He Didn't Agree to This

This isn't fair for my husband. He didn't agree to this when he married me.

This has been an awful, recurring thought in my mind for the last few weeks.  It feels so unfair that my husband didn't get to choose this life of mental illness, since I didn't know what was going on until after we were married, and the worst of it just started.  It's not fair to him that my mind is broken and that my heart is often broken too, despite how hard he tries to make my life perfect.  It's not fair to him that this illness steals my happiness, that it makes him do double the work since I don't carry my own weight, that it is unpredictable, and that it brings out the worst in me, the worst that only he gets to see.

It's not fair.  But I would never hear those words from his mouth.  Instead, I hear him constantly praising me for doing the smallest things, constantly telling me how much he loves me, constantly asking what more he can do to make life bearable (and then doing it), constantly saying that he loves to have opportunities to serve me, constantly encouraging me and helping me see the good in myself, and constantly reminding me that he gets to see the very best of me, along with the worst.  And as if this wasn't enough, he also constantly reminds me that this isn't fair to me either, so I should stop worrying about him.

Ever since I started experiencing depression, and especially now that I know it's not just depression, I have prayed to God every day thanking Him for the wonderful gift of my husband and also asking Him to give my husband the strength to help me bear my burdens.   I know it's not easy on him, but he does a remarkable job!

Often when I am upset and weighed down about how unfair this life is for my good husband, I remember this part of Elder Holland's talk "Like a Broken Vessel":
I bear witness of that day when loved ones whom we knew to have disabilities in mortality will stand before us glorified and grand, breathtakingly perfect in body and mind. What a thrilling moment that will be! I do not know whether we will be happier for ourselves that we have witnessed such a miracle or happier for them that they are fully perfect and finally “free at last.”
I hold onto this message so tightly, and it gives me incredible hope.  It carries me and helps me continue trying to find joy through this pain.

No, this life isn't fair.  But isn't that the point?  Isn't this life supposed to bring heartache, pain, and sorrow, all so that we can know joy?  Isn't that what faith is, moving forward not knowing what trials or challenges lie ahead, but trusting that whatever happens is in God's hands?

I think so.  And I think that my husband is the best example of faith that I know.  He didn't choose mental illness, but he chose me, and he reassures me every day that he will stick with his choice.  No matter what challenges we are called to face, we have each other, and we will face them together!

1 comment:

  1. I am so sorry to hear that this is your struggle. Mental illnesses suck. They are so hard. May God bless you in your trial. You have a winner of a husband there! What an example of selflessness and love! -Carlin Pickett (friend to the Averys)