Tuesday, October 23, 2012

You never know how strong you are

A favorite saying of mine!
It is right! You never know how strong you are......
Until it is the only choice that
 you have.

I never wanted to be the strong one in the family.

I will admit that I have always wanted to be taken care of.
Even though I grew up in a generation where women burned their bras.
A generation where women fought for equal rights.
A generation where women expected equal pay.
A generation where women WANTED to work outside the home.

I wanted to be TAKEN care of.

My husband always did that.
He paid the bills.
(Hell, I didn't even know what the bills were)
And I didn't want to know.
He shopped at the grocery store.
I hated grocery shopping and he liked it.
So he shopped.
We shared cooking. 
We shared the cleaning.
I helped mow the grass.
He helped wash the dishes.
It worked for us and it was wonderful.
When our boys were growing up, I worked at night and he worked in the day.
The boys always had one of us with them.
No babysitters.
Always a parent at school functions or sporting events.
It worked for us.
And it was wonderful.

He made his own doctors appointments and bought his own medication.
I did mine.
He bought his own socks and underwear. His own shirts and jeans.
I bought mine.
He put gas in his vehicle and mine too.
He decided where we were going on vacation and he planned the trip.
And I enjoyed every vacation we ever went on.

When the grand kids came to live with us, (which by the way was his idea) we still shared
all the chores. I worked in the evenings and he was there with them.
He cooked their dinner.
He helped with their homework.
He tucked them in at night and listened to their prayers.

He was STRONG.
And I liked it that way.

And then came that fateful Friday Night of September one year ago.
And I had to be STRONG.
I had to make the decisions.
I had to pay the bills and do the grocery shopping.
And decide what we were going to do when the furnace quit running.
And who to call and how to pay.
I had to put gas in my own car. And check the oil. And learn how to put air in my tires.
I sold his truck and hoped that I made the right decision.
I make his doctors appointments and go along with him.
I tell the doctor how he is and what he needs.
I buy his medications and I administer them.
I help him out of his chair.
I help him out of bed.
I help him with his breakfast, and his lunch, and his dinner.
I help him get dressed in the mornings and undressed at bedtime.
I help him brush his teeth.
I help him shave.
I put on his shoes and I take them off.
I keep my hand on his elbow as he walks through the house.
I lay awake at night and worry...............'how long can I do this?"

But I am STRONG.

Because I have no other choice.


  1. Paula, awhile back you entered my Miracle grow sample Giveaway. the company never sent the sample like they were supposed to. I have finally got in contact with the right person to get it mailed out to my winner and That would be you. If you can email me your address they get it mailed out to you. My email is simplyraising8@gmail.com

  2. Girl, this had me in tears. You are such an amazing woman....strong isn't a big enough word. I'm so glad your beloved has such a wonderful woman to take care of him.

    1. Thanks Lisa but I don't know if I deserve all this praise. I am just taking it one day at a time and doing what I have to do.

  3. What a beautiful post - sad, but touching, and so true.

    While mom lived with me I would often hear from friends ... I don't know how you do this.

    Inside ... I used to shake my head and think - there is no magic to this, you just do it. Just like any other hard thing in your life, you just keep going on.

    As a new reader of your blog, I have spent some time reading your posts - especially the ones related to your husband and how life has changed. I can't tell you how moved I am by your journey. Our lives are similar and our reactions are mirrors of each other.

    Just keep moving forward, dear lady ... there is no other direction!

    1. That is what I am trying to do. Take it one day at a time. It is still hard but what choice do I have?


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