my dad's health has been on the decline ever since he took his first heart attack in '96. over the last 15 years, he has undergone surgery after surgery, suffered multiple heart attacks, encountered countless complications from being diabetic, suffered a stroke, lived with severe kidney failure, and lost his ability to walk, among other things.
but behind all of this stood my mom, my dad's right handed woman, and the strongest woman i know.
to say that she stood by her vow to love my dad 'through sickness and health' is an understatement. over the past year and a bit, i've watched her 'put her life on hold' to take care of my dad 24 hours a day, and trust me when i say that this was no easy task! she organized and administered his meds [about 130 pills a week - not including his insulin dose 3x/day], kept track of his multiple doctor's appointments, cooked, counted his calorie intake, cleaned up certain messes, and helped him up when he lost his balance on the days he decided to be stubborn and independent [i don't blame him].
as his health worsened, so did my mom's stress level. and yet she continued to take care of him because she loved him, and because she ... wait for it ... promised to love him 'until death do them part'.
now, let it be said that in no ways am i here to bash [or judge] anyone who has been married and since divorced or separated. i understand that there are situations that warrant such a decision, BUT i also believe that we live in a world that gives up on love far too easily.
the media is the worst at depicting this. i can barely flip through the channels nowadays or pick up a magazine without hearing about someone's marriage ending in '72 days'. i find this disheartening and confusing, really. how can one go from "until death do us part" to "until you make me mad or hurt my feelings?" [again, i know that not all marriages end this quickly - or because of such 'pettiness' - i'm simply just making a point].
in my opinion, the media should also depict stories like that of my mom and dad; stories of love and commitment, because, well, marriages like those exist, too. i know this to be true because i was fortunate enough to be able to watch my mom and dad live out the vows they made to each other 32 years a go. and i couldn't be more grateful.
" dear children, let us not love with words and speech, but in actions and in truth" [1 john 3:18]