Monday, December 17, 2012

MARRIAGE MINUTE #5: Laugh With Each Other

A time to weep, and a time to laugh;

a time to mourn, and a time to dance;  Ecclesiastes 3-4

Marriage Minute #5:  Laugh with each other!

My heart still aches for those 20 precious little souls lost on Friday in that horrific tragedy.  I really can’t stop thinking about it.  I’m still asking God for direction, because I feel like there’s so much more that can be done, but for now, I’m just praying—for ways we can change, for guidance, for wisdom, for peace, for fear to melt away, for an increase in faith and for joy.  Even though I have no idea how a mother could ever recover from something like that.   And I certainly don’t have a clue as to how a mother could ever laugh again or dance again, but God does, and I will pray that God will abundantly bless those families with unexpected joy and laughter at unexpected times and bring upon them a glimpse of hope and normalcy.  God did this for me and my husband when we were going through a very difficult time.  And if anyone ever told me that I was going to find something to laugh about in the midst of having a miscarriage, I would have thought they were crazy.  But it’s not crazy…it’s God.      
I had been trying unsuccessfully for a baby for years and when I finally got pregnant in 2007 after over 4 years of trying, I was so excited.  I couldn’t believe it.  This was it.  This baby was such a huge answer to prayer.  At 6 weeks, I began to bleed.  Just a little.  I kept telling myself that it was nothing.  Just some spotting.  I called my doctor on my lunch hour and she said to come in right after school.  I still had to teach 2 more classes which was very difficult to do, but as soon as the bell rang and I waved good-bye to my students, I flew out the door…in tears.  I was driving to the doctor’s office…in tears.  I walked in to the waiting room…in tears.  I filled out some paper work…in tears.  I was asked to pee in a cup…in tears.  I had to get an ultrasound…in tears.  There was nothing there.  No baby.  No heartbeat.  Nothing.  Dr. Stephanie tried to be hopeful and said that it may just be too early to see anything, and that I would need to wait to determine if it was a miscarriage or not.  She told me to go home and rest but if the bleeding became heavier or I experienced cramping, I was to head straight to the emergency room.  I left the doctors office…in tears.  I drove home…in tears.  I hugged my husband…in tears.  I sat on the couch all night…in tears.  I knew.

Supporting former Illini Player, Deron Williams, at the Utah Jazz Game
Just a couple years before this night, Brad and I realized that we needed to have something in common.  Something that we enjoyed doing together.  So we started watching basketball together which happened to be the year that Illinois was amazing and ended up making it to the championship game—Deron Williams, Dee Brown, Roger Powell, Luther Head…you know the team.  Brad and I have bonded over basketball ever since.  And when Deron Williams got drafted to the Utah Jazz, we became Utah Jazz fans.  Big ones.  We even bought the NBA Ticket and watched every game together (we didn’t have kids yet).  We even flew out to Utah to go to a game together.  It’s just what we needed.  To have something that we could do together…to talk about…to get excited about…to laugh about…it was great.  And it still is (too bad Illinois has stunk since then—maybe this year will be different, we’ll see).  So how does basketball fit in with this story? 
Skiing in Utah

Because as I sat on the couch after coming home from the doctor…in tears, Brad and I turned on the last Utah Jazz game of the season.  The game was not going in our favor and in the meantime, my condition got worse.  The bleeding became really heavy and I had severe cramping, so Brad took me to the emergency room… in tears.  They did blood work to find out if I indeed miscarried and we waited…in tears.  And waited…in tears…and waited…in tears.  Finally we were waiting so long to find out something that I already knew the answer to, so I asked Brad to turn on the Jazz game…in tears.  I sat there watching it for a while…in tears.  Then suddenly, out of nowhere…laughter.  Brad looked at me funny… wondering why after hours of tears…knowing that I most likely had miscarried…why would I be laughing?  He didn’t say anything to me at first.  Then, I started giggling to the point that I couldn’t stop.  Brad had to ask what was so funny.  And through the laughter, I told him…

“If anyone came in the room right now, they would think, ‘Poor lady, she’s having a miscarriage and all her husband cares about is watching the basketball game!  What an insensitive jerk.’  They would have no idea that I was the one who asked you to turn on the game.  They would totally blame you and feel so bad for me.” 

And the laughter continued.  Soon, we were both laughing.  Now, Brad couldn’t stop laughing either.  I wanted to see our team play, so we sat in the emergency room watching our team together…holding hands…laughing.  And in that moment, we found peace.  Peace in that no matter what happened, we had each other.  We were there for each other.  This bible is right...there is a time for everything.  And that night was a time to weep together and a time to laugh together.  The Jazz lost the game that night.  We lost our baby that night.  But in the midst of our pain, our sadness and our tears, God provided us with a very unexpected moment of laughter that we could share together. 

~Obviously, going to the ER that night, Brad and I didn’t think we would have ANYTHING to laugh about, but God was there through the agony to shine a glimpse of His light in and gave us a reason to laugh.  It’s something we still laugh about today.  That night bonded us together forever—because of the loss of our baby and because of the laughter we shared.  This week, I pray that you, too, will find unexpected bursts of laughter and joy in your marriage and in your life no matter what’s going on around you.  No matter what’s going on in our country right now.  No matter what’s going on in your marriage right now.  There is a time for everything, and I know we've all experienced weeping and mourning for this tragedy and for other things throughout our marriages and our lives, so I will be praying that it will soon be our time to laugh and to dance together!

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