Friday, April 30, 2010

What We've Learned

Not everyone reads this blog because they like me. Some read it for ammunition. (Grab that ammunition! Load! Ready! Aim! Fire!) Why do I continue to put it out there? (Or phrased in the negative way: 'She just puts it all out there. Call me old fashioned, but I just don't think that's right!') So why do I? Because I am not a perfect person. Because I fall down on a diet, and get back up. Because sometimes marriages go through rough times. Because sometimes people get cancer and struggle to be positive. Or people face unemployment as best they can. Because going back to school is an option, even if you are old and gray-headed. Because life is beautiful, and it is hard, and it is funny, and it is rewarding, and it is a rut, and it is a journey. All of those things. Mostly, though, because people have been kind enough to share their stories with me, and I have been encouraged and because I think that I can be encouraging too.

Anyways, in the most recent struggle, Tim and I learned a great deal about ourselves and about our marriage, and about each other. Do not think that I am exaggerating. We teetered on the edge of separation for a couple weeks. What we learned about each other is that there is enough love there that even then what was most important to us was making sure that the other would be okay. We were very civil. We were kind. We listened to one another. We did not throw our hands up in the air and head off to seek the true love we deserved. We did not shame the other. We told very few people what was going on. The people we did tell prayed, because they love us both. They supported us. Tim and I struggled and it was an awful time. We're moving away from the abyss. We scared ourselves though. Wide-eyed, we are gasping for breath, shaken.

What we've learned though is this: that every marriage has a breaking point. It is our responsibility, each of us, to know what that breaking point is, and then to stay the heck away from it, to never go near it. We have learned that we actually have very good communication skills, both of us. We've learned that our love has a very solid foundation. I've learned that my cancer has profoundly changed Tim. Me. Our marriage. Mostly, though, what I've learned is that although my marriage is a good one, a strong one, I can never, ever allow myself to believe that divorce cannot happen to us. It could. We are both now aware that we are not invincible.

Things are settling down, but hard times are hard times. Working the bugs out in anything is a pain in the behind. However, we move tentatively back into each other's arms, and the music begins again. The rhythm is just a little bit different so our dancing is sort of awkward, but we hold each other more tightly, looking into each other's eyes for reassurance. We listen carefully, mindful of where we are stepping. Can we learn this dance? We're pretty sure that we can. We are giving it our very best efforts.

For anyone out there who is having a hard time, I hope this is encouraging. For the people looking for ammunition, there it is. I've put it all out there again. Fire away. You're not hitting anything anyway.


A Novel Woman said...

The reason I like your blog is because you put it all out there, yet you are never self-serving, nor are you a navel gazer. You're just honest, and thoughtful, and your posts make me think about my life and life in general. It's the mark of a good writer. Don't stop doing what you're doing. Your blog is one of my absolute favourites, and you inspire more people than you will ever know.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for being real, Debby. I am encouraged by you and I've learned from your points of view on many different levels. Sometimes, it's people who are envious of what another that will fire those critical "shots" at a target. As long as Tim is not offended by what you share with us then what right does anyone have to be critical. Again, I find inspiration on a regular basis, through your blogging. Please don't let the turkeys get you down.


Anonymous said...

I have learned and grown from your blog, keep it real and let me keep learning. Marriage is not easy, after 45 years for me there is still rough spots and we just work through them and keep talking things through. I am happy for you and Tim and though I do not know you I will pray for a deep lasting marriage.

Kelly said...

As long as you and those you write about are okay with what you post, why should it matter to anyone else? Personally, I appreciate your honesty here and feel that it's often just what someone else (myself included) needs to hear!

I still keep you in my prayers and hope that you'll keep doing this just like you always have. I love your blog!!

steviewren said...

Don't people have anything better to do than to criticize how someone else chooses to live their life? That's a rhetorical question because the answer is obvious.

I'm glad things are turning around for your two. Hang in there.

Brianna said...

You tell 'em, Mom! I tried to tell the person in question that this is what blogging is all about, and that it is your prerogative how much you put out there, but of course they didn't listen. So that's when I decided to be witchy, and I told them that they really shouldn't say anything, because if you didn't put everything out there, they wouldn't have anything to gossip about! ;) whatever, to each their own!

Redlefty said...

I'm pretty sure, last time I checked, that each of us has a choice of whether or not to read a blog. If I thought one was just totally inappropriate then I could stop reading it.

Eventually it's my responsibility whether or not I'm offended by you.

And just so you know, I'm not. :)

Anonymous said...

Why on earth would anyone be so malicious? Worse - why would they waste the time PLANNING to visit just for the sake of ammunition? They have nothing better to do with their time? Shame :(

Bill of Wasilla said...

That's what real artists - including writers - do. They put it all out there. One way or another, that's what they do. To those who do not understand - too bad for you.

Sometimes, though, I think it must be a terrible burden to be the loved one of an artist because, sooner or later, one way or another, that artist is going to expose you in his work, because the artist must expose him/herself and you are part of her/his self.

I hope for the best.

Scotty said...

Great post, Debby; I've always admired your honesty because it takes a certain kind of bravery to be that way.

Glad to hear you guys are working it out.

Jayne said...

I'm so happy to hear you and Tim are working it out and coming through this rough patch intact.
As for those gathering ammo - they must have a sad, miserable existence to take pleasure in tearing down what others create.

Debby said...

No. Tim and I are pretty matter of fact about things. I would never write something that would embarrass him. It is what it is, you know? Things go awry. We fall down. We get up. So does everyone else.

Hal Johnson said...

I think a couple very much in love can fall into the trap of thinking their relationship is bulletproof, and I have to kick myself on the butt now and then in that regard. Lyrics from a Hal Ketchum song stay with me: "Even love that is meant to be is a garden in need of tending. Even love that is for all time cannot promise a happy ending."

Pencil Writer said...

Before I read anything anyone else has written in comment, may I just say, I love this post. I agree. There is no marriage that is invincible. Marriage is a partnership. A partnership of two people. Two imperfect people. Marriage is work. Nothing should be taken for granted. Love is a powerful force that can mend broken fences and overcome a lot of trial and tribulation, but it take commitment and all those things you mentioned.

I think the hard times, where a split seems inevitable are really times when reassessment is crucial, because it's an opportunity for real growth in the marriage relationship.

I've had you in my prayers and will continue to do so. Marriage is a crowning experience of life. If it's kept alive and functional.

Thanks for your post, Debby. Bravo! And may the Lord ever bless the both of you and your union.

BUSH BABE said...

Oh Brianna - well done! Heh... bet that went down a treat!!! Forget it Deb, life is too short (and far too funny) to get caught up in the 'wonder what that person thinks' web.

Anonymous said...

Hi Deb, Loved your post. It was so real as are all your others. My love and best wishes to you and Tim and I think it is so great that you share your life - or some of it - with us. It is good to touch base with somebody real and know that most of us share the same things in many ways - and it probably helps so many in many and diverse ways.

What everybody else said as well, and onya Brianna! Whenever I am online I never miss checking you out Deb as you are so real.

Love Barb