The other night Tim and I celebrated 6 years of marriage and thankfully this celebration turned out better. Last year, while the recent acknowledgment that my disease was indeed progressing was hard enough for me to deal with, it also forced Tim to think about what would happen if someday I really was not here for him and our family. It also meant uncountable numbers of appointments which in turn also meant more hospital bills.
Last year on our anniversary the build up over the last few months had gotten too much for either one of us to bare so we reached out to our pastor as we knew if our relationship was going to survive, we needed to take action. This made such a huge impact on Tim and me as we were both able to get things out on the table in regard to all of the stress that had come crashing down on us. The truth is as stressful as those few months were, we would soon find out that was only the beginning of what would be another tough year to come.
Tim and I were able to change how we handle the stress and daily grind of our life, not to mention being able to come to terms with my illness because we were finally able to acknowledge that God is in control, not us. Yet, shortly after, Tim lost his contract with the farmer who was keeping our cattle operation running full and consistent, therefore taking away our major source of income. This led to Tim having to get a fulltime, third shift job, on top of running our cattle operation with a new supplier although only running our farm at half of what he normally had been running it. Tim now is working the hardest he ever has only to make half of what he made when the operation was originally running full speed. I hate this because he averages 3 hours of sleep….on a good day. I often think “here we are worried about my health and he’s the one killing himself with so much work on such little sleep”.
But of course the struggles couldn’t end there. I have had new symptoms of my disease flare up which again is leaving the doctors in question as to what to do with me. I have been running tests to determine my likelihood of having a stroke, a heart attack and congestive heart failure. I also have extreme pain and numbness in my right leg so of course this means me going from doctor to doctor trying to figure out the root of this problem as well. I have been dealing with this pain for over 5 months. I have tried physical therapy and done test after test only for them to once again go back to thinking this problem is due to my vascular system being so messed up. This week will bring yet more testing and an MRA to determine the results…at least I hope so.
Looking back I do really feel that if Tim and I wouldn’t have reached out for help when we did that the year would have killed our marriage. I believe that the overwhelming stress of the cattle operation shutting down for a short period, Tim working all day and all night,as well as all of these new health symptoms, would have sucked up our hope and we would have been swallowed by the misery that seems to fill our lives. And yes misery is a strong word, but an honest word of how we had both felt at times.
We are now finally able to recognize that while we think things may be falling apart, it is actually going to lead to something even better so we are able to say “ok God we might not know what You are doing but we trust You”. Tim and I are amazing together but that one argument made us take some steps that we probably wouldn’t have attempted, which has led us so much closer to God, as well as finding a new sense of peace that everything is going to be okay when we are faced with new struggles.
I am just happy to say that I have an amazing husband who has supported me and loved me when I am sick, has encouraged and lifted me up when I feel like a worthless wife who just contributes medical expenses or can’t even cook dinner some nights due to such severe fatigue but especially when I take my frustrations out on him, he is able to forgive me. Don’t get me wrong though, there are still times when Tim doesn’t fully understand my illness and basically just tells me to “buck up” so that’s when I want to punch him but I refrain from doing so…hey we’re not perfect 🙂
Overall we have come a long way and while I still hate my disease I can see how God has used it to shape me in to the person I am today. My relationship with God today is stronger than it ever has been. I can also see what a better man Tim has become and the transformation God has done on him is amazing. God is good and His love for us is even greater.
Happy 6 years to my amazing husband and looking forward to seeing what God has in store for us this year. Well this blog should make up for me not getting him a gift 🙂