In a heartbeat, by Tonia Marie Houston

To Nikki –

Hey Babe, I am so damn proud of you. You are one of the strongest people I know! You don’t have to worry. I will be by your side 100% and always. I love you with my whole heart and more.

You have a very loving family. YOU GOT TO GET BETTER. If I could take your place, I would do it in a heartbeat. I really just want you to know no matter what happens or what is done I will be with you FOREVER. I love you so much.

Love, Matthew

My brother-in-law wrote this note in a hospital, for my sister, who lay in a coma after a car accident. He spent his New Year’s thinking of her, praying for her, and loving her.

They met, through another sister of ours, that summer. By early August, they knew they were in love. I remember how he made my kid sister shine. As we all held each other up that long winter, I knew she would make it, that his love would pull her through.

It’s not often that I get to be right, but this time was one of them.

She shattered her T12 and L1 vertebrae, and is wheelchair bound, but we brought her home in April of that year.

Matt kept his promise – his love never failed her.

I had a long conversation with my sister, Nichole Lynn Wilson, about their love, and their life today. When she read aloud this note, she had tears in her voice. Then, she told me about the night he proposed.

He asked, “We have fun, right?”

They talked about all the things they had done together, everything they had together.

“I don’t know what the hell I’m doing,” He told her in the spirit of romance, and dropped to one knee and asked her to be his wife.

After a few moments of dumbfounded silence, and a plea from Matt for a response, my amazing sister said, “Yes.”

They married September 20, 2008.

Not a year into their marriage, the couple surmounted another obstacle. Matt went into the hospital April 27, 2009 for a routine eye surgery. He is a Type 1 Diabetic, and complications during the anesthesiology pushed fluid into his lungs. My sister sat by his bed, tending the same vigil he had just a few short years before.

Love and angels prevail. He was released June 30th.

Happily ever after, according to my sister, is long drives, take-out, and watching movies with their Chihuahua, Abby, and Scottish Terrier, Mac, It’s not the end of a story, but a chapter. A heartbeat.

Nikki and Matt

As we ring in the new year, and reflect on loves and losses of the past years, believe in this much:

“Love never fails.”

~1 Corinthians 13

Tonia Marie Houston

Tonia Marie is a mother, writer, poet, and blogger who procrastinates in her spare time. Chocolate is her kryptonite. Tonia is working on a YA ghost story, and exploring the beautiful and bumpy terrain of self-publishing vs. the traditional market.

This story was originally posted at Tonia Marie’s blog in December, 2011, here. See Tonia Marie’s wonderful blog PassionFind. You can see Tonia Marie on Facebook and follow her on Twitter.


Filed under Guest Writers & Bloggers, Special Events

14 responses to “In a heartbeat, by Tonia Marie Houston

  1. How wonderful! What a heart-warming tribute. Thank you for sharing this, Tonia.

  2. I absolutely love this and thank you so much for passing on this inspirational story, Tonia, I do believe that love never fails, and yet seeing (or reading) it in action is not necessarily a common thing. With the big storms they have already endured, it is my prayer that Nikki & Matt see abundant clear skies for a long long time into their future.

  3. What a precious, inspiring glimpse into the power of love. Yes, love never fails. And real life romance out-does fictional fairy tales again!

  4. Thank you for sharing such a heartwarming story about the strength of love!

  5. This is so lovely and heart-warming. *smiling*

  6. Beautiful post by a beautiful woman. Your writing speaks to my heart and brings tear to my eyes. Thank you for sharing this wonderful tribute to true love.

  7. Thank you, all. I’m blessed they allowed me to share their story. Yes, Beth, real life love outshines any fairytale. Matt is now undergoing dialyses and is on the donor list for a kidney and pancreas. Please keep them in your hearts and prayers. Your kind words mean a great deal.

  8. Pingback: Love Means Sharing « Passionfind with Tonia Marie Houston

  9. Lovely post…I’m so glad it had a happy ending!

  10. Thank you all for visiting. Isn’t it great when we hear a story like this? It’s better than any romance novel. TM – best wishes and prayers coming Matt’s way!

  11. Every time I read this story, it makes my heart melt. What a wonderful tribute to two wonderful people. This is what real love is all about. Thank you for sharing, Tonia. Will keep Matt and your sister in my thoughts and prayers.

  12. Elizabeth Cottrell

    This is inspiring…their story gives a whole new dimension to “for better or for worse.”

    I love that you “procrastinate in your spare time.” …a woman after my own heart!

  13. This is such a beautiful story. Thank you and your sister for sharing it. It’s this kind of love that keeps me writing and gives me hope.

  14. Pingback: Karen’s Blog Survey Results | Karen S. Elliott's Blog

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