Monday, June 7, 2010
And we continue....
This handsome fella to the right is Rick as a baby. Those eyes and that smile were the same!
The years between 2000 and 2002 were very difficult for us. I was in my early 40's and he was in his early 50's. There were times when I wondered if we were going to make it another week together let alone another month. Forget the years! Every time I would think that I'd had about all I could take, he would do something nice and I would forget all that had happened for a while. A lot of people would have called it quits and moved on. But, I did say for better or worse and I wanted some better! It was time. Early May of 2002 I had the opportunity to go to Atlanta Georgia for a week long conference. Rick said he would watch the kids and take care of things. I was still working at Baptist then and Baptist agreed to give me education days so I wouldn't have to use my vacation time. There were friends going from Bowling Green, so I rode down with them and shared a room with some of them. That made it cheaper for all of us!
Atlanta was hot in May! We stayed a few blocks from the conference center and could walk weather permitting. The conference people also provided shuttles. We had a good time and learned a lot.
I was homesick while I was gone. I called home two and three times a day. During my trip, Rick changed. I noticed his tone became more loving, and he was a different person than the one I left. hum. When I got home, he was waiting for me. He was all smiles. He took me out to eat.
He raised a large garden every year. I found out 3 days after I got home why he was so different. We got up on Sunday morning and he said "lets go to church". We had not done that as a family in our entire marriage. We went to mom's Sunday morning. She said "I really do believe Rick got saved in his garden last week, don't you?" Light bulb went on! That is what had happened. I asked him about it and he told me he was saved in his garden. I also asked him why he didn't tell me. He said he thought he did. I knew there was something different! He was not the same man I left at home when I got back! We went to church that day. They started a revival that night and we went back. Nick was saved in that revival. He joined that church. Rick wanted to but didn't.
We started going to different churches every weekend. One day we were at Ryan's and ran into Ray and Kathy there. They saw us first and spoke. We talked a few minutes, Rick told them about being saved. They invited us to Miller Hill the next day. We went. They treated us like family from the first visit. He joined there and was baptized in November. One of his best friends from growing up is a preacher. He baptized him. He also preached his funeral. He was also the first person Rick told about being saved when it happened.
Somewhere around 2004 we joined the farmers market in Brownsville. He grew such a big garden we needed something to do with it! That in itself was a chore! At the end of July of 04 I gave notice at Baptist that I would be leaving to work closer to home. I was in a management position and wanted to go back to patient care. I also was tired of driving 84 miles one way and paying $1.58/gal for gas! (boy don't I wish I could pay that now!) When I gave notice, we waited about a week to tell my staff. They were so upset that the chief nursing officer had me take off with pay for the remainder of my notice period. WOW! One of the reasons I was leaving was that I felt I was not doing the job to the best of my ability. The expectations from both sides was just overwhelming. And, more importantly, my home time was dwindling away. I needed to go back to what was the most important--my family!
To be continued......