We were visited by the social worker the day after Jacob was admitted to the hospital to begin a course of ACTH to treat Infantile Spasms. She informed us of the challenges that parents of children with special needs face and indicated that many marriages are unable to survive these challenges.
This was not our fate.
But our relationship was tumultuous at times, especially in the beginning. He was 18 and I was 21.
He was working at a fudgery and I was working at an ice cream shop. After much crazy behavior in between, we married when he was 27 and I was 30. Within our first year of marriage, we bought our house and had our baby Matthew. Before our third year, we had our baby Jacob and seven months later, he was admitted to the hospital.
We did some growing up before Jacob but after Jacob, we grew together and for each other. Matt gave up drinking and I gave up bitching. Just kidding - that will never happen.
In the darkest days, when I could barely breathe, when I wished to God and to my grandparents who had passed to please, please heal Jacob, I had Matt. And he had me. I was in charge of the alcohol prep pads and band aids and he was in charge of the needles, syringes, and vials. I carried on if the injection wasn't perfectly delivered and he calmed me down.
We are so different from one another, which may give us a collective spectrum of coping abilities.
What is certain is that I would not be able to face our challenges if Matt didn't know when to push me forward, let me loose, step aside, or hold me back.