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September 20, 2014 / danaemckee

A Good and Perfect Love Story, Chapter 19 – Over Again? Part a

FossiePa&Allie  FossieMa&Allie AaronCorrieAlliebaby

When we got our first little foster baby, we also got sleep deprivation. Our youngest, Barnabas, was seven years old, so it had been that long. The nap-when-you-can lifestyle returned with a yawn, a baby on the hip, and the kids and dog in tow. We loved caring for Allie, and church friends, work friends, and family were excited with us that we had this new baby in our home. Roger’s mom was very sick, but she was happy for us too.

One of the first weekends we had our new little one, we jumped into the car to take her to meet Grandma Dorothy. Our car broke down, sadly, in South Carolina on the way to Royston, Georgia, where Dorothy had recently gone to a rehab facility. The kids and I sat  at a fast food place along Highway 85 for a couple of hours after the tow truck came to take the car. Roger had driven separately in his company car and was already with his mom.  As soon as he could he rescued us from the Burger King and give us a ride back home.

  CorrieBarnGrandmaDorothy'sfuneral  RogerBarnGrandma'sgrave

Dorothy passed away in August. What sad news for Roger and for the kids. It was a blow; a first terrible brush with death for Aaron, Corrie, and Barney. It was so hard to know that Roger’s mom, our Grandma Dorothy, was gone.  She had put up a grand battle against the last enemy, Death.  My main feeling was relief that she was no longer sick; she was with the Lord and suffered no more.  But seeing Roger grieve, and the kids…  It was difficult. Painful even now to look back at these photos.

Ginger1994visit  BenMom1994visit 

Funny how life goes from this to that – birth to death – grief to hope…  We decided we would not change the ticket we’d bought for me to travel to go see the kids.  So, a day or two after Dorothy’s service I flew to California to see our Ben and Ginger, and to meet Ben’s girlfriend, Robin.  I stayed in their home, and they made me very comfortable. It was a good visit with them all. Ben worked and surfed and took time to show me his favorite beaches up and down the coast.  I talked about the importance of marriage and about him following the Lord’s rule in his life. He listened. Soon after I got back home to NC, Ben called to say a wedding was planned for the next spring.

That fall, 1994, God put me and Roger on the same team, united like we had never been before. But first, we nearly destroyed this marriage of ours once again. Just heading into our forties, we had grown apart somehow in all the busyness of life. He had been lashing out in raging spurts… big, huge blow-ups about every three to six months. These explosions were short-lived but pretty damaging…

Roger’s focus, his whole trajectory was living and breathing his work.  Grappling with deadlines and people issues, customers, accounts payable, route guys, equipment failures, contests, and hiring and firing while trying to satisfy multiple bosses – just to name a few things – he used nearly all his gifts during fifty-plus hours per week at work. Roger did save a bit of himself for us now and then, and continued taking his turn teaching his fifth graders their Sunday School lessons at church.

Depositing his weekly paycheck into our joint checking account, Roger totally trusted me to manage the finances and all the rest.  I worked non-stop at our home, managing there – dishes, laundry, writing checks for the bills, homeschooling the kids, clothing and doctoring them, cooking, cleaning, training…  caring for our kids and the sweet baby guests the Lord sent.

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