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If you want to see me become a mushy mess, ask me about how the husband was while we cared for my dad after his stroke. Although I've fallen more in love with him as we've brought each of our babies home, I was surprised that I had the same experience of deeper feelings and greater appreciation when we brought my dad home. I watched some of his gifts truly shine during a time of great difficulty. He was compassionate and supportive to my dad, helping him with his at-home therapy, walking with him to ensure his safety, cleaning up messes that he wanted to shield me from. He was concerned about helping my dad maintain his dignity, and he never did anything to make him feel badly about needing help or living with us. He was my biggest fan with nightly pep talks that I could keep going and that we were making it through. It began to wear on him that same way it wore on me, but he was a voice of reason when things felt crazy.
When I took time to reflect throughout those months on the sacrifices he was making, they were nothing small. They were sacrifices that I think most husbands would say no to. Not only did he take on a great challenge with me, but he did so without complaint. He worked side by side with me and followed through on every commitment. He was my most trusted confidante through the most difficult period of my life. And he helped bring happiness and perspective to our home at a time when stress was always readily available. He helped remind me how to dance in the rain.
The way we grew closer during this period of our marriage leaves me with little room for doubt about our future. Trials can tear couples apart or bring them closer together. We've had a lot of practice at becoming closer through difficult times, and I'm so grateful that we've made that choice.
Selfishness is the root of so much marital strife, and is something that must constantly be re-evaluated because it's a natural trap to fall into. Neither one of us are perfect at being unselfish. But this trial was definitely a time when I can see the husband was completely selfless.
"Whither thou goes I will go; and where thou lodgest I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: Where thou diest, will I die." ( Ruth 1:16-17)