He Cuts My Mangos

I was driving to Amanda’s bachelorette party this weekend and the sun started beaming on my face.

I smiled. For a lot of reasons, really. The bright sun was certainly an added bonus to the day, but more importantly – I smiled because I’d only driven 5 miles down the road and I already missed my husband. I knew I’d have fun with the girls celebrating Amanda’s end of single hood (which also made me smile because Kyle & Amanda are true love story waiting to be published), but my body filled with happiness. I got that butterfly feeling in my stomach…this is the everyday kind of love feeling exploded in my body.

As always – I started thinking and driving. I reflected on the past few months. It’s been hard. On both of us.

I’ve been in a slump for a good 2-3 months. Some days I feel like Ashley and other days I just feel like I am going through the motions. I could truly pinpoint so many reasons- but at the end of the day – its because I spread myself too thin and care too much.

I started to think about what my dad told me a few weeks ago. “As far as happier, I would work on the mind and soul more and the body less…or more to the point..working on the body with the mind not right isn’t going to be a win. Sorry if that was confusing.”

I smiled knowing that my dad is such a wise man. He went on, “You are amazing. People love you lots…just look at how many people follow you on Facebook and interact with you.”

Then he asked me question that has stuck with me ever since, “Would you rather be with an imperfect Justin who was happy or a Justin who was working hard on an imperfection but wasn’t happy?”

I knew the answer instantly. My response was obvious, “Happy imperfection. Dad you are so right and that makes perfect sense. With a strong and healthy mind, absolutely anything is possible.”

“Yes, remember,” my dad wrote back,”You have to be happy on the journey. You can’t say ‘I will be happy when I get there.'”

I need to bring myself back to life- I need to get happy again on this journey through life… I started to think of Justin again.

He is my best friend.

My true love – who makes me smile when I am holding back tears.

Who tells me I am the most beautiful woman in the whole entire world even when I am feeling awful because I ate too much cheese & feel like a bloated whale.

Who rubs my feet when I don’t even ask.

Who looks at me and smiles when we are driving – for no other reason than to say “I love you” with his beautiful brown eyes.

Who let’s me go shopping when I don’t really need another summer dress, but ensure him that I’ll wear it to two weddings instead of one wedding this year.

Who looks at me playing with my nephews and tells me that I’ll be a great mom one day- even when I worry that I won’t know what to do.

Who cuts up my mangos when I don’t have the time or truly know how to do it.

****

I picked up the phone and called Justin.

“Hello babygirl!,” he said – probably thinking I forgot something.

“Babe – I just want you to know – that I love you so much. You mean so much to me and it means everything to me that you do for so much for me on a daily basis. You cut my mangos!”

I don’t know why – out of all the cute things I had just thought of- that cutting the mangos stuck out the most. Maybe because it was the last thought I had before I called him OR maybe its because cutting mangos is a true pain in the butt.

He laughed, “I love you too babygirl. And you mean so much to me.”

“Well, I just want you to know that – and I’m so lucky to have you…thank you for never giving up on me and always making me smile and happy.”

With tears streaming down my face as I type this blog post-  I write what I’ve heard him say many times before and always makes my heart melt, “I’ll never give up on you.”

***

We just celebrated our one year anniversary. We didn’t get dressed up and go to a fancy dinner. We didn’t spend hundreds of dollars on gifts. We just looked at it as another day to be thankful for each other. Another day to love each other with like crazy teenagers.

We went to lunch at my favorite place back home, Arnold’s Drive-In, and Lori (my former boss whom I love so dearly) bought our lunch. Then we out to Justin’s parents’ house to eat our year old cake- which let me tell you – was amazing after being frozen for a year.

Face off- check out Justin’s face. He knows it is coming…
Face off one year later.
And I got it right up his nose…
Don’t worry – he got revenge this year.

Today, I realized that even when I get low- I still have Justin by my side.

Getting low, low, low during our first dance.

Knowing that I’ll always have him by my side – brings the beaming sun right back to my face. He’ll never give up on me- so I can’t give up on me either. It also makes me feel super blessed to have such  a loving family and supportive group of friends (the family I get to pick) next to me.

I’m back! 🙂

Much love,
Ashley

2 thoughts on “He Cuts My Mangos

  1. Ashley Marie says:

    Aww Thank you so much, Tiff. Love and miss you tons! Thanks for reading and for your kind words as always – it means so much coming from someone I look up to so much! 🙂

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