Epilogue for Dying To Heal
I took a course in Hallelujah, and I took enough drugs to kill me ten times over. I've had my run-ins with the law and a love affair with the bottle that almost destroyed me more than once.
I've most definitely had more than my fair share of wrong turns and bad choices.
Too often I felt tapped out, like I was hopelessly broken and couldn't get fixed. There were pieces of me that could have cared less as to whether I lived or died.
Now matter how many drugs or how much liquor I put into my system, the high was never high enough, the escape was never far enough away. Nothing I did seemed to light my fuse, as I stumbled through life.
My reckless life was one chaotic episode after the other, and I was, without a doubt, on a path that would have only ended in disaster. . . until an angel walked into my life - pulling me from the devil and over into her heaven.
I find it so ironic how it was I that pulled Bella from death, but it was her that saved me.
True love like I had never known when I looked into that woman's eyes.
What she and I share is so much deeper than anything I had ever imagined. We both have had our share of heartache and twists and turns throughout this life, and who knows - maybe that's what connects us or the ties that bind us?
When I saw Bella's body dangling from that bridge, I knew that I had to save her in spite of her pleas to let go, for there was something deep down inside of me, changing, shifting.
I can't let her go - over and over in my head as I held onto her with all of my might and she struggled to free herself.
As crazy as that moment on the bridge was, I somehow knew that everything was gonna be okay; for the both of us. I held her shivering body so close to mine and when I told her that everything was gonna be okay, my words calmed her; they calmed me.
It's an absolutely extraordinary thing, how with a blink of an eye, everything in your world changes. When that moment arrives that you just somehow know that everything's gonna truly be alright.
Through all the good and all of the bad, Bella sees the real me and loves me like no one else can.
Our scars are open, visible for the other to see and yet we see past those scars and straight to the other's heart - it's truly a remarkable thing.
It's because of Bella I now know that God does, in fact, send people into our lives, in perfect timing and with a purpose. For every time she touches me, time stops, she saves me, over and over. She accepts me, understands me and fills my life with so much joy, it's almost more than I can bear.
When I look at where I was and where I am now, I know that I am one blessed man that will never again take one single second in life for granted.
Love never gives up, it never loses faith, it's always hopeful and endures through every circumstance. I quote that in my mind often, from the good book, for that is exactly the kind of love that Bella gives me, and every day, I fall in love with her all over again.
I used to call Bella my angel, but even the most divine angel could never compare to the way my wife saves me every minute of every day.
Loving Bella was as easy as breathing, however, getting her to completely let go of all her fear and just trust was another story. But somewhere along the way, she did.
To say that she isn't occasionally haunted by her past would be false, but every day, she overcomes it a little more, and she finally found peace with her mother and forgave her.
On the fifteenth day of May, Bella and I became husband and wife, and it was on that very day, I took my last drink of alcohol.
. . .
My Dearest Bella,
May we never forget what is worth remembering or remember what is best forgotten.
When we look back over the years, may we only remember those things that warmed our hearts or brought smiles to our faces.
Thank you my beloved wife for five wonderful years of absolute happiness.
I stood and watched as tears filled her big brown eyes while reading the card that she pulled from the bouquet of flowers that I had just handed her.
Every anniversary, I had made it a habit of giving Bella wild flowers, they are gorgeous, colorful and spontaneous.
"Thank you," she whispered, enclosing the space between us as she gently kissed my lips.
"You're welcome," I replied before she walked to the side table in the foyer and slowly removed something small from the drawer.
Holding it in her hand, she asked me to hold out mine and when I did, she placed a dried pea into my hand and smiled.
Cocking a brow, I looked at her confused.
"That's about how big your baby is right now." She brightly smiled, placing her trembling hand over mine. "I'm pregnant."
Pregnancy was something that Bella and I rarely discussed, for it always brought her to tears in remembering Colton, and she had lost all hope after the doctor had told her that her chances of her ever becoming pregnant again were slim to none.
Pregnancy announcements were always bittersweet for us. Everyone around us had kids, Rose and Emmett and Alice and Jasper. Even Angela and her new husband Ben were expecting.
It was something that I showed no outward emotion about, because I wanted to be strong for Bella.
Truth was, deep down inside, I wanted kids. I wanted them badly, but I would have hidden that fact forever if it meant sparing Bella's feelings. She is, no doubt, one of the toughest women that I know, but even so, there was nothing I wouldn't do to protect her. And besides, I had made my mind up a long time ago, if Bella couldn't have children, then I couldn't have children.
"H-how? When?" I was at a loss for words as I gazed into her beaming eyes.
"This morning, after you left for work, I woke up sick for the third day in a row, so I finally took Angela's advice and went to see the doctor. When I tested negative for the flu, the doctor asked me if I wanted to take a pregnancy test. At first, I declined, but something urged me to take the test just to be sure, and so I did... and it was positive."
"We're having a baby?" I had to touch her stomach, although there were no visible signs... yet.
"Yes, we're having a baby," she replied.
"I swear to God, Bella, I will be the best father in the world to this kid." I pulled her close and kissed her hard. "I'll be there for you through it all. If you want ice cream at three a.m, I will drive all night if I have to. If you wanna take birthing or parenting classes, we'll take them all. I'll love you and I'll stand by you even when you're a hormonal mess."
"Okay, okay. I believe you." She looked up at me with eyes so full of joy, it overwhelmed my heart to see her so happy.
"I'm gonna take such good care of you, you'll be begging me to leave you alone."
"Never." She smiled. "And besides, you already take good care of me."
That was my plan all along, to take care of her for the rest of my life.
"How far along?"
"The doctor guessed somewhere around six weeks, but we find out for sure, next week."
"I can't wait."
"Me either... when should we start telling people?"
"I don't know, when do you want to tell them?"
"Maybe later on, when we know for sure that everything is okay?"
"Everything will be fine. This little guy right here." I placed my hand on her tummy. "Is only one of the many good things that will happen to us in this life."
After a completely normal and healthy pregnancy and exactly thirty-two weeks from the day of our fifth wedding anniversary, Bella delivered our son, Charles Edward Cullen aka Little Charlie.
He was perfect, ten little fingers, ten little toes, his mother's nose and stubborn streak and my eyes and crazy hair. A perfect blend of each of us in one little tiny being.
I'll never forget the first time I laid eyes on my son, he was so small and screaming to the top of his lungs. After the nurse cleaned him, wrapped him in a blanket and placed him on Bella's chest, he immediately calmed. I'll never fully be able to explain how much love I felt when I saw that wild hair peeking out of that blue blanket as my wife held him in her arms.
"Do you wanna hold your son?" Bella held him out to me and although I had little to no experience at all with babies, I took him in my arms and I had never in my entire life felt so complete.
How could something so small bring so much joy to a grown man's heart?
"Welcome to the world, Little Charlie." I kissed his tiny head as he slightly squirmed in my hands. "I promise you that I will try to be the best daddy in the whole wide world, and I kinda know that I can fulfill this promise, because the best way to show you how much I love you, is by showing you how much I love your mother... and that, my dear son, I already do, as much as my own life."
And Dying To Heal has officially ended.
I am a huge sucker for HEAs... and I hope you guys enjoyed getting a lil' input from Edward.
Thank you guys so much for making this story all the more pleasurable to write. Your kind words and words of encouragement has blessed my heart beyond measure and made this entire experience all the more worthy, so thank you a thousand times over!
I try to add a few songs that inspires me to write, so some of the songs used for Dying To Heal:
1. Blue October - Angels in Everything
2. Rascal Flatts - Why
3. Unhindered - Selah
4. P!nk - Nobody Knows
5. Grizzly Bear - Slow Life
6. Lifehouse - Everything
7. Evanescence - Bring Me Back To Life
8. Blue October - Sound Of Pulling Heaven Down
9. Seether (ft Amy Lee) - Broken
10. Aerosmith - We All Fall Down
11. Aerosmith - Amazing
12. P!nk (ft Nate Ruess) - Just Give Me A Reason
Until The Next Story,