Thursday, November 12, 2009

A Tribute

To my beloved:

All day, I've watched the emails you've sent to our home account.  The tributes, applause, and moving words from those you've worked with these past 17 months.

Now it's my turn.

20 years ago this week, I ditched the plaid pants, took a chance, and went to see Pirates of Penzance with you. Baked an apple pie, sat in a freezing Datsun while nursing a fever, drove out to a little town called Pelham. . . . . . . . and said yes.

Yes.  To what, I had no idea.  Neither of us did.

To new life in Christ.  To five beautiful souls gracing our lives.  To ups and downs, ins and outs, North and South, richer and poorer, joys and sorrows.  Peals of laughter and agonizing, soul-crushing depths of despair.  And the Lord holding our hand and bringing us through it all.

You may never know.

How much I admire you, your steadfastness in supporting our family.  Getting up on Monday mornings at 4 am, living in so many different places, toting water to flush your own toilet, running extension cords for a little light.  The loneliness you must have struggled with while living apart from us.  Your integrity, and tenacity, and honor.  The impact you've clearly made on the lives of those around you.  The impact you make on the lives of your children, who have missed their daddy so much, and look to you as their guide.

You may never know.

They have seen Christ through you.  And I have seen Christ in you. 

I don't know what the Lord has for us.  Thankfully, I didn't know 20 years ago, either.

But I do know this.  As long as He allows, I will walk beside you.

For I love you.  And it will take me a lot more than the next 20 years to tell you so.

Welcome home, darling.


Melissa Sue said...

You do have a pretty great husband, H, and we're so thankful to call both of you friends. Blessings to you all as you begin the journey of returning back to life all together.

Much love from soggy Virginia!

Athena said...

The sister in me, going back to those late teen years, would have laughed hysterically at my big brother, had he said, "I'm going to get married, have five children, move to Alabama and end up in a job at an insurance company, where I commute to and live in a shack" I would have laughed hysterically at him and checked him into the nearest psychiatric facility. God brings us to places in our lives when He knows we are ready, and not a moment before.

I was stunned all those years ago to find a card sitting on the dresser at Avo's, where Yurii was staying for a little while, that was signed, "Love,Heather"

"YURIIiiii.....who is Heatherrrr????"

And so it goes. I love you sister!
Welcome home, Yurii!!!

Anna said...

You both inspire me. Yurii working so hard and juggling as many jobs as he could, and Heather buzzing around feverishly tending to everyones' needs. The pain of separation week after week, and yet the steady faith and fun sense of humor always there, and the great attitudes of your children as you've walked this long, hard road. Praying blessings on you all.

Tina said...

That is a beautiful tribute. Thank you for sharing.

Nancy said...

Very sweet.