Sorry I haven’t written in a while, things are real crazy right now with us. We have so much going on with school, state testing, field trips, etc. But I am back to write a little bit more…
I believe when I last wrote I talked about Robert and I getting back into the swing of things after he scared me half to death! By the way, I forgot to mention how wonderful our neighbors were to us during his hospital stay and after. They were always checking up on us. It was like we were an extension of their family! Our neighbors helped us appreciate living in a small community!
Once Robert returned to work and started to get back into the swing of things I began to notice he started to become unhappy. I had not seen this part of my husband before, here the man which had been cheering me up the past few months now had to be cheered up (he may have promised to wear a Gator shirt for me to cheer me up BUT I just could not bring myself to promise to wear a Georgia shirt to cheer him up!) I knew I had to help figure out what was going on with my happy, witty, fun loving husband.
In all of the battles we had faced up to this point in our very short marriage the one thing which helped make us stronger was our candidness and our daily conversations. Well, it didn’t take long for me to find out Robert was very unhappy with his job! As he began to talk about how he was being treated since he returned from his sick leave I could hear how upset he was. Listening to my husband broke my heart, made me angry and allowed me to see he was being bullied in his job by his co-workers. My husband’s co-workers were doing all they could to squeeze him out of his job and it was working. Proof of this came one afternoon in October when my husband beat me home after work, which was very unusual being he worked until 5:00 and I worked until 4:00. It took me only a few minutes to figure out what was going on, my husband opened up and we talked about how horrible his day had been and how he had only until the following Friday to work with the University. For a moment I was confused, then I felt a wave of relief cover me all the while I was telling my husband that not working there was probably the best thing for him and we would be okay. I knew we together would be able to find him a job and he would see working in the state of Florida would and could be a wonderful experience. I couldn’t believe I had told this man I loved so much when we got married life would be soooo wonderful with both of us working and now he was faced with what he had feared prior to us getting married. I felt like I had let him down by helping him find a job which was so horrible. I knew I had to help him find the perfect job. Where would we begin? What type of job would be find?
The next few weeks would prove to be a challenge for Robert at work, but we kept counting down until he was free from this horrible environment – less stress was on it’s way for Robert or was it?? I didn’t know at that moment how much Robert would struggle with being unemployed, how much I would struggle with him being unemployed. What would happen? What would come next? How long could be survive on one income? All of these were questions which crowded my mind and only later did I discover there were on Robert’s mind also. All in all neither one of us ever figured this job loss would lead us to where we are today… HOMELESS (my mom will tell you we are not homeless but by definition we are)!!
**Robert sporting his Gator gear!!**
Robert and I both learned from the health scare we experienced in July just how precious life and love was! We each embraced this experience over the next few days. I can remember Robert’s first night back home, I didn’t sleep a wink, I simply lay in bed watching him sleep. I was number one worried about Robert still and number two I was relieved to have him back home with me. It took Robert roughly another week to gain enough strength to return to work. We took that week of recovering to embrace the gift of life God had given us and to catch up on the sleep that we had missed while Robert was in the hospital.
When Robert returned to work he still was regaining strength. When he came home every evening for the next little bit I could tell he was exhausted from trying to get back in the groove. I felt bad for him, here I had been at home — bored to pieces mind you (I decided over the summer I could not be a stay at home wife. Staying home all the time and not going drove me crazzzzzy! Robert will tell you he had to talk me up every morning and every night.) and he was at work trying to earn a living for us to keep us in our nice home and to keep food on our table while he was still not 100%.
As Robert’s health improved you would have thought the job would have become easier for him, right? Well, the job became easier but the work environment didn’t become easier. Robert being a Christian, leading a Christ like life and being an example of Christ in the work place did not bode will with him in the eyes of many of his co-workers. My husband, the spiritual leader of my house and my friend was being treated unfairly at work by so many people to the point he didn’t enjoy going anymore. Then he would come home to his new wife who struggled with staying home this summer due to the money situation we faced after our wedding, moving into a new house and Robert being out of work because of his illness. He was being struck at each angle it seemed like. He would come home and try to cheer me up, he even promised to cheer on the Gators and wear a Gator shirt during football season if I would just cheer up some, now that is love my friends! He didn’t want me to worry about him and his dislike of his job so he would cover up his feeling about his work and try and tell me only the crazy stories which would bring out the laughter. This routine would go on for much of the summer. I knew that once I started back to school I would not be bored any longer but I had to wait until my classroom was cleaned and ready for me to get into – I wondered if August was ever going to get here… I believe Robert thought the same thing!
I really was hoping to write every day but, with state testing right around the corner I find myself exhausted at night. Last night was one of those nights, I was so tired after a day full of last minute prepping my students for state test I couldn’t find the mental and physical energy to type. Here I am tonight I will try and get on with Robert’s hospital stay from my cliff hanger the other night!
Leaving Robert laying in the hospital hooked up to machines and IV’s scared me beyond compare. I wanted to stay by his side 24/7 but I was forced to leave by the doctors and nurses because in ICU they only had visiting hours during certain hours each day. I knew I was leaving Robert in hands of professionals but still I was worried that when I left what would I come back to but I also knew deep down I would use the next few hours to cry to God.
Cry to God I did!! My drive home to rest up for a moment, get a change of clothes and make sure I had all the lights and appliances turned off was where my cry began. My cry was out of fear. I was allowing my fear of my husband being sick come to life. I prayed asking God to restore his health, make him stronger and allow the doctors to find out exactly what was wrong with him. Of course, with Robert being in the hospital and the word getting out I also had to answer phone calls during my 20 minute drive home for those calls I had to try and sound all together, I really didn’t want anyone to worry! By the time I got home I was ready to let out all my frustrations and worries/fears. I can to this day (8 months later) remember word for word what I cried out to God. I couldn’t believe He would allow Robert to come into my life only to take him away from me. I asked God what we had done wrong to allow us to go through this situation at this moment, after only being married a short time. I even questioned if God remembered what He had promised me? Being BOLD, I reminded God (Of all things to do, who was I to remind God?) of His promise to bring Robert into my life, allow us to minister together in music, go into the mission field together and to allow us to have Ella Rose and Liam Nathaniel!! I remember asking why God would have me wait SO many years to find Robert, and to get marry to the man of my dreams ONLY to do this ! At the same time I was angry and hurt I also was begging God not to take Robert from me. I even at one time ask God to allow me to change places with my husband. Ultimately in my conversation with God I prayed he would allow Robert to come home to me! ( I know my prayer / conversation with God will take many, especially my husband by surprise – it has taken many months to be strong enough to allow this conversation to come to the surface and expose how weak I was during this scary time of my life.)
The next week Robert grew stronger, family and friends from Georgia and Florida visited, and most importantly all the test the doctors ran came back clear. I knew God had answered my prayers even if I was being a brat praying the way I was! My husband was getting better and I had God to thank for it. I knew we had a long way to go because Robert was weak and had to rebuild his strength to get back to 100%, but we could deal with this journey. Robert and I knew we could handle all things. I think Robert learned in his hospital stay that I was strong enough to help him recover, especially after I had it in with one of his doctors (let’s just say that wasn’t my best moment). Together Robert and I discovered in our first month of marriage that with God we could face our fears even if it was the fear of our soul mate being taken from us.