Reed and I talked for a long time about our situation. The talk was much-needed and I have a hunch that we may have saved ourselves thousands of dollars in counseling. People aren’t lying when they stress the importance of keeping up communication in a marriage. I’ll blame myself in not first, going to my husband with something like, Hey Honey, I feel like you are physically neglecting me. And, in all fairness to my husband, how dare I expect things to automatically go back to how they once were, before the accident.
Truth be told, just like with everything else that we’ve had to overcome in our marriage – before, during and after Reed’s accident – simply bringing up the problem in conversation is a great place to start!
While talking with each other, it was brought up to my attention that I wasn’t fully understanding the situation. Now, I feel it was wrong of me to place most of the blame on Reed’s accident as the reason for our lack of connection. A lot has happened in a short amount of time. All in a matter of a few months, we had a scare with Alex’s health, stopped an adoption, dealt with Reed’s car accident, and the most recent... well, the most recent issue deserves its own blog post. Anyway, there is bound to be some stress.
In all honesty, I didn’t grieve any of these events fairly. I just pushed through to whatever needed done. The scare of Alex possibly needing spinal surgery… having to stop an adoption that was so close to being complete… almost losing my husband in a car accident… all of these events I never properly processed. I became overwhelmed and stressed. Then, all of a sudden I found myself unwilling to play my role in my family. I started letting things slip more than usual – the dishes, laundry, housework… I had an insatiable need for sleep. All I wanted to do was sleep, instead of addressing my responsibilities. Reed picked up the slack a lot before returning to work full time. Once my dear husband did return to work, he would come home to find no laundry had been done. However, he needed a clean shirt for the next day so he would do the laundry, without complaint. Or, no dishes had been done, but guess what, we no longer have any clean silverware to eat with, so he would do the dishes, without complaint. Out of necessity, because he has a servant heart, he would spend his time picking up my slack. He didn’t have the time to think about ways to show affection toward me. He was too busy trying to keep our household going. He was too busy trying to catch up with his work, after missing a few months. He was overwhelmed with work and household responsibilities and I was overwhelmed with emotions that I still hadn’t processed.
This chaos all led to my feelings of neglect. When really, Reed wasn’t neglecting me, he was trying to serve me; trying to keep things going in our home. Reed was leading our home by acting in the best interest of our family. He kept our household going by picking up my slack, without complaint. He just kept serving and serving. And once I brought up my feelings to him, he talked through everything with love and kindness. He never placed blame, instead, he helped me to see what the issues were. Reed apologized for making me feel neglected and promised to make it better.
Through my own reflection and prayer, it didn’t take long for me to see that Reed isn’t responsible for making things better nor my sense of peace! If I focus on my blessings, keep up my responsibilities, and lay my suffering at feet of Christ, I will find peace. The peace I have been desiring all along. The peace that comes only through my surrender to Christ.
I urge you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God, your spiritual worship. Do not conform yourselves to this age but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and pleasing and perfect.
~ Romans 12:1-2