Sixteen years ago today on May 2nd, 1998, Julian and I were married. I really wanted at least a small service with friends and family and the chance to wear a pretty dress, but my adoptive mother said I was "used goods" and even attempting a wedding ceremony would be "wrong in the eyes of God". My adoptive father told Julian he was an idiot for marrying my "ugly ass". Despite those "obstacles", Julian loved me enough to want me for his wife. We took his cousin and a friend as witnesses and my adoptive mother's pastor at the time married us at the alter of his church.
Julio - who was only 6 weeks old - slept soundly in his carrier. My other three children stood next to us as we said our vows. We were so nervous, we both placed the rings on the wrong hand (no one seemed to notice until we got the pictures back a week later).
Besides having my beautiful children, the one thing I did right in my life was marry Julian Gomez Mazaba. He saw through the hurtful words of others and caught a glimpse of my heart and soul. He saved me from self destructing by simply letting me be myself. He understood my nervous ticks. He saw that the anger came from pain and not a hateful nature. He could sooth my soul by just saying, "I love you, mi amor. Everything's going to be okay."
I'm not falling apart as I write this. I'm remembering what a blessing I had with Julian in my life. People can talk. They can say hurtful things. They can lie and try to make me out to be something I'm not. They can even hold my past mistakes against me....Or they can try, but there is no going back. I don't have to care what anyone else thinks. For once in my life, I am sure of who I am.
I am overjoyed that I was loved by Julian. I am worthy of love. I am the person Julian saw me to truly be. I made mistakes as a mother, but I love all of my children with all of my heart. I love my adoptive mother and father who never saw me as quite good enough.
Sixteen years ago today, God sent an angel to breathe life into my hollowed soul. I will not let Julian's life (or death) be in vain. I will live the life he meant for my children and I to live. We will rejoice. We will be happy.
Happy Anniversary, my darling Julian.