Friday, January 17, 2014

Authenticity in Blogland.....How Real Can We Be? Part 3

I've really enjoyed reading the comments I received to the previous two posts on this subject.  I always appreciate all the things I learn from everyone here.

I'd like to tell you a bit about my husband, J, and me, and our life together.  I've just made a cup of tea; won't you pull up a chair and join me?

J and I have been married for almost four years.  This is his first marriage and my second.  He had never been married before and had no children.  I had been previously married for over 20 years and had a bunch of kids (let's just say somewhere between 5 and 10).  I know what you're thinking.....we thought it too.  So did many of J's friends.

She has how many kids?  How long was she married for?  Are you crazy, Man?

Hey, J, Sadie sounds like a great gal, but you really should think this through. That's an awful lot to handle.  In other words, "Run like hell and don't look back!"

Now, let me say here that most of my kids were already grown and out of the house when J and I met.  Only the youngest three were still home.  

To be fair, I sat down with J a few months into our relationship and told him I didn't know what the future held in terms of my youngest children.  The reason for this is they all had very difficult beginnings before coming to live with me and my first husband (they are adopted).  Although they had made great strides since that time, they also had many issues and challenges.  So I wanted to be completely honest with J about what he was getting into.  I wanted him to be fully aware, and if he felt the uncertainty of what we may have to deal with down the road was too great, I completely understood.  Essentially, I was trying politely to show him the door. For his own good.

J didn't take my good intentions the way I'd hoped.  He thought I was inferring that he didn't have what it took to help me with these kids, that he was somehow lacking.  He thought I might go out and look for someone else who did.  (We now laugh every time we remember that night -- that here I was trying to save him, and his male ego was hurt!).

You don't understand, J.  I'm telling you this because you are one in a million.  You're a wonderful man, and there could really be a tough road ahead where these children are concerned, and it wouldn't be fair or honest of me not to let you know that.  It's begun to dawn on me that perhaps I should not be in any long-term committed relationship, and certainly not a marriage, if that would ever come my way, because what I'm facing here is a huge unknown.  All the adopted children have special needs.

J was not daunted.  Not one bit.  He told me he was here and not going anywhere.  He said he believed these kids were worth fighting for and wanted to help me.

It wasn't very long after that that we declared our love for each other.  We were married a year later.

The kids were very excited about the whole thing (they started asking us if we were getting married after we first told them we were dating).  I felt so blessed to have this wonderful man...my new husband...in my life...in all our lives.

I wish I could say that by giving our children a loving, stable home, they have grown leaps and bounds and are not struggling nearly as much as they were in the beginning.  This is true of our youngest child, but not the older three.

Over the years, our second, third, and fourth youngest children have been diagnosed with multiple mental health disorders.  Three of them are not living at home right now due to unsafe behaviors.  Their futures are uncertain.  We have many challenging and difficult decisions ahead to make regarding their treatment, and we've had to fight the broken mental health system every step of the way this past year in order to get them the proper help they need.

In the midst of this, J and I are doing our best to carry on.  To tell you that it has been difficult to maintain consistency in TTWD is a vast understatement.  Yet we need it.  More now than ever.  It helps keep us grounded and centered.  It keeps us closely connected to each other.

There is so much we do not have control over where our children are concerned, but it brings us both comfort and a measure of peace to know that J has control of me and our relationship.  I feel so safe with him at the helm.  He feels good knowing he is doing everything he can to cherish, guide, and protect me.

Yes, TTWD is a stabilizing force in our relationship -- in our marriage.

We've both made many changes since first starting this journey three years ago, and we have many more to make.  Life is ever evolving, and change is inevitable.  I want to be my best self for this wonderful man I love.  TTWD, although not by any stretch of the imagination an easy road, helps me to be my best self.  The same is true for J.

Thank you for letting me share my story with you.  It's so good to know there are many fellow sojourners here to lend support and encouragement.

I'm really glad to be here :)









11 comments:

  1. What a great story! You guys are amazing. I really hope that the system will give the kids what they needs - it truly is broken.

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    1. Thank you for your kind words, Leah. Just trying to do the best we can one day at a time. As for the system, it wasn't until we got involved with trying to get the kids help that we learned how broken it is......it is, in fact, in dire straits. Many psychiatric hospitals have been (and continue to be) shut down in our state. There simply isn't room for everyone that needs help. Add to that the fact that the ratio between the number of children who need psychiatric care and the number of pediatric psychiatrists is drastically disproportionate, and it leaves so many children (and their families) left out in the cold.

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  2. We're glad you are here too Sadie. :) What a wonderful beginning with your husband that he was so willing to be there for all of you. Looking forward to knowing you more :)

    hugs
    sara

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    1. Ah, thank you, Sara. Right back atcha :)

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  3. I can certainly understand how ttwd would be helpful and not a hindrance in your life. All the fighting you do for your kids, it must be wonderful to know that once you are with your husband, you no longer have to be in control mode. The exact opposite actually. In turn for him it must do wonders to have effective control in some areas of life, ( you know when you don't want another snowman that is!).

    Very great job sharing your story Sadie! You shared enough for us to understand, but not too much *wink*. Here is to resolving some of those issues with child #3 in the nearer future.

    love
    willie

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    1. Thank you, Willie. Yeah, TTWD works great until we want something we can't have -- ain't that the truth...lol.

      Who knows? Maybe I can get those snowmen next year! NO TTWD law says we can't dream LOL

      Love,
      Sadie

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  4. WOW!!! You both are very wonderful people, I loved reading your story.
    honey

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    1. Hi Honey! It's so nice to meet you. Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment.

      Thanks for your kind words.......we're really just like most good parents who are trying everything in their power to help their children.

      I'm going to head over to your blog now. I'd not heard of it before. Looking forward to getting to know you :)

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  5. It strikes me that behind this "big secret" that becomes such a core of our lives is this profound safety we find in our husbands and in turn they find in us. When everything else is rocking, we turn to each other. It doesn't mean that DD works perfectly and how could it with all you have had going on, but that guy at your back is there. It's the perfect example of how giving up control makes you stronger, not weaker.

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    1. You've encapsulated it perfectly, Susie. J has told me from the beginning that his desire in TTWD is to make me stronger, not weaker. While I couldn't quite grasp it fully at the beginning, I do now :)

      Hugs,
      Sadie

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