Greetings from Vermont! I'm a long way from home this morning, but happy to have a get-a-way this week to spend time with some amazing people. The snow is gorgeous and while I will be working a bit from here, I will also be snowboarding (or at least trying as I am not all that good) and also watching Joe as he masters the board on his prosthetic. He is simply amazing. I feel like there is nothing he can't do, and I am constantly in awe of him. I'll be sharing lots more on his snowboarding experience with his new leg next week for this amputation blog series.
Today's topic is how we got through all of this. I am still struggling with where to begin, but I feel like this has been the biggest lesson I've learned throughout this whole ordeal and want to share it. Perhaps we'll start where we left off last time: the best decision I ever made.
As soon as I made the decision that I was all in, Joe became my priority. Our relationship became my priority. I knew that no matter what life would throw at us that if we had each other we could get through it. I know that sounds SUPER cheesy and you've probably heard that before, but until you're in a stressful, life-changing situation sometimes you don't completely understand it.
Joe and I's ongoing 'thing' is that we are on the same team. We may have different views on certain subjects; and sometimes we can both be a bit stubborn. But it all comes down to the fact that no matter what we have each others backs. That no matter what our fight is that our love for each other is bigger than it. Sometimes that means sucking up my pride and admitting I'm wrong. Sometimes it means looking at the situation from a different perspective. Sometimes it means that no matter how mad I can be, I need to suck it up and be there for him when he needs me.
I don't remember the specifics of it, but I do recall one day being pretty upset with Joe for something. After about 5-10 minutes of awkward silence and fuming, Joe had a bout of phantom pain hit and was in a lot of pain. I totally forget what it was that we were fighting about, but immediately my main concern was helping him get through the pain. Suddenly, in comparison, our little spat was completely insignificant and we were reminded that we were in this to be there for each other.
So here's a funny story for you (well, funny now...).
A few weeks ago, Joey and I got in our first REAL, BIG fight. I mean, he hung up on me and I was planning on giving him the silent treatment ALL day, which can be really hard when you work in the same office. After I cooled off (like 10 minutes later) all I wanted to do was talk to him because he's the one person I go to for everything. I was fighting with him, but all I wanted to do was vent to him about how much I didn't want to be fighting. When he finally came back to the office, it took less than 10 minutes to smooth it all out. And that evening when he came home from work, he brought me this:
I haven't laughed that hard in a long time. I mean, I died for a good 20 minutes.
Now, if you don't know, I make custom wine labels. I have a 'Wedding Set' which is a wedding gift that includes a first fight label. So to see this one that he hand made for me totally melted my heart.
I think you get my point. That when you are going through something so traumatic and so life-changing, you absolutely have to remember that the love you have for that person is bigger than any petty fight or annoyance that may come up. That's why I call his surgery a challenging yet beautiful experience; because as hard as it was, our relationship grew by so much because we allowed it to. And it has made us so much stronger as both individuals and a couple.