The measure of a lifetime

Beth-Then-and-Now

How do you measure a lifetime?

I was riding Beth home from the hospital yesterday – Lord willing, it will be the last day there for a while. A home care nurse is coming to administer her IV antibiotics over the weekend (and yours truly may get to do that on Sunday). She is still contending with some of the difficulties of graft vs host. She still has some itchies. Other problems she wouldn’t care to have me mention.

But remember, too, that it is the graft vs host effect that also works as a graft vs leukemia effect – it will continue to work inside her to attack and kill any latent leukemia, bad bone marrow, etc. That is the plan, anyway.

I love the little girl photograph of her on the left, and I look at her today, after all she’s been through, and I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that hers is a lifetime that’s been given to me. That is, even though I only met her at age 26, and I didn’t know her as a little girl, but everything she is, everything she’s suffered from that point till this, has been entrusted to me, as her husband.

Not long after the little girl photo was taken, she suffered a kind of triple tragedy in her life: her parents divorced, her mom came down with Multiple Sclerosis (which incapacitated her very quickly), and then she and her mom and sister were then moved to another state where they lived with grandparents who didn’t really want them and weren’t very kind about it. All of that happened within just a couple of years. It led to a hard life in which she became a runaway, was in and out of foster homes, and eventually led her to join the army. And once, as a young woman, she found security in the army years, it made sense for her as a 40 year old woman to join the army when another national crisis occurred.

God uses the things that we suffer to shape our lives. In some very real way, our sufferings are a part of us.

2 thoughts on “The measure of a lifetime

  1. Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes,
    Five hundred twenty-five thousand moments so dear.
    Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes
    How do you measure, measure a year?

    In daylights, in sunsets, in midnights, in cups of coffee, in inches, in miles, in laughter, in strife?

    In five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes,
    how do you measure a year in the life?

    How about love? Measure in love,
    Seasons of love.

    Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes!
    Five hundred twenty-five thousand journeys to plan.

    Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes,
    How do you measure the life of a woman or a man?
    Seasons of love.

    Like

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