Derek Hough Reflects on ‘Life’s Challenges and Joys’ After Wife Hayley Erbert’s Hospitalization

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Courtesy of Hayley Erbert/Instagram

Derek Hough and Hayley Erbert are reflecting on their year following her recent health scare.

“In the face of uncertainty, this year has been a canvas of reflection, painted with the colors of life’s challenges and joys,” Hough, 38, wrote via Instagram on Sunday, December 31, mentioning his new role as a judge on Dancing With the Stars and “paying homage to the legendary Len Goodman.”

In his post, Hough included a series of clips from each month of 2023 featuring some of his highs and lows from the past year. He added that the “pinnacle” of this year was “committing our love to one another in a breathtaking fairytale wedding, followed by an enchanting honeymoon in Italy.” (Hough and Erbert, 29, tied the knot in August after eight years together.)

“These experiences are treasures of gratitude, reminding us of life’s splendor and its fleeting nature,” he concluded. “Each day of our extraordinary journey teaches us to cherish every fleeting moment.”

Erbert, for her part, took to her own Instagram to share a message as the year came to a close.

“2023 was a year of the highest of highs and some life changing moments,” she captioned her post alongside a collection of videos. “I’m so grateful for the people in my life that have stood by me through it ALL. Cheers to a beautiful new year of new adventures, lots of love, and so much more life to live.”

The posts come nearly one month since Erbert suffered a cranial hematoma. Hough announced via Instagram on December 7 that his wife underwent an emergency craniectomy the night before, after a Washington, D.C., performance of his tour, A Symphony of Dance. “She is in stable condition,” he shared at the time.

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Since the initial news, Hough continuously shared updates on his wife’s health. He said on December 21 that Erbert underwent a second surgery to restore the part of her skull that had been removed weeks earlier and noted that she’s “on the path to a full recovery.”

“With immense relief, gratitude and overwhelming joy I’d like to share that Hayley’s cranioplasty surgery has been successfully completed as planned,” Hough wrote via Instagram with a picture of him sitting next to his wife’s hospital bed.

In another Instagram post, Hough gushed that Erbert has inspired him with “her will, her strength, and her resilience” since her scare. “She is now on the long road of recovery. Words cannot express how grateful and thankful we are for the support and love that you have given us,” he wrote on December 8. “The kindness that we’ve been shown in this incredibly unfathomable, and life-changing time is immeasurable. … Our hope is that as a family, we can somehow pay it forward.”

Erbert broke her silence on Christmas Day, posting a picture of her kissing Hough underneath a Christmas tree. “Cherishing the greatest gift of all. The precious gift of life and the love we share. Hold your loved ones close and treasure every moment,” she wrote.