Never in a million years did I think this would be us. Not at 29/30 years old. We've been through some interesting things, but surely it wouldn't get to brain tumor-type intensity. But everything has changed in the past two weeks. Everything. That's not to say life won't be "normal" again after a while, and/or that Sarah won't be fully functioning in the near future, but there is no way you walk away from a tumor in the middle of your brain, a successful removal surgery, an emergency surgery two days later and a shunt surgery the following week - and life not be entirely different.
It is said you gain wisdom just after you needed it. I certainly haven't gained all of the wisdom that is to come of this life-change, but my perspective on life has again been turned upside down, shaken, stirred, and tossed around a bit. To think that my beautiful wife, Sarah, would have had a tumor growing in the middle of her brain for years? Are you kidding me? And that we would find it the very same night following a conversation about how we just wanted 2012 to be a boring year, with no big changes to our world. And that it would come after we have welcomed two precious boys into creation? What. In. The. World?
We have spent 11 nights in the hospital since December 5. I have watched countless nurses and doctors come in and check on Sarah, on the hour, every hour, of every day. I have arranged, and rearranged, our hospital room furniture so we could live in the space provided us. I have bought a lot of coffee from the not-Starbucks coffee stand that has the Starbucks logo all over it that won't accept my Starbucks gift cards. I have been up and down what feels like most of the elevators Vandy has to offer, traversed its parking garages a few times over, and sat with many lovely people that have come by to visit or bring food and gifts.
Amid my exhaustion due to our situation, there is one thing I have learned a whole lot about these past two weeks: love.
Love from family.
Love from friends.
Love from nurses and doctors.
Love from co-workers.
Love from fellow church-goers.
Love from the man that married us.
Love from classmates.
Love from seemingly everyone we have ever known.
As for me, my love for Sarah.
Let me be very clear - this situation vehemently sucks. I hate this. There is not one thing I like about what has happened, and is happening, to us. I would not wish this on my worst enemy. This is not a fun time. This completely blows.
But no one promised any of us a life of total comfort and satisfaction. Who am I to think I am above the darkest and meanest this world has to offer? I am not. Sarah is not. None of us are.
It will be ok. In the midst of this confusion, it will be ok. It still sucks. But it will be ok.
Back to my love for Sarah. I'm just beginning to understand how Grandma loved Grandpa through seven years of alzheimer's, all the way to the very end. I'm just beginning to see how Mom loves Dad, and Dad loves Mom - and all of the other wonderful examples of stubborn, love-filled perseverance I have in my life.
When you go to bed having accepted you may lose your wife the following day, but then she makes it, something changes.
I hate that we are going through this, but for how it has positively impacted the love I have for someone I already loved, I may someday say it was all worth it. I'm not quite there on the latter, but the former is definitely true. My love for Sarah significantly began increasing at Summit Medical Center around 10:30 pm on Monday, December 5, 2011.
Love is all you need. It is all that really matters anyway.
After you're done here....
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