When we walked into church and sat down for the first time after his surgery, I realized we were THAT family. You know the one. Where people watch you walk in and they have horror behind their eyes at the thought of being in your shoes. Then they quietly bow their heads and begin silently praying to God- thanksgiving that it's not their problem to face. I've done it before, I admit it. I caught the eye of a friend across the chapel who tossed me a knowing half grin as if to say 'I wish it wasn't you guys. I'm so sorry.' We wished the same, but nothing can ever be wished away; it turns out.
I did think our family would have at least a decade's break from hardship. The grief of accepting and struggle to learn of my oldest having High Functioning Autism about broken us in half. The same year we were adjusting to life with our third child I was hit hard with severe post partum depression (plus) while Mike (all the while) was traveling for work on weekdays. I thought we had our fill of climbs uphill, both ways, barefoot in the snow. Nope. Apparently not.
Even still, today I want to tell everyone we're okay. I want to show up to church and hand out fliers. Sign language it to the masses during the opening hymn. Assure and comfort every wrinkled forehead that asks about his brain. You see, as weeks went on he had adrenal failure and we found out most of his pituitary gland was removed with the tumor, it still turns out alright. He will always take hormone supplements and testosterone injections, but it could be worse. I mean, to tell you the honest truth right now I don't think either of us have been happier or closer with one another. Sure, it's mostly due to the fact that Mike now sees me through thick testosterone-colored glasses and can't keep his eyes (or hands) off me. We liken it to the mind of a 16 year old boy seeing porn for the first time. His thrill for me is nonstop and the attention is as if I have become a celebrity overnight.
It also helps that I put on some healthy weight gain by eating my way through the stress. Some of this gain happened to spill generously into the boulder holder area. I like to consider that another of the Lord's tender mercies. Each morning when I get dressed I offer up a wink of thanks. We can now plan on something else to spend his annual bonus on instead of a plastic surgeon!
So don't feel bad for The Fullers. We really ARE doing okay. Better than before, actually. We're kind of like a coupla blissful newlyweds, really. And if you happen to see scratch marks on either of us don't be alarmed. We didn't get a cat, it's just his synthetic testosterone bringing us closer together.
Posted by liz at 3:10 PM