Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Lady's a Champ

You've heard from Bethany a lot over the past week or so. I wanted to give you my perspective. Things have been a little confusing for me. Life has been difficult for the two ladies in my life, and I'm not sure how to react to it. Those of you who know me, know that I am guided by reason rather than emotion more often than not. Sometimes I feel guilty for approaching our problems with logic, staring them down with cold, hard facts. But that's just my approach.

It's been interesting to observe Bethany experience a new aspect of motherhood. Especially in contrast to my response to the Bird's illness. Promise's sickness really has troubled Bethany, while my reaction to the sick child has been one of compassionate indifference. Yes, I feel terrible that my kid isn't feeling well. However, I can't help but think "Hey, kids get sick. She'll get over it." Does that make me a cold, detached jerk? Or just a level headed Dad?

Promise does seem to be improving, though she barfed on my pillow this morning during a coughing fit. I'm no doctor, but her lungs don't seem to be rattling much anymore. Bethany must be feeling better too because she's back at work today. Between her own sickness and concern for her child, she has been so worn out of late. Once again she is worried that she is falling behind in school, but frankly, I question her logic.

Let's look at the facts about my amazing spouse. She is in her last semester of a two year, intensive training program. In those two years she has faced some unique challenges, most of which have not been faced by any of her classmates. For one, her husband has a strange job with weird hours that tends to take him out of the city at inconvenient times. Not to mention that when he is home, he is useless in the kitchen.

The obvious challenge was having a baby just before her second year of schooling began. Nobody else in her class did that. Not to mention the nine months of pregnancy that preceded the baby. During those nine months, she was out of the country for 5 weeks for a trip to North America. She suffered another set back when she was diagnosed with a herniated disc and ordered to stay in bed for a significant period of time.

Promise is our first child. Everything is new to Bethany and I. Each day brings a new learning curve and a new level of exhaustion. In 2009 alone, Promise has been afflicted with an earache (which lasted several weeks) and pneumonia. Bethany then caught the respiratory infection herself, causing her to miss work and classes.

Each of these circumstances brought a fresh wave of discouragement and strife. I couldn't begin to tell you the number of times Bethany has wondered out loud how she would finish the next assignment on time. I understand this question, but my experience tells me that it is a dumb one. She always finishes on time. She even does some of the group projects by herself because her lifestyle sometimes makes it difficult to partner with her classmates.

Despite all of these challenges, Bethany is on track to graduate the academic portion of the program along with her class in June. I'm willing to bet that she'll have pretty good grades too.

Folks, this is an astonishing woman. All I know to do in the face of her discouragement is to continue to point out her ability to overcome adversity. Yes, the Lord has been incredibly faithful to both Bethany and myself. But each and every time Bethany had a choice. She could give in to the circumstances, or she could rise above them. She always chooses to persevere, and I love her for it.

Some of our readers have commented on these pages a hundred times. Perhaps others of you have never commented before. If you're reading this today and you haven't commented in a while, why don't you leave a quick note and just tell my wife you think she's awesome. Because she is.


Here are a few pics of the Bird, including the new ducky bath that arrived from Bethany's parents recently and the Peruvian finger puppets my parents gave her for Christmas.


Heidi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Heidi said...

Bethany and Tim,

I was just sitting here thinking about going to bed but I thought i would send some love before i do.

I am remembering back to your group home on Lanarch - Bethany, you never ceased to amaze me how you would face the task of loving some of the most challenging kids in the city with grace and perseverance. You would not let their hurt stop you from loving them, as exhausting and challenging as it was. Having visited you and thankfully reading about your life in Davao, those days seem like a drop in the bucket.... and yet your dreams have come true and now you are loving on your own Promise. It is astounding to me however, that in spite of such a glorious gift (which many would say ok i got what i wanted, thanks God and stop what they were doing) you have been so determined to do all that the Lord put in front of you to do.

When I wonder what the future will hold in my own life, all I have to do is think about you and your life and know how faithful God is... however, I am also challenged, to persevere, keep believing and keep choosing to walk on in that which God has put in front of me. You have inspired me to do that.

So my dear dear friend - when you are so super tired and feel like you can't go on, and can't imagine another possible minute - just remember - it is Christ in You that is the HOPE of glory, He will carry you through and as you have lived that out you have blessed and inspired so many of us.

Looking forward to fun games and just chillin' when you come our way.

Much Love

Heidi said...

one more thing - I am sending you the Kate quote of the semester...
"It's going to be good in the end, it's just tears and music right now"

Emilie said...

Hi Bethany,

Even though we've never met, you're still an inspiration to me! Hubby and I love your blog. I've had babies and been able to focus solely on that, and let me tell you, it was tough! That you've been in school in a different country, been sick, had a baby and are still doing great is just incredible and amazing. You're doing a great job!! Promise has an awesome mommy and an awesome daddy, too!

Anonymous said...

Just wanted you to know that both of you can't be basket cases at the same time. She needs your low- key manner to help balance her roller-coaster emotions.(I know where you're coming from) Hang in there and just keep praying for and loving your girls.
I love ya, too
Mom Mc

Anonymous said...

Just wanted you to know that both of you can't be basket cases at the same time. She needs your low- key manner to help balance her roller-coaster emotions.(I know where you're coming from) Hang in there and just keep praying for and loving your girls.
I love ya, too
Mom Mc

Anonymous said...

Didn't mean to repeat myself...sorry. Guess it needed reiterating.
Mom Mc

Rebecca Nicolson said...

Hi Tim & Bethany,
You don't know me but I'm Lois's sister and I have heard wonderful things about you for some time. I enjoy stalking your blog (as Lois calls it) from time to time because I love both the way you both write and how God works in your lives. Thank you for being honest, open and lovely people that share what you are going through. You have been an encouragement to me.

Anonymous said...


Tim is right, you are a champ!

I have loved reading all of your posts lately and thank you for continually sharing your heart!
I often think of you when I am doing my school work, thinking that you are also in such an intense program, but are doing so much at the same time. Your peers are truly blessed to have you as a classmate!
I loved your story of Ruby! It made me miss labour and delivery. I thought of how much you have learned and grown in the past couple of years and yet you are still the caring, thoughtful B who brings gifts to Bel though you couldn't be there for the birth.
Bethany, you continue to humble and inspire me. When I am questioning God's timing and plan for me, I often remember our chats and think of your Promise! And am reminded how much Jesus loves us and is in control!

I love all the pics of your beautiful bird! She smiles so much! (of course she does, she lives with you two!)
Will continue to pray for you three!
Blessed am I to call you friend, love Kate

Thanks for encouraging the comments and kicking me in the behind to write! Kate

Anonymous said...

Dear Tim,
I sincerely echo all that the others have said about Bethany. What I can add is how your praise and love for her has blessed me.

You know that our hearts are very concerned that married couples work together to bless each other and strengthen their marriage. We are very heartened to know that on top of everything else you are careful to guard your relationship with each other.

May God continue to pour out his grace on you in your times of need. He has prepared you for this, and now he is faithfully preparing you for the next thing!

Love you lots,

Aunt Sylv

Anonymous said...

What a thoughtful post Tim! You two are such a great pair and compliment each other so well. I continue to be amazed and humbled at all that you both have accomplished. You are both such a tremendous inspiration to me. Bethany you are probably one of the strongest gals I know and even though that strength comes from the Lord it takes a special heart to take what God has given and run with it in the face of such adversity, sickness and lonliness. You are a modern day hero and I love you so much.
"They that wait upon the Lord will renew their strength, run and not get weary, walk and not faint..."
Bless you babe, love Nicole

drbob said...

Bethany, you are AWESOME!!!!

and, I miss you.



Heather said...

I know I'm super behind in replying to this post but I wanted to add my love as well. You guys both are a tremendous example to me of persistence. Persistence in your marriage, in loving, following, and obeying God, and persistence in parenthood. Promise is SO lucky to have you as her mom and dad. I'm blessed to have you as friends.

Miss you much!

Anonymous said...


I just sat down to Sheri's computer as it was online and it was on this page of the blog. I smiled as I read Tim's blessing and encouragement towards His lovely wife...and then he opened the door for anyone to bless and encouraged her...How can I pass up the oppurtunity!

Bethany, I always think of you as the proverbial :) Proverbs 31 woman...You seem to always have it together evcen when you are talking about how you don't the thing that stands out to me right now is your ability to take the mundane and unlovely and make it beautiful. When approacing your home in Vancouver on couldn't help but notice the effort that was placed into the front yard. Here was a plain house on a plain street, but once inside the gate it came just wasn't OK for YOUR yard to not always be improving! When you step inside the house...what was supposed to be a 'group home' turned out to be a 'couple's home' with children being care for in it. Then the children...Your ability to treat them as if they deserved all the love in the world...whether that be by teaching them what is right or wrong or dressing them in the finest linens you could find...We noticed! Love you!