The thing about starting a blog, or reinventing a blog might be a better description in my case, with a focus on turning it into a career of sorts is that, when you are not super-tech-savvy, you end up spending hours trying to “get educated.” When you spend hours upon hours attempting to educate yourself about how best to “launch” and “optimize” and “mobile-friendly-ize” and “promote” and “superfluffenate” your site, you don’t have the time or energy to actually write!
Yeah, for those who are wondering, I made that last one up just now.
But that’s about how it all sounds to me by the time I’ve spent a few hours trying to understand one of these techie concepts for making this site “the best”.
So I am craving the time or maybe the permission to just write. To just let my mind unload and sort and to perhaps even arrange a comprehensible post to share with you all.
I’d like to tell you about the great time we had with all four of the kids here Sunday to cook out. How rare it is for that to happen. How Tommy and I are a bit concerned that some of the kids seemed a little distant. How we’re not sure if it’s just a busy time for them or if we should prod a little and find out what’s up. How we worry that maybe we worry too much. Heh. I’d like to tell you how, at long last, they’ve almost got Casey’s Jeep back together so at least one of Tommy’s projects will be done soon and maybe I can get my husband back for awhile.
About how I sometimes get so bummed when he comes home from work with the phone stuck to his ear, still dealing with problems there or chatting it up with a friend and I am left standing on the porch, waiting for him to actually, totally “get home”. How even though he tries to let me know he is glad to see me by rushing in for a quick “hi” before heading out to the shop for the rest of the night, I begin to feel abandoned after a few weeks of this.
And then I think about all the years we actually existed in this sort of state for months at a time. I guess it stirs up the way I felt during our “dark secret” years and makes me feel hollow and sad. I don’t want to go back to that, but sometimes there’s just not a lot either of us can do about it. And when it’s not his work or an emergency that creates this situation, it makes it even harder to keep resentment at bay, ya know?
SoooOOOoooo…there you have it. Between feeling super-frustrated that this site isn’t doing better
(am I being too impatient? is my content that bad? is there too much diversity with my topics? am I just a lot more boring than I thought? or is it actually that I don’t have all those techie things figured out and employed? ARGH!)
and feeling pretty lonely at home, I’m in a funk. My brain is tired from trying to figure all the stuff out, from wondering why I don’t have more subscribers or likes or comments and when you add the fact that I’m just physically tired (more tired than I should be, in my opinion) and I’m worrying about how that’s gonna affect this trip to Orlando, it just has me all messed up inside.
I know this is just a season, a phase, a moment in time and things will get better as time goes on. But I am impatient and I’m fretful. When it comes to my marriage and the healing that we’ve had, I don’t wanna mess around with it. I don’t want to risk falling into old habits and bottle everything up the way I used to do.
I know God will honor our intentions to protect our marriage, to not take for granted how He has miraculously held us together and healed us. We just have to be sure those are more than just intentions! We have to turn them into actions.
I’m a little more than awed at the way the scripture from Sunday’s sermon (thanks, Terrance Brooks!) applies to this situation…
Revelation 2:5 “Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.”
So you probably get it by now that I am in favor of marriage. Marriage is important. It’s vitally important to defend and fight for your marriage. No matter what’s going on, aside from outright abuse, your marriage is worth a fight. It’s worth laying aside all your pride, rolling up your sleeves and getting in the mud and muck and fighting like all of hell is after you. Because it is.
Satan hates a strong, godly marriage where the family puts God first and rejects the world’s image of disposable marriages, discounted vows, discouraged couples and disaffected children, dismantled stability, discarded families. You’d better believe he’s after your marriage.
As you’ve seen, if you have read here much at all, our marriage was very atypical in many ways. We didn’t have that crazy first year with tons of sex and exploring our intimate life together, figuring out what we liked best, what each other wanted most, etc. Our first year was confusing…bewildering even. We didn’t understand why sex was so hard for us…for me. We were still hanging on to hope that time would take care of the issues, that it was just a matter of “trying more” or getting used to it…or SOMEthing!!
By the time we finally decided we needed medical help, we had been dealing with it for ten years, had two kids and for all intents and purposes, we looked like every other young couple. Nobody knew how we were struggling. We didn’t talk to anyone about it, not even each other except to yell when the frustration became too much.
I want to get Tommy to sit down with me and do a video. I’m not sure what he’ll think about that ha ha but I think it would be good for him to at least say a little bit about his side of things. We are both healing together. Even though the physical side of the problem was mine as far as the pain went, and perhaps I bore more of the depression and stuff like that, but he carried a lot of emotional pain as well.
We’ve never talked a whole lot about that. I mean, I have shared a little, just me and him, about how I felt and then of course, he’s heard me relate it to my therapist and read what I’ve written here about it, but we’ve never really discussed his side so much.
He might not want to. Maybe he never knew how to voice it or maybe it hurt too much to speak out loud. I have been in that place too, where I didn’t know how to put into words the way I felt.
I know there are a few men who read here, or at least they have at one time. heh I would like to hear from ALL of you, what you would ask Tommy? Are there parts of this story that you’d like his take on? Are there things that you would like to know from his side?
Please put those in the comments for us? I would really love for us to have a conversation about where he was, emotionally, and where he is now as we are in the healing process. What would he have done differently? What would he keep the same, if anything? What made him choose to stay? Did he really still have hope that our sex life would ever be remotely normal? Those are the questions I want to ask. I’m not sure I’ll like the answers, but I think it’s important for us to flesh this out and I feel like maybe others could benefit from hearing his viewpoint.
DON’T FORGET! Leave your questions in the comments! (or you can email them to me at: geannie [at] lifeindogyears [dot] com)
Hey y’all. I have some things on my mind and you know how that goes. smile I’m gonna try to sift through them here if you don’t mind. Any insights or commentary is always appreciated!
So…I alluded Monday to the fact that things are going well in the s-e-x department at my house. Hahaha… stop laughing! stifles a giggle If you’re new here and don’t know our back story, please read this first so you’ll be up on everything.
Did you read it? Okay, let’s proceed. So yeah, it’s a little weird to have been married for almost 31 years and feel the way we do these days. I think I can truly say that the healing is complete. I’ve lost count of our “encounters” in the past couple of weeks and that is just amazing! I used to consistently get bladder spasms or sometimes a full-on UTI every time we had sex. That’s understandable since it would be long periods of time in between! I finally learned to get up pretty quickly, go pee and avoided some of those, but sometimes, I’d get one in spite of that. I’m not one of those gals who can have a bladder issue or UTI and not even know it. No. I KNOW when I have it. It creates tremendous pain, unbelievable spasms and frequency which keeps me at home and close to a bathroom. It’s horrible, so it was a real pain to deal with. Yet another reason why I never wanted to have sex! My doctor has prescribed me some Macrobid after I explained to her how this scenario goes for me. She was SO cool about it! I hadn’t even mentioned this whole thing to her til I asked about some way to avoid this problem. She said anytime we had frequent or longer-than-usual intercourse, that I should take one of them.
I’ve only had it happen twice so far, and both times was a day or more later, but the Macrobid took care of it in one dose, so praise God!! That’s a relief!
We have really been like a couple of teenagers around here and it seems every time we had “plans” for later in the day, SOMETHING would always happen! For instance, when Tommy had to run shut off the pumps at the lake last week after the first of the severe storms? Yep. We had some plans. There have been times when we had more visitors than we would get in three months all in one flippin’ day!! Yep, we had them plans made then, too. Sheesh!
I am still trying to process how I feel about all this. I mean, obviously, I’m thrilled that we are finally able to be together without any pain. I’m over-the-moon that not only is there no pain, there is actually enjoyment for me! I honestly never ever thought I would be able to make love with my husband and not at least be uncomfortable. And to find that I am now suggesting that we make love?? That’s just so beyond our comprehension!
Are you getting uncomfortable with all this sex talk? Well, I’m sorry, but get over it. We’ve been married all these years, suffered unbelievably and done untold damage to our marriage because of not being able to have sex together…I refuse to be quiet. The whole purpose of sharing our story in the first place is in hopes of keeping other women or couples from suffering in silence the way we did for decades. We felt we had NOWHERE to turn for answers or help. I felt I was damaged, cursed, defective, worthless…you name it. I felt I had been deserted by God and was being punished for some reason by having this one, most basic thing in our marriage cause me so much pain I wanted nothing to do with it.
My poor husband, yes, he is a saint in my eyes. To have remained faithful to me in all that time. I know it was God who caused him to love me so much he couldn’t stand the thought of leaving me. I mean, it just doesn’t make sense otherwise, ya know? No man could love a woman so much that he’d go months and probably even a year or more between sexual encounters without Divine intervention. Especially not a woman who was so hurt and angry as I was. It is honestly bizarre that I actually want to be around Tommy now. I mean, don’t get me wrong…I never stopped loving him. I loved him even more when I realized he loved me so much that he put up with me! But I was SO angry, SO depressed. I just wanted to die. With all the things going on in my life…conflict with my parents or boys or daughter-in-law, stress from various obligations I had, money worries and then the diabetes and the constant struggle to control it… I was a complete disaster. And I took most of that out on him.
Looking at our lives now, I get this image of me…of my heart, all boarded up, overgrown, and closed to everyone and everything. A lot like these shutters…closed so long that vines had overgrown it then died and regrown. Over and over, waiting for someone or something to cut them away and pry the shutters open again.
It’s just overwhelming at times to realize how far we’ve come. What we’ve come through…from barren wasteland to beautifully vibrant and growing.
chuckle I guess this post has no purpose other than to praise God for the complete healing that’s taken place in our marriage. We are truly more in love now than ever and it’s a total love, in every area of our lives. Unlike most marriages where the physical side of love dies down the longer the marriage lasts, ours began as a dead garden that God has nurtured and “held out hope for” until His appointed time when He has brought us back to life.
If you are or have experienced this sort of problem in your marriage, please share or email me privately. I’d love to hear how things are going or how they’ve happened for you. I would LOVE to know that putting our story out there has helped someone. It’s no small thing to put something so raw and private and painful out into cyberspace for the world to read. We didn’t do it lightly or flippantly. We did it for no other reason than that God urged us to share so that other couples could benefit from our experience.
Hey y’all. I’m working so hard, trying to increase traffic here…build an audience, a subscription list, whatever else a successful blogger does. Most of the time, I feel like I’m just flopping around, splashing water into the floor, making a mess.
I see some steadiness in the amount of traffic, so I suspect some of you are just awesomely loyal readers and probably close friends who stop by often to see what crazy thing I’ve posted. I am so thankful for you!
I know I’ve said it before, but this blogging thing is a big deal to me. I started it after months and months of stewing and praying about whether I should even try. I’ve blogged off and on for about 16 years, so it seemed like the natural thing for me to do…try to monetize the thing I am so passionate about. I felt (and still feel, btw) that God was really nudging me in this direction and so, even though I didn’t feel completely ready, I took the plunge. I plopped down what little was left from our tax refund and started this site.
Looking back, a month later now, I see many mistakes. I think most of them are easily overcome though and not the kind that will break me or the blog. I still don’t understand stupid AdSense or why my husband can get an account with them like snap that and me, with my two (now three!) google accounts, can’t get any of them approved. I’m not sure I’m missing much though. I’m learning that AdSense isn’t the end-all-be-all it has been purported to be, so I have pursued other means of generating income through my blog.
Some of them I am pleased about, and some I will be glad when I can be done with. And no, for the record, I haven’t made a single cent so far. That really concerns me, but I have to remind myself how new it all is. I can’t do it all at once and I need to be patient.
But BOY, is that hard!!
Today, when I went to look at a “blogging schedule” thingie I got from the web, for today it says to post about relaxing. BAHAHAHA!! What is that even?!? I don’t have time right now to relax, and certainly not about the state of my blog. Some of these ‘blog helps’ aren’t really geared toward me, ya know? Many of the blogs in these groups are about how to create a successful website, how to find a niche to build, how to monetize and market whatever you are selling.
I just wanna share life with my readers. I want to encourage and inspire. I want my readers to leave feeling better than they did when they pulled up my site. I want them to find the courage to go on, the determination to stick it out. The comfort of knowing they are not alone, the peace of knowing someone else out here has been where they are. I want the person with t1d to find a friend, someone to commiserate with and rejoice in whatever victories we accomplish as PWD’s. (persons with diabetes)
I want the homeschooling mom to know she can do it and I know she can because I did it. I want her to know that the great mistake she feels she’s made is not the end. That she and her children are far better off just because she tried to teach them at home, whether she continues or not. And no matter what, as long as she is trying to do her very best for her kids, she is a winner!
I want that couple who is struggling with some sexual incompatibility or physical problem to know they are not alone. I want them to realize it’s okay to talk about it and that there are people out here who can help, both professionals and people like me who have been there, done that. I want that woman to know she’s not the first or only one to be facing what she is, and that she need not bury herself in depression and self-hatred or guilt because there is hope. I want to keep her and her husband from living the hell that we did for 30 years and to find healing and hope!
More than all this, I want people to know there is hope, no matter what the situation is, there is hope. There is peace to be had, no matter how big the mess or how damaged their soul, Peace is there for the asking in the person of Jesus Christ. I want them to know that it is because of Jesus that I am alive today. That I’m able to share and talk about the issues, struggles and problems in my life. Ultimately, I believe this is the reason God has been urging me to write.
I haven’t touched my book in over 6 months, but perhaps soon I’ll dig back into it. I still feel He is calling me to write it, but I’m at another crossroad about which direction to take with it. (ANY feedback would be appreciated on this, folks!!) The book has lived in my head for many years as a sort-of memoir, a story of my life and how I have dealt with diabetes, the depression and all the other physical and emotional side effects of having a chronic disease for so long. However, as we have come to this place of healing in our marriage, I feel THAT is also a topic that needs to be shared. It, of course, is much more personal, deeply painful but ultimately hopeful since our long journey through this has ended with our beginning the healing process. My conundrum is should these be separate or combined?
You probably didn’t know this, but I have a problem with compartmentalizing. ha ha! Meaning, I can’t do it. You may have noticed I began this post talking about the blog and now, here I am asking for input and suggestions for a direction of a book! I need help with my wandering mind, my rambling style of writing.
I know there are some writers out there who read here occasionally. I also know there are lots of readers who come here too. I want to hear from you! What appeals to you in a book? What topics are you most interested in? What are you most interested in learning more about? Help me out!
I look forward to a great discussion and some awesome feedback and suggestions! Let’s help each other!
*Disclaimer: I always hated that song, even though it was a hit during the peak of my teenage-music-loving days. (Sorry, Tina!) Read on to see why.
I was just out of high school when I got married. I wouldn’t Read More »
That title though, right?
I know, I know. Super dramatic. I didn’t mean for it to be, but it’s true. None of us deserve anything good that we have.
As a Christian, I am grateful to God for everything I have. Even things like diabetes and achy, stiff joints, and headaches. Yeah, even those things.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 (ESV)
” give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
So okay, I give God all the credit for my life, such as it is. And if it is inferior in any way, that is my own doing. I long to be all that He has planned for me and I know I fail horribly every day.
I’ve posted about the things going on in my marriage…the physical and emotional struggles that I have faced personally and that my husband and I have overcome together.
I have been reading lately about the things it takes to make a good marriage, to build a firm foundation for a new marriage, to sustain a strong, lasting marriage.
I like to think, and at this point in my life I believe, that we DO have a strong marriage. And at thirty years in, I think we can safely say it is a lasting one. I know, I know…longer marriages have ended in the past. But not ours.
After all those years of struggling to stay together, not because of a lack of love, but the inability to be physically close and now…now, we are finally learning how to be a ‘normal’ couple. A couple who isn’t avoiding physical intimacy. A couple who can actually share everything with each other. Now that we’re finally to that point, to realize that God preserved us to this point, I know that He didn’t put us together and preserve us though all this to let us fall apart now.
It’s hard to talk to anyone about all this. Even though my therapist at the pelvic health office has been beyond amazing in helping us deal with the physical problems and almost being a ‘counselor’ to help us learn to talk about these things, it’s hard to not have others to talk with, to not really be able to tell anyone about this stuff.
I have spent so much time trying to cover up the fact that there was a problem in our marriage, to hide that there was a void where there should have been deep intimacy. Not joining in conversations and giggly, knowing glances with other wives talking (conservatively!) about loving and being in love with their husbands.
I didn’t understand the way they really desired to physically be with their spouses because for me, that was painful. The fact that it hurt made me want to avoid it at all costs, made me feel like a failure, guilty, damaged and worthless. If I tried to just “grit my teeth” and “bear it” for my husband’s sake, it made him feel bad. It made me feel like I was letting him down. (What husband wants to “make love” to a wife who’s crying and telling him to just hurry?)
Maybe you can see why I have spent most of my adult life in some stage of depression. Sometimes very deep, very dark depression. I wondered for probably those first eight years how long before he’d just leave me. How long before he got sick of it and wanted out? Once when I was desperate enough to actually say as much to him, he let me know he loved me and he didn’t want out of the marriage.
I was pretty stunned, but grateful…and then even more depressed. I didn’t deserve him. Later, after nothing had improved and when I got desperate enough again, I told him to go find someone else. As long as no one knew, no…as long as our children never knew (because I just KNEW other people would eventually find out) that he should find someone who could fill that void for him. Someone who wouldn’t wince and cry with pain. Someone he could actually enjoy. But we would stay together for the boys and I wouldn’t begrudge him having another woman who wasn’t damaged like me.
Looking back now, I am SO SO SO thankful to God that he never took me up on that offer. Most any other man would have done it gladly I think. If he had sought physical companionship with someone else, there would have never been any healing between us. We could have never got to the place we are now, where we’re able to be a “regular” married couple, where I could be unafraid of physical contact with the man I love most in the world. This place where we are learning to heal from the last three decades of hurt, confusion, fear and depression.
God apparently had a plan. If we had “fixed it” our own way, how much we would have destroyed. Much the same way that Sarah and Abraham messed up God’s perfect plan (to make a nation of Abraham’s children…when he and Sarah had reached almost 100 years of age without bearing one single child) [See Genesis 18]
When Sarah chose to not believe God when He told them Sarah herself would give birth, she and Abraham decided to “help” God with Sarah’s idea to give one of her servants to him so she could “give them a child”.
Okay, now if you’re not familiar with Scripture, all this is sounding pretty far out to you. Just trust me that back in the first century, things were a little different. People had servants and polygamy was common. While Abraham just had the one wife, it was common to make concubines of servants. The prevalent reasoning was that large families with lots of sons were necessary to maintain farms and businesses and multiple wives were needed to bear all those children.
I know. Seriously, it sounds so barbaric, doesn’t it? So foreign! But even though it was NOT in God’s plan for men to take more than one wife, as usual, mankind does what it wants and God, in His mercy, works with that.
In this case, if you will read the story, you’ll find that Sarah’s “plan” was “a success”…at least by their standards, and the slave girl, Hagar, bore Abraham a son. However, God’s plan was NOT to create His nation from Hagar’s son, Ishmael, so in a few years, Sarah did indeed bare a son by Abraham. When you read the conflict that came from this tense, at-least-awkward situation and how it has ultimately affected the world, you’ll see that while God will mercifully work through the messes we make when we jack with His plans, He does not wipe out the consequences of the jacked plans.
Our world is today, several thousand years later, paying for the “plans” of Sarah and Abraham. Nevertheless, God remained true to His plan to make Abraham the “father” of His chosen people-nation.
So as I ramble through these thoughts, I am reminded that God doesn’t toss us out with the mess we make of His plan when we think we know better. He wipes off the dirt we wallowed in and sets us back on His path. He brings His plans to fruition, in spite of our meddling and gives us strength to cope with the aftereffects of what we’ve done.
I’m thankful to Him that my husband and I didn’t mess things up any worse than we did trying to wait for His conclusion in our marriage. We have a lot of healing to do because of our ways of “coping” all these years. How grateful I am that infidelity is not one of the things we have to deal with!
My parting thought for you is this…don’t give up. Don’t throw in the towel. If God can preserve a marriage like mine, He can save or rebuild yours. If you believe that He is the Almighty, do not discount His power in your marriage!
God’s got a plan. Try to stay out of His way!