For Better or For Worse

God gave me the most incredible husband on the face of this earth and beyond.

I’ve thought many-a-times over the last few months, “So this is what they mean when they say, ‘or for worse’….” I’ve heard a lot of people reference vomiting as one of the first “for worses” (I know that’s not a word) that they experience as a married couple. I don’t know what it is about having partially chewed, blended food mixed with stomach acid come back up and into sight again that so quickly trumps every fight, quarrel and difficulty, and qualifies it as a “for worse.” But, it’s true. There have been countless nights of Brian waking up to the sound of my heaving and the familiar splash into my faithful bucket–over, and over, and over. But he’s never ONCE in those moments been awakened from his sleep and ever said anything like, “So this is what they mean when they say, ‘or for worse’.” No, he’s always responded in immediate selflessness, immediate service, immediate affirmation, and immediate love. And you know, you can do anything for a week or even a month. But I tell you what…come month 2, 3… of constant nausea and vomiting, I was so defeated and he was still so strong. I had tried EVERYTHING, but my body is no longer my own…there is nothing I can do to get it back under my control. So when the third throw up of the night would come, all I could think was, “This is the worst…and there’s nothing I can do about it…” And Brian would barely be out of his slumber before he was quenching my fear with truth and hope: “Oh, I’m sorry…you’re doing such a great job! You’re such a great mother to our baby! You’re going to make it…it’s going to be okay…”

Today, I broke my 10-day vomit-free streak. Brian had just left to go to breakfast with a friend when the nausea that had plagued me for the previous 3 hours finally took over and discovered the outside world by launching itself through my throat and out of my mouth.

“I’ll always have those 10 days!” I texted him, after relaying the news.

“I’m so sorry, my Love,” he so gently and lovingly replied.

He got home from breakfast, came immediately upstairs to check on me, held me for a moment with such tender compassion, and then without saying a word, he picked up my vomit bucket to bring into the bathroom to wash out, a routine he has become quite practiced at the last 3 months. “I haven’t gotten to do this for you in 10 days!” he joyfully declared.

And with tears in my eyes, I just silently thanked God again for this man He has brought into my life, who serves me with such a gracious love and whose attitude towards this “for worse” could not be better. Without ever being asked to do so, Brian has cleaned out my vomit bucket virtually every single day and night–multiple times–for the last 3 months. And he’s never batted an eyelash. He has held my hair back when I didn’t have a hair tie. He has learned to know what I need when I don’t even know what I need. He knows when to just let me be, and when to distract me from the constant nausea and pain. He knows when to stay clear of me (at times, any little movement triggers the vomiting) and when to gently rub my back or hold my hand. He knows when to empathize with me, to just hold me and listen and tell me it’s going to be okay. And he knows when to encourage me and press me out of my tears and defeat, helping me declare hope over my body and our baby. He stays so strong, even when I have convinced myself and the world around me that vomiting must be my destiny for eternity. He’s always on top of putting a new bottle of apple juice in the fridge when the current one is getting low and buying me more boxes of Lucky Charms when we’re almost out (yes, apple juice and Lucky Charms are my two “needs” first thing every morning…blame it on Baby Moby!). He has picked up my slack in laundry, cleaning, dishes, grocery shopping…driven me to get Vitamin B shots in my bottom when I couldn’t drive myself…beared with me–mostly ;)–when all I craved my first trimester was watching Christmas movies over and over and over again.

And I’m just finally grasping that this “for worse” has really served as an amazing “for better” in our lives and in our marriage. We have grown so much as a team these last few months; our love for each other has deepened and widened… We have been through this trial TOGETHER… Praise you, oh God for this “for better” in our lives right now! Give me the understanding to see every “for worse” as it really is–as a “for better” in your hands…

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