Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Sweet Bethany

Man, Bethany puts up with a lot. I can’t even go into the things that I’ve put her through since we’ve known each other. One of our first ‘bonding’ experiences was right after we first started dating I got really sick one night – throwing up sick – and she came over the next day prepared to heal me. She brought Gatorade, crackers, movies, and Oust. Oust? Yeah – that’s how I knew she was different. Who thinks to bring Oust to a sick person? Bethany – that’s who. You know how nasty it is when you get sick and you’re going all kinds of ways in the bathroom? And then to have to smell it? Well that only makes you more sick. That Oust was thoughtful. But that’s just Bethany.

A few weeks later I had plans to spend part of my spring break camping with my friend David. Instead of being mad that I was going to spend part of our week off in the woods away from her she brought me a care package before we left. Guess what was in it? Oust – no. But that might have been useful. No, she brought a box of graham crackers, a bag of marsh mellows, and a giant Hershey’s bar. SMORE components. Awesome.

I've put her through some crazy stuff. Sometimes, I make the stupidest comments. Comments that really hurt her feelings – stuff I never mean, but guys just do that. We engage mouth without brain. Back in those first months, honest to goodness, she had every right to leave me to my big stupid self, but she never gave up on me. Bethany is amazing. Plain and simple – you already know if you’re reading this blog – I don’t think any people come to this blog just because they know me. I’m pretty sure that about 99.99% our readers are here, for one reason or another, because of Bethany. 17 different states, two different countries, all reading about whatever she decides to write. That’s pretty awesome to me – a writer (by degree only).

I remember January of this year – we left South Carolina and pointed the car toward Arkansas. We were flat broke with a new baby and I was out of work with only a hint of a job interview back in Russellville. On a wing and a prayer is putting it mildly. In the rear-view mirror I watched Bethany in the back seat with Jackson, her face showed no trace of fear. Any woman in her right mind would be wondering what in the world she was doing with this crazy, jobless man. I believed that God was leading us so I followed. She believed in me so she followed. I am so blessed to have her as my wife. My heart is and always will be hers.

Now, I dutifully drive into the city each morning to sit at my quiet cubicle and work. Bethany is greeted at 7:15 a.m. by a one year old who knows no boundaries. Then she's off to her job of full time mom, housekeeper, budget balancer, meal planner, laundry service, free counseling, and in her free time she works at a hospital for crazies the mentally ill. WHEW. All I can give her is love and a great big "thank you!" because I certainly can't pay her what she's worth.

I read an old email that I sent Bethany when we were dating. I tacked it on here because I love to read old stuff and think about how time has changed the meaning.

Thank you for taking a chance with your heart. For taking a chance on me- yes, it seems like a gamble, but I promise you that I’ll pay off. Years and years and years from now, you'll look back and say with a satisfied smile, “he was worth it”. He was worth a few more years in Arkansas. He was worth some late night phone calls. He was worth every ounce of energy I’ve put into him.
~ 4/21/2004, 12:09 a.m.

I hope it has been.


Ben and Bethany said...

what an amazing husband I have. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Bethany, I hate to have to be the one to tell you this, but... I think Ben is in love with you. I know, just sit down and breathe in and out. It'll be okay. We can get through this. ;)

Anonymous said...

Yes Tough times! But I hope I helped some... LOL! But I do have a Amazing daughter! She is more like my Mom than I could ever be! But Bethany also has a amazing Husband. How wonderful when God answers prayers! When You Want your children to have the best life they can! We are all human and say things do things that we wish we had not.:( But Your Mother would be so proud of you, Because You are a Wonderful Husband,Father and great Christian guy! I know I'm thankful to call you my son! Thank you for making Bethany so Happy! And bad times make the good ones a lot more special. With much love, Mom :)

Courtney's World said...

You caught a good one Bethany and Ben you caught a good one too.

Now, how in the world do you make your page so pretty and cute? I am about to hand over my password to you guys to set mine up.


Laura said...

Wow Bethany, what a sweetie you've got!

Ben- I'll leave you my husband's contact information, maybe you guys can chat! lol.

Ben said...

Yes, "anonymous", the bad times DO make the good times much more special. I'm so thankful for the wonderful family God has blessed me with. I don't have the privilege of seeing my mom down here anymore, but in the space of a year after she was gone The Lord brought even more love into our family. There's Jackson, Bethany, You, Matt, Madison and all of your kin (whom I loved from day 1). Then, Glennis, Katherine and Olivia, Karleigh, Kole, Hannah, Cael, and two new babies to appear later this year. WHEW!

Like Job said, "...You have given, and you have taken away. May your name be praised." (Job 1:21)

He surely wasn't kidding about the 'give' part.

"...the Lord made him successful again. He gave him twice as much as he had before." (Job 42:10)
"The Lord blessed the last part of Job's life even more than the first part." (Job 42:12)

I know I'm no Job, but I can't help but reflect his sentiment:

"My ears had heard about you. But now my own eyes have seen you." (Job 42:5)


Ben said...

The comments are making me look way better than I am. I am what I am because of the great examples I've had (thanks mom and dad!)and because of Bethany helping me to be better. I was terrible at relationships when I met her.

SO... no credit to me, please.