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A Woman Beyond

In our small group this week someone challenged us to say a compliment to our spouse impromptu. I said something nice yet paled compared to what she said. Normally I would have a much better quick wit but it broke when Caleb died. She deserves much more.

She does so much around the house to make it home while working a full-time job and shuttling Madi to various activities. She makes menus, shops for necessities, and prepares most of our meals. Yes, those things are wonderful and she has done it for 28 years. Many of you could say something similar.

What most do not see makes her special. When we fostered kids, she loved them and cared for them. Donna cared for other peoples’ children in our home even when they were peeing on our walls, cutting carpet, hoarding food, throwing tantrums, getting sick. When someone lost their job or was ill, she would make sure they had what they needed.

When Caleb died, she immediately worried about Madi’s heart and how we reacted when the police told us the news. When some dear friends came that day to be with us, she was trying to ensure their comfort. Would you worry over friends upon learning your son died? I could not work on the eulogy or pictures. Thankfully, she handled it for me. She consistently places others’ needs above her own.

Donna sometimes doubts her effectiveness as a wife and as a mother. I reassure her. She is beyond adequate. She loves beyond we understand. She plans beyond the needs. She cares beyond the average. Her passion for family keeps us all moving forward.

— (edited to add the following Feb. 14, 2022) —

I doubt many understand how difficult parenting becomes after losing a child. The brain shuts down easily. There is little energy to do activities. Even board games or fixing a proper dinner can be too much. Other activities to satisfy our daughter’s need for social interaction are much harder. However, Donna pushes herself so all these needs are met.

Lately, the demands on Donna’s time have been pushed harder. My foot surgery had me completely incapacitated for a week and severely limited for over another five weeks. I have several more weeks before I can contribute to all the household chores again. Donna has graciously picked up my slack, doing the chores I cannot plus her own, and assisting with my care.

I am blessed to have such a loving and self-sacrificing partner. I love you, Donna!

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