I have been doing a lot of reflecting on my marriage lately. My husband’s dedication and love for me, his Fragile X carrier wife, and Josh, our son who is severely affected with Fragile X Syndrome and Autism, has been unwavering and simply amazing. Sometimes I get caught up in the day-to-day challenges and lose track of making sure he knows how important he is in my life….not just his paycheck, but HIM and what he adds to this family.
I overheard him ask my daughter, who by the way is also amazing, to try and get May 12 off (to hang with Josh) so that he could take me out for our anniversary. He’s amazing, not perfect – but hey, look at me with my imperfect X chromosome! We’ve been together for over 30 years and married 27 of those years. You may already know this, but we are defying statistics.
The divorce rate among families who are challenged with a child or children with disabilities is frighteningly high. Dr. Laura Marshak, author of Married with Special-Needs Children (co-authored with Fran Prezant), says “Many studies do point out higher divorce rates; for families with children with autism, there have been rates quoted as high as 85-90 percent.” I count my blessings that we are defying those statistics.
Over a year ago, my hubby was diagnosed with colon cancer. To say that I was paralyzed with fear is an understatement. Our family, suddenly and unexpectedly, had the potential of being rudderless. Life is so precious…..too precious to be taken for granted. But again, our family pulled together and did what had to be done. My daughter had recently graduated from college and put her career on hold to help with Josh. I found myself at the hospital advocating through the cancer care maze, and my “Strong Oak” (hubby’s Native American name) was lying in a hospital bed. After a major surgery and a brutal healing process, I am happy to say, to-date, he is defying another frightening statistic.
My point to writing this entry in my blog, is to remind myself and others who are defying statistics to stay aware of what is critical in our lives, nurture it and appreciate it…..at the same time we’re raising awareness and being a voice for our children with special needs. I knew I needed to remind myself when I went to bed at 1:00 a.m. one night last week, and my hubby said “Are you finished doing community service for the day?” I replied “Yes, and I’m exhausted.” He told me he loved me and kissed me goodnight. Amazing. I’m so blessed to have a husband who is a willing participant in our journey to defy statistics.