mi amor ? Did they hurt you ?" You can measure a man's love by just how far he'll go to sacrifice himself. We could have been killed that night and no one would ever have known if Julian had tried to spare his own life over ours. When it came down to what could have been our final moments, he was thinking of nothing but his family's safety.
So, do I think Julian was perfect ? Yes, I do. He was a real man. A loving father. An angel walking here on earth. I don't care what minor mistakes he may have made that made him seem imperfect to the world (or even to me at times). He was perfect and there will NEVER be another like him.
I can't wait for the day that I can feel those arms around me again. What a wonderful day it will be to hear his laughter and feel his soft kisses again.