This day, we never saw it coming, huh? Six years ago when we sat on my parents’ porch discussing our lives, we took for granted the control we had.
We had a lot of dreams in place. In the beginning, we were shy about discussing them. Then one day, you let it slip that you always wanted an “Andrew Jr.” and I shyly suggested one of the nerdy, bookish names I’ve always loved and you pretended to like it, well, because you liked me. We quickly progressed to more intense conversations and then rings came. Everyone warned us. They told us to take pills and savor our time alone. Looking back, they were well-intentioned but for the most part, we ignored them.
Today is the day we didn’t see coming. But yet, I think we have both seen it coming. For months now, I’ve cried over it like clockwork every 28 days. For all the foresight I had and the fears we had quietly admitted to, the doctor’s words hit me like a ton of bricks. And I’m still struggling to breathe.
They tell you it’s not a me or you issue, it’s an us issue. I can only assume that’s something doctors who are completely ignorant of what this feels like have come up with to keep people feeling united because the truth is, it’s the most isolating thing in the world. Our dreams are shattered and neither of us quite has the wherewithal to start picking up pieces.
What will that day look like? I’m not sure. Someone kept reminding me that this was for good but good continues to taste a lot like kale. I’ve never cared for kale. I hope and pray that someday, our dreams will be realized. That we will find our promised land and taste the sweetness of the milk and honey. Until that day, I pray for the strength to wake up each morning and love each other.
Love, my dear husband. The only gift I have to give you today is my love. We dreamed of different gifts, of creating life and beauty together but today, we are left with simply love and the hope of one day creating a beautiful life that is very different than we ever dreamed.
Until that day comes, in all of these icky, painful, in-betweens, can we promise to love? To look each other in our eyes everyday and remember the vows we made years ago in that church when our eyes sparkled and we didn’t know exactly what all the words we spoke entailed. The ones to love each other through life, and better, and worse, and sickness because our promise is still good. Our life is still good. Above all, our God is still good. And He has planted something different and deeper in our souls, a promise.
A promise that one day, these tears that overwhelm our hearts will be dried. A promised that we will look back and see the goodness He was weaving in our tail. And a promise that we will know just how wide and deep and high and wonderful His love is for us.
So for now, as we navigate these long days and painful months, can we make another promise? Or, more accurately, can we renew the promise we made on our wedding day now understanding the cost? Can we promise to love each other as we have been loved until the day we wake up and see the new creation?