We are the fortunate ones. Marty and I are lucky to have the means, the time, the energy to make a life with chronic illness livable. I am grateful every day for our ability to live a semi-normal life. I am acutely aware of the wonderful people that have come into our lives over the last few years, people who have made a remarkable and tangible difference in our lives, people who are part of our lives today because of Marty’s illness and God’s serendipitous nature to whom we are always and forever thankful.
I am thankful for Marty’s caregivers. Erica, Nikkie, and Renae are at times like our daughters, at times they are like extensions of Marty, they are always more than just caregivers. My partner, my wife always made me whole; she always was another pair of eyes, ears, another heart, another mind who made me better than I am alone. I miss that part of Marty more than I ever thought. Erica, Nikkie and Renae fill part of that void. Erica makes sure I don’t go around dressed like the old hippie I am, Nikkie has the courage to tell me how I’m acting and Renae lets me be afraid and angry. They are all a part of our family, new daughters that make a difference in our lives.
I am thankful for Great and Wise and all of the people who work with him. He is the doctor who sets the standard for a faithful and caring provider and his staff emulates him. These people care for Miss Marty, they smile when they see her, the touch her, they talk to her, they recognize who she was and who she is, they treat us both like people. More than any group I know, from the nurses to the wonderful ladies who answer my phone calls, they have made our lives better, they have made my job of caring for Marty manageable. Great and Wise practices the art of medicine like a classic artist, with consummate love and passion.
I am thankful for my daughter’s boy Lyle and the insight of my daughter in finding him. Who knew? I am thankful my daughter had the wisdom to move past other men and find a one who knows how to love someone else, who is kind, who is attentive, and who has an actual job. I am thankful that I can trust him to be a true and willing partner to my daughter.
I am thankful for my grandson, now one year old. I have never seen a smile so pure and eyes so blue and perfect. When he walks, when he smiles, when he reaches his arms to you he reminds you of how beautiful life can be and he gives me assurance, every time I see him, that God is real. He is a gift, a gift from God, given to the care of my children who have been wonderful, doting parents.
There are so many, so many people. Our family, our children, and our friends who touch our lives daily; who are all active in our lives each and every day cheering and loving Marty. Their faith and loyalty move us forward each and every day.
Travelling our life, moving through our journey, getting to this part of our journey is nothing short of a miracle. For Marty to be here, with me, and for us to continue to grow together and strengthen our relationship is the most incredible part of our life. There have literally been hundreds of people who have been part of our trip and one way or another helped get us to this place. I know you all; I remember each of you.