AN OPEN LETTER TO MY FUTURE HUSBAND
Dear Future Husband,
There were many days as a young girl when I wondered if you existed. When I wondered who you were and what you were doing and how I would ever meet you. There have been many nights when I prayed for you, asking my Prince of Peace about you. He didn’t say much, but He held my hand and danced with me through it all.
There came a time when I began to seriously doubt a future husband existed. Not just as a possibility, but the likelihood. Through tears and then acceptance, I seriously thought about being single for the rest of my life. Though my heart still dreamed of you, I accepted the idea of being single as a strong possibility.
I AM CHRONICALLY ILL
Why? Because I am chronically ill. So often I’ve heard other chronically ill girls and women wonder if a guy could ever love someone who is so sick and dependent and unable. But you know what? That was never the part I doubted. I didn’t doubt that someone could love and be willing to marry someone who is chronically ill. I didn’t doubt that love was possible through God’s grace.
It was me I doubted. How could I ever marry you, knowing all the pain and burden that my illness would bring to you and any children we had. Lyme disease is known to pass from a person to their spouse and children. How could I ever do that to anyone?
I watched many couples and mothers and wives struggle to make things work in the midst of chronic illness. But they didn’t have a choice. They didn’t know beforehand. I do. I know. Those women do an amazing job, but if I could avoid putting such difficulty on others, shouldn’t I?
CHRONIC ILLNESS ISN’T EASY TO UNDERSTAND
I also really want a husband who understands me, and illness is something that isn’t easy to understand unless you’ve had personal experience with it. At the very least, as a caregiver. And I haven’t met many guys who have that.
Perhaps those were odd thoughts for a fifteen-year-old girl, but illness makes you think about things no one should have to worry about. Eventually, stuff happened to make me realize marriage might still be an option — God is pretty amazing, and I can leave it in His hands.
So I’m going to keep hoping. I don’t know how or when I’ll meet you. But until then, I choose to trust a God who has written much more impossible love stories.
YOU ARE NOT ALONE
This wasn’t very conclusive, was it? Mostly, I just asked questions. But here’s the thing: while I don’t have the answers yet, I suspect I’m not the only one with these questions. For those girls wondering how in the world chronic illness and romantic relationships coincide, I want you to know that you are not alone in those questions. It’s why I wrote this. Remember that God is in control. While wondering about your Prince Charming, throw yourself into the arms of your Prince of Peace.
*First published February 2019 at sgwilloughby.com. **Republished with permission.
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Author and Chronic Joy® Contributing Writer
Sara is the author of He’s Making Diamonds: A Teen's Thoughts On Faith Through Chronic Illness and host of the annual Diamonds Conference for chronically ill Christians. She loves to write and adventure - be it a new board game with her family, trying a weird food, or diving into a fantasy book. Sara is a TCK, a Lymie, and a Young Life Leader.
S. G. Willoughby
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