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Marriage

Daddy Hands

I awoke in the night to find my husband, Marty, gently rocking our baby son, Noah.

I stood for a moment in the doorway, watching this amazing man with whom I was so blessed to share my life, lovingly stroke Noah’s fat pink cheeks in an effort to comfort him.

I felt in my heart that something was seriously wrong with Noah. This was one of several nights Noah had been up, burning with a high fever.

Tears filled my eyes as I watched my beautiful husband move Noah’s little cheek up against his own chest, so that Noah could feel the vibrations of his voice. Noah is deaf. Learning to comfort him has brought on a whole new way of thinking for us. We relied on our voices, a soothing lullaby, audio toys, and music to comfort our other children. But with Noah, we need to use touch, his soft blankie, sight, the feel of our voices, and most importantly, the use of sign language to communicate emotions and a sense of comfort to him. My husband made the sign for “I love you” with his hand and I saw a tear roll down his cheek as he placed Noah’s tiny, weak hand on top of his.

We had taken Noah to the doctor more times than I can remember. It had been a week and a half and Noah’s fever remained very high and very dangerous, despite everything the doctor or we had tried. I knew in my soul the way only a mother can know, that Noah was in trouble.

I gently touched my husband’s shoulder and we looked into each other’s eyes with the same fear and knowledge that Noah’s wasn’t getting any better. I offered to take over for him, but he shook his head, and once again, I was amazed at this wonderful man who is the father of my children. When many fathers would have gladly handed over the parenting duties for some much needed sleep, my husband stayed stubbornly and resolutely with our child.

When morning finally came, we called the doctor and were told to bring him in again. We already knew that he would probably put Noah in the hospital. So, we made arrangements for the other children, packed bags for all three of us, and tearfully drove to the doctor’s office once again. Our hearts filled with dread, we waited in a small room, different from the usual examining room we had become used to. Our doctor finally came in, looked Noah over, and told us the news we expected. Noah had to be admitted to the hospital. Now.

The drive to the hospital in a neighboring town seemed surreal. I couldn’t focus on anything, couldn’t think, couldn’t stop crying. My husband reassured me that he felt in his heart that Noah would be okay. We admitted Noah and were taken to his room right away. It was a tortuous night, filled with horrible tests that made my son’s tiny little voice echo through the halls as he screamed over and over.

I felt as if I were shattering from the inside out. My husband never wavered in his faith. He comforted me and Noah, and everyone who called to check on Noah. He was a rock.

When the first batch of tests were done, the nurse informed us that a spinal tap would be performed soon. Meningitis was suspected. Marty and I had prayer together with Noah. Our hands intertwined, we held our son and the love of my life lifted his voice to the Lord, telling him how grateful we were for this awesome little spirit with whom he had entrusted us. With tears streaming down his face, he humbly asked the Lord to heal our son. My heart filled with comfort and gratitude.

A short time later, the resident doctor came in. He told us that Noah’s first results were back, and that he had Influenza A. No spinal tap was needed! Noah would recover and soon be back to his zesty, tornado little self. And Noah was already standing up in the hospital crib, bouncing like he was on a trampoline. My husband’s talk with the Lord was already being answered.

Marty and I grinned at each other through our tears, and waited for Noah to be released from the hospital. Finally, in the middle of the night, our own doctor came in and told us that it was fine to take Noah home. We couldn’t pack fast enough!

A few days later, I was cooking dinner. Noah was healing, slowly but surely. I felt at peace and knew my husband was the greatest father I could ever want for my children. I peeked around the corner into the living room, and chuckled at the picture I saw. There was my husband, sitting in his “daddy chair”, Noah in his lap. They were reading a book, dad taking Noah’s teeny hands to help him form the signs for the words in the book. They both looked up and caught me watching them, and my husband and I simultaneously signed “I love you” to each other, then to Noah. And then Noah put his little arm up, trying to shape his tiny hand in his own effort to sign “I love you” to his daddy. I watched with tears as my husband carefully helped him form his tiny fingers into the sign with his own gentle hands. Daddy hands.

By Susan Fahncke

{ 34 comments }

Attitude – One of Life’s Choice

My wife, Tere, and I purchased a new car in December. Even though we had tickets to fly from California to Houston to visit her family for Christmas, we decided to drive to Texas to break in the new car. We packed the car and took off for a wonderful week with Grandma.

We had a wonderful time and stay to the last possible minute visiting with Grandma. On the return trip we needed to get home in a hurry, so we drove straight through — one person driving while the other one slept. After driving in a hard rain for several hours, we arrived home late at night. We were tired and ready for a hot shower and a soft bed. I had the feeling that no matter how tired we were, we should unpack the car that night, but all Tere wanted was the hot shower and soft bed, so we decided to wait and unload the car in the morning.

At seven o’clock in the morning, we got up refreshed and ready to unpack the car. When we opened the front door, there was no car in the driveway! Tere and I looked at each other, looked back at the driveway, and looked at each other again. Then Tere asked this wonderful question, “Well, where did you park the car?”

Laughing, I answered, “Right in the driveway.” Now we knew where we had parked the car, but we still walked outside, hoping that maybe the car had miraculously backed out of the driveway and parked itself by the curb, but it hadn’t.

Stunned, we called the police and filed a report that activated our high-tech tracking system. To be on safe side, I also called the tracking system company. They assured me they had a 98 percent recovery rate within two hours. In two hours, I called again and asked, “Where’s my car?”

“We haven’t found it yet, Mr. Harris, but we have a 94 percent rate recovery within four hours.”

Two more hours passed. I called again and asked, “Where’s my car?”

Again they answered, “We haven’t found it yet, but we have a 90 percent recovery rate of finding it within eight hours.”

At that point, I told them. “Your percentage rate means nothing to me when I’m in the small percentage, so call me when you find it.”

Later that day, a commercial aired on telephone with the automaker asking, “Wouldn’t you like to have this car in your driveway?”

I responded, “Sure I would! I had one yesterday.”

As the day unfolded, Tere became increasingly upset as she remembered more and more of what had been in the car — our wedding album, irreplaceable family photos from past generations, clothes, all of our camera equipment, my wallet and our checkbooks, just to name a few. These were items of little importance to our survival, yet they seemed of major importance at that moment.

Anxious and frustrated, Tere asked me, “How can you joke about this when all of these things and our brand new car are missing?”

I looked at her and said, “Honey, we can have a stolen car and be all upset, or we can have a stolen car and be happy. Either way, we have a stolen car. I truly believe our attitudes and moods are choices and right now I choose to be happy.”

Five days later our car was returned without a trace of any of our belongings, and with over $3,000 worth of damage to the car. I took it to the dealer for repair and was happy to hear they would have it back to us within a week.

At the end of that week, I dropped off the rental and picked up our car. I was excited and relieved to have our own car back. Unfortunately, these feelings were short-lived. On the way home, I rear-ended another car right at out freeway exit ramp. It didn’t hurt that car I ran into, but it sure hurt ours—another $3,000 worth of damage and another insurance claim. I managed to drive the car into our driveway, but when I got out to survey the damage, the left front tire went flat.

As I was standing in the driveway looking at the car, kicking myself in tail for hitting the other car, Tere arrived home. She walked up to me, looked at the car, and then at me. Seeing I was beating myself up, she put her arm around me and said, “Honey, we can have a wrecked car and be all upset, or we can have a wrecked car and be happy. Either way, we have a wrecked car, so let’s choose to be happy.”

I surrendered with a hearty laugh and we went on to have a wonderful evening together.

By Bob Harris

{ 19 comments }

Burned Biscuits

When I was a little child, my mom liked to make breakfast food for dinner every now and then. And I remember one night in particular when she had made breakfast after a long, hard day at work.

On that evening so long ago, my mom placed a plate of eggs, sausage and extremely burned biscuits in front of my dad. I remember waiting to see if anyone noticed! Yet all my dad did was reach for his biscuit, smile at my mom and ask me how my day was at school. I don’t remember what I told him that night, but I do remember watching him smear butter and jelly on that biscuit and eat every bite!

When I got up from the table that evening, I remember hearing my mom apologize to my dad for burning the biscuits. And I’ll never forget what he said: “Baby, I love burned biscuits.”

Later that night, I went to kiss Daddy good night and I asked him if he really liked his biscuits burned. He wrapped me in his arms and said, “Your Momma put in a hard day at work today and she’s real tired. And besides – a little burned biscuit never hurt anyone!”

You know, life is full of imperfect things… and imperfect people. I’m not the best housekeeper or cook. What I’ve learned over the years is that learning to accept each other’s faults – and choosing to celebrate each other’s differences – is one of the most important keys to creating a healthy, growing, and lasting relationship. And that’s my prayer for you today!

By Deb Billy Graham

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Marriage – very touching!

When I got home that night as my wife served dinner, I held her hand and said, I’ve got something to tell you. She sat down and ate quietly. Again I observed the hurt in her eyes.

Suddenly I didn’t know how to open my mouth. But I had to let her know what I was thinking. I want a divorce. I raised the topic calmly.

She didn’t seem to be annoyed by my words, instead she asked me softly, why?

I avoided her question. This made her angry. She threw away the chopsticks and shouted at me, you are not a man! That night, we didn’t talk to each other. She was weeping. I knew she wanted to find out what had happened to our marriage. But I could hardly give her a satisfactory answer; she had lost my heart to Jane. I didn’t love her anymore. I just pitied her!

With a deep sense of guilt, I drafted a divorce agreement which stated that she could own our house, our car, and 30% stake of my company.

She glanced at it and then tore it into pieces. The woman who had spent ten years of her life with me had become a stranger. I felt sorry for her wasted time, resources and energy but I could not take back what I had said for I loved Jane so dearly. Finally she cried loudly in front of me, which was what I had expected to see. To me her cry was actually a kind of release. The idea of divorce which had obsessed me for several weeks seemed to be firmer and clearer now.

The next day, I came back home very late and found her writing something at the table. I didn’t have supper but went straight to sleep and fell asleep very fast because I was tired after an eventful day with Jane.

When I woke up, she was still there at the table writing. I just did not care so I turned over and was asleep again.

In the morning she presented her divorce conditions: she didn’t want anything from me, but needed a month’s notice before the divorce. She requested that in that one month we both struggle to live as normal a life as possible. Her reasons were simple: our son had his exams in a month’s time and she didn’t want to disrupt him with our broken marriage.

This was agreeable to me. But she had something more, she asked me to recall how I had carried her into out bridal room on our wedding day.

She requested that every day for the month’s duration I carry her out of our bedroom to the front door every morning. I thought she was going crazy. Just to make our last days together bearable I accepted her odd request.

I told Jane about my wife’s divorce conditions. She laughed loudly and thought it was absurd. No matter what tricks she applies, she has to face the divorce, she said scornfully.

My wife and I hadn’t had any body contact since my divorce intention was explicitly expressed. So when I carried her out on the first day, we both appeared clumsy. Our son clapped behind us, daddy is holding mommy in his arms. His words brought me a sense of pain. From the bedroom to the sitting room, then to the door, I walked over ten meters with her in my arms. She closed her eyes and said softly; don’t tell our son about the divorce. I nodded, feeling somewhat upset. I put her down outside the door. She went to wait for the bus to work. I drove alone to the office.

On the second day, both of us acted much more easily. She leaned on my chest. I could smell the fragrance of her blouse. I realized that I hadn’t looked at this woman carefully for a long time. I realized she was not young any more. There were fine wrinkles on her face, her hair was graying! Our marriage had taken its toll on her. For a minute I wondered what I had done to her.

On the fourth day, when I lifted her up, I felt a sense of intimacy returning. This was the woman who had given ten years of her life to me.

On the fifth and sixth day, I realized that our sense of intimacy was growing again. I didn’t tell Jane about this. It became easier to carry her as the month slipped by. Perhaps the everyday workout made me stronger.

She was choosing what to wear one morning. She tried on quite a few dresses but could not find a suitable one. Then she sighed, all my dresses have grown bigger. I suddenly realized that she had grown so thin, that was the reason why I could carry her more easily.

Suddenly it hit me… she had buried so much pain and bitterness in her heart. Subconsciously I reached out and touched her head.

Our son came in at the moment and said, Dad, it’s time to carry mom out. To him, seeing his father carrying his mother out had become an essential part of his life. My wife gestured to our son to come closer and hugged him tightly. I turned my face away because I was afraid I might change my mind at this last minute. I then held her in my arms, walking from the bedroom, through the sitting room, to the hallway. Her hand surrounded my neck softly and naturally. I held her body tightly; it was just like our wedding day.

But her much lighter weight made me sad. On the last day, when I held her in my arms I could hardly move a step. Our son had gone to school. I held her tightly and said, I hadn’t noticed that our life lacked intimacy.

I drove to office… jumped out of the car swiftly without locking the door. I was afraid any delay would make me change my mind… I walked upstairs. Jane opened the door and I said to her, Sorry, Jane, I do not want the divorce anymore.

She looked at me, astonished, and then touched my forehead. Do you have a fever? She said. I moved her hand off my head. Sorry, Jane, I said, I won’t divorce. My marriage life was boring probably because she and I didn’t value the details of our lives, not because we didn’t love each other anymore. Now I realize that since I carried her into my home on our wedding day I am supposed to hold her until death do us apart.

Jane seemed to suddenly wake up. She gave me a loud slap and then slammed the door and burst into tears. I walked downstairs and drove away.

At the floral shop on the way, I ordered a bouquet of flowers for my wife. The salesgirl asked me what to write on the card. I smiled and wrote, I’ll carry you out every morning until death do us apart.

That evening I arrived home, flowers in my hands, a smile on my face, I run up stairs, only to find my wife in the bed – dead.

My wife had been fighting CANCER for months and I was so busy with Jane to even notice. She knew that she would die soon and she wanted to save me from the whatever negative reaction from our son, in case we push thru with the divorce –At least, in the eyes of our son— I’m a loving husband…

The small details of your lives are what really matter in a relationship. It is not the mansion, the car, property, the money in the bank. These create an environment conducive for happiness but cannot give happiness in themselves. So find time to be your spouse’s friend and do those little things for each other that build intimacy. Do have a real happy marriage!

Author Unknown

{ 152 comments }

Great marriage story

My husband is an Engineer by profession, I love him for his steady nature, and I love the warm feeling when I lean against his broad shoulders.

Three years of courtship and now, two years into marriage, I would have to admit, that I am getting tired of it. The reasons of me loving him before, has now transformed into the cause of all my restlessness.

I am a sentimental woman and extremely sensitive when it comes to a relationship and my feelings, I yearn for the romantic moments, like a little girl yearning for candy. My husband, is my complete opposite, his lack of sensitivity, and the inability of bringing romantic moments into our marriage has disheartened me about love.

One day, I finally decided to tell him my decision, that I wanted a divorce.

“Why?” he asked, shocked. “I am tired, there are no reasons for everything in the world!” I answered. He kept silent the whole night, seems to be in deep thought with a lighted cigarette at all times. My feeling of disappointment only increased, here was a man who can’t even express his predicament, what else can I hope from him? And finally he asked me:” What can I do to change your mind?”

Somebody said it right, it’s hard to change a person’s personality, and I guess, I have started losing faith in him. Looking deep into his eyes I slowly answered : “Here is the question, if you can answer and convince my heart, I will change my mind, Let’s say, I want a flower located on the face of a mountain cliff, and we both are sure that picking the flower will cause your death, will you do it for me?” He said :” I will give you your answer tomorrow….” My hopes just sank by listening to his response.

I woke up the next morning to find him gone, and saw a piece of paper with his scratchy handwriting, underneath a milk glass, on the dining table near the front door, that goes…. My dear, “I would not pick that flower for you, but please allow me to explain the reasons further..” This first line was already breaking my heart. I continued reading.

“When you use the computer you always mess up the Software programs, and you cry in front of the screen, I have to save my fingers so that I can help to restore the programs. You always leave the house keys behind, thus I have to save my legs to rush home to open the door for you. You love traveling but always lose your way in a new city, I have to save my eyes to show you the way. You always have the cramps whenever your “good friend” approaches every month, I have to save my palms so that I can calm the cramps in your tummy.

You like to stay indoors, and I worry that you will be infected by infantile autism. I have to save my mouth to tell you jokes and stories to cure your boredom. You always stare at the computer, and that will do nothing good for your eyes, I have to save my eyes so that when we grow old, I can help to clip your nails, and help to remove those annoying white hairs. So I can also hold your hand while strolling down the beach, as you enjoy the sunshine and the beautiful sand… and tell you the color of flowers, just like the color of the glow on your young face… Thus, my dear, unless I am sure that there is someone who loves you more than I do… I could not pick that flower yet, and die.. ”

My tears fell on the letter, and blurred the ink of his handwriting… and as I continue on reading… “Now, that you have finished reading my answer, if you are satisfied, please open the front door for I am standing outside bringing your favorite bread and fresh milk… I rush to pull open the door, and saw his anxious face, clutching tightly with his hands, the milk bottle and loaf of bread….

Now I am very sure that no one will ever love me as much as he does, and I have decided to leave the flower alone…

That’s life, and love. When one is surrounded by love, the feeling of excitement fades away, and one tends to ignore the true love that lies in between the peace and dullness.

Love shows up in all forms, even very small and cheeky forms, it has never been a model, it could be the most dull and boring form.. . flowers, and romantic moments are only used and appear on the surface of the relationship. Under all this, the pillar of true love stands… and that’s our life… Love, not words win arguments…

{ 155 comments }