Thursday, September 16, 2010

My Husband's Greatest Gift to Me (yes, even greater than my children!)

Two years two months ago, my husband walked away from a blossoming career on the beautiful island of Oahu.  I am now almost certain the choice to do so has cost him immeasurably more than we were able to foresee.
I remember standing in my breezy kitchen, his arms around me, snap-shots of our life in Hawaii passing through my mind.  I knew with out a doubt: whatever was rumbling inside me was going to cause it all to fall apart.   So lovely and tropical on the outside, torrential storm brewing on the inside.
Just three months later, I confessed my desire to move back to the NW. . . and despite what he had told me for the previous year, he confessed his desire to do nothing of the sort.  Honestly, I was not angry.  I had spent all my anger on myself, for days feeling shameful for the incongruency in my heart.  I fought between the desire to take care of myself (a new thing) and the desire to do what I had previously determined as best.  Could I really take the easier, most likely road to recovery?  There was a great rush of freedom in just the thought.   The new understanding, that if my best chance at recovery includes leaving the Islands, this was the road I could shamelessly confess as my preference.   Weather or not I would take the way out was of little import at this time. It was a big moment for me.  I  had known my mind and made a step toward becoming an adult person!   The conclusion came with so much brooding anger and shame and self-loathing. There was an immediate calm after its admission, even only to myself!  Really this seemed to be what mattered. I didn't feel an urgency to convince my husband.  I simply said, "I believe my best chance of recovery is where I was born and raised." I was no longer ashamed of wanting the best!
I left HI with the children for summer break.  My husband joined us a week or so later.  While we were apart he had decided we would not return to the Islands at the end of summer.  I was scared at first, "Can I really do as I like with my own life?" 
Quickly, I began to recover my health, soothed as I was, by the regularity of life where I grew up. I believe my return to the town of my accident has had a major impact upon my recovery.  I felt as if mere weeks had past since the accident.  In truth? Fifteen years!But I began to mourn and grieve, learning along the way how to comfort myself.
These past two years have been packed full of weeping, confusion, family conflict, anger, resentment and darkness.  But these last two months have been full of light, understanding, hope and serenity.  And all the while my patient husband has put his dreams on hold.  What can I say to him?  Neither of us seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, in regards to our future.  The economy and my unhealth have us a bit stuck. Direction? Career? Residence? Stability?  These are the questions with which we are left.
I know less about my future, more about my past, and finally, most about myself.
Thank you, sweet husband, for letting me go back in time, filling up the gaps at home while I was busy re-doing 16, 17, 18, 19, and 20, putting yourself aside . . . for me, a girl who had not yet found herself amongst all the tears and tragedy, college and friends, ministry and babies.
You have my trust, my respect, and my HEART. I don't know where we're going, when or if we're going to go. But I know you'll  be standing by me and I just want you to know: I am ready to go.