The picture is of my husband and I. As cliché as it sounds, he has been the love of my life for over twenty years. We’ve had each other to rely on, hold on to, during the many ups and downs we’ve faced over the years.
He is also the first/natural father of my oldest son and I had planned on writing a post for Father’s Day about how adoption has affected him too. Left him with his own struggles and pain through the years.
But then life threw me a curve ball I didn’t expect.
A late night visit to the Emergency Room late last Wednesday night, and an unexpected turn of events, changed everything I had planned during the week while slapping me in the face to remind me just how important my family, ALL of them, is in my life.
I took my husband to the Emergency Room that night, expecting him to be administered some fluids and sent home. What I did not expect was test results coming back, my husband’s body shutting down and a quick, desperate rush to put him on oxygen, IV’s and so many other vital, life saving and monitoring devices, in the flash of an eye.
In one second in that tiny room, my husband and I were laughing with one another, joking about the late hours and what we would do once we left. In another, a swarm of nurses and technicians flooded the room, moving me aside as they quickly attached my husband to a myriad of machines in a frantic effort to keep him alive.
In the time leading up to Father’s Day, when I had planned on writing the post about first/natural fathers and the loss they too suffer through adoption, I instead found myself afraid to leave my husband in Intensive Care. Facing the very real and frightening fact that I almost lost him. That I am not, and probably never will be, prepared for a life without him in it.
I am thankful today that he is home with me, with our children. I get to hear his laugh. See his smile. And my children will still have their dad in their life who can push when he needs to but is also one of the first to laugh and joke and bring so much happiness to our lives.
In those first moments in Intensive Care when self pity worked it’s way in, I beat up on myself, on God, on anything and anyone who took my husband for granted and threatened to take him from mine and my children’s lives.
Life really is unexpected and unscripted. You don’t know what each new day will bring.
And it sounds so simplistic to say to cherish every day to be thankful for those you love and love you back. And in real time, real life, we rarely do that.
But then certain turns take us to a point where we again are reminded how amazing it is to have such love, such understanding and care that is shared within a family.
This was my turn to remember. My turn to hold tight to my husband and our children and realize just how lucky we are to have each other. To love each other. And be everything we can, and are, for each other, for as long as we possibly can.