This story of our marriage has two parts. The first part I am ashamed of. Now that I am living the second part, I look back with deep regret at the past.
RLB worked hard to become a salesman. He waited tables at night and on Saturdays and beat the streets Monday through Friday. For months he went out day after day without a sale. He learned, and he learned well the art of salesmanship. This led to a business opportunity with a partner that would look as if life was set for him. Their business was wildly successful, fast. In exchange for his being twenty percent owner in the company, RLB took a salary instead of the commission they would pay other salespeople. He was compensated well, but it was not even close to what he earned.
With the swipe of a pen and heaps of deception, his partner brought the business down, pillaged what remained from unsuspecting clients, screwed the venders, and kept the spoils. RLB lost a quarter of a million dollars.
We've been through hard times before. We'll get through this one. And on I blindly went, ignoring the devastation that took place inside my husband. The loss was substantial. His time, his work, his financial investment, the betrayal of a friend and a wife who lacked empathy all sat heavily on his heart. And, every last expectation of what a husband is supposed to do remained his burden.
He slept a lot. I judged him, a lot. Why won't he get up? Why won't he go work? Aren't the kids and I important to him? How are we going to get by? And I fretted and worried and wrung my hands. Even worse, I had friends to entertain my whining and disrespect.
Ladies, do not keep people in your life who will allow you to talk negatively about your husband. They are poison. They revel in your gossip. They are not friends being a shoulder to cry on, they are purposely there to breed contention and strife. The enemy's most wicked tool to separate the flesh that has become one. Get rid of them.
All of this negative talk and judgment affected my attraction to him and our sex life suffered. Now more than ever, I am convinced that attraction to your husband is one of the many blessings of obedience.
I long to go back to speak wise counsel to my younger self. To tell her what her husband desperately needs. To let her know that not an ounce of worry, nagging, strife, or berating will add a bit of help to the situation. That she is sabotaging all that God can do. I want to tell her to shut up. Shut her mouth, hit her knees and pray. And then submit. Give him all the respect God has commanded her to give so that God can heal and prepare her husband for the journey ahead.
RLB wins. We never went without. Despite my wicked tongue, rebellion, and abdication of my role as his help meet, he went out and sold. He worked for a horrible boss for a time, then moved on to better employment, still in sales. He kept on providing. And then, while I was away for a weekend, he had peace. It was then he decided to enlist in the Army.
The second part of this story is the current situation we are in. RLB suffered a back injury last April and has had very limited mobility since. His healing has been very slow and his continued commission in the Army is uncertain. He'll be facing a medical evaluation board soon from the recommendation of his physicians.
One month after the injury, a hail storm swept though our area and caused $35,000 worth of damage to our property and vehicles. The work is still not complete but we do as much as we can when we can. We've had contractors work on the big jobs but are slowly doing the repairs ourselves on the rest. Meanwhile I drive him everywhere he needs to go, I open doors for him, and there have been times I've had to tie his shoes.
For ten months I have done whatever has been in my power to give RLB rest. I do not allow thoughts of disrespect to enter my heart. I pray endlessly for my husband and his healing. I do what I can to stop my children from expressing unhappiness. No, we can't go on a vacation. No, we can't drive fifteen hours to visit extended family. No, we can't go to the amusement park. No, we don't know if we'll be moving back home. No, we don't know what the future holds. Get over it. And do not disrupt the harmony and peace of our home that your father needs to recover.
I remember clearly the wife I was the last time my husband was in need and I absolutely refuse to be her again. My eyes are wide open to the plans of the enemy. I guard my heart, my association... everything. This time I will win. There is no complaining or fret or worry. I make no time for useless relationships. I certainly have no time for poisonous individuals who would consider a negative word about my husband.
There is so much blessing on this side of obedience. My attraction to my husband is greater than it has ever been. Our sex life is better than it has ever been. My longing for him and pleasure in his company is endless.
I am very blessed with a very normal man. As I come to understand the hearts of men, I can see clearly the commonalities among them. I say this so you know, so you can not say, "but SD, our situation is different." Come to know your husband and other men. Truly see their hearts. Their loyalty and long suffering will astound you. Their will to achieve, to overcome, to persevere will shut your ever discontented mouth. That which I've come to know men do for their brides and their babies has so convicted my heart of their worth. Honor that. For you will be in awe of the blessings in store for you. No matter what storms arise in your marriage, hold tight to God's commands. Let them be your first priority. Do not fear. Do not falter. Do not lose heart.
And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. - Galatians 6:9
Sunshine Mary at The Woman and the Dragon - What to do when your husband is injured or ill
Morticia at Morticia's Musings - Bringing Sexy Back
Songtwoeleven at The Lady I Can’t Explain - Supporting your husband through extended unemployment