My Birthday: A Celebration & A Fight

by Sami

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sami cone sunshine

Today is my birthday.

As I begin my 38th year of life, I find myself in a much different place than I may have imagined just a year ago.

This time last year, we had just moved into our new home and were navigating the news of my Father-in-law’s brain tumor.

Needless to say, the word ‘normal’ had exited our vocabulary.

I wish I could say things got easier…but they didn’t.

My FIL passed away on August 26, 2012, which sent us all into a very unknown territory, especially my husband. We entered a phase of our marriage that was very foreign to both of us.

We knew we were being ugly to each other – verbalizing exactly that on a daily basis – yet could not put an end to it.

It was like living in a bad movie every day.

Not only was this difficult emotionally, but it was even more challenging to me mentally. I simply could not wrap my head around how we had ended up in this place.

In fact, I had always wondered why couples who went through tragedy together, more often than not, separated from each other rather than drawing closer together.

Now that we were living through our own tragedy, it became all too real to me.

The immense uncertainty, the raw emotion and the sheer exhaustion seemed insurmountable.

Even more challenging for me was the fact that we’ve always been marriage mentors, helping others in predicaments like ours. Both my husband and I came from divorced families and were determined not to have our marriage end up the same way.

How then, did we end up on the other end of the spectrum?

Let me pause here to say one thing: NO MARRIAGE IS IMMUNE TO ATTACK.

By no means did I think we had a perfect marriage, but I certainly never thought our marriage would take the turn it did in the last year.

While I one day hope to share more details for the sake of erecting guardrails that help prevent others from traveling down the same road, I’m just not at that point right now.

I can say that I remain confident that God is in control and that His Holy Spirit within me is strong enough to see me through this victoriously.

Mind you, I don’t feel victorious or confident right now. But just like I tell my kids, we can’t wait until we feel like doing things to move forward.

So as I embark on my 38th year of life, I do so with total surrender.

I surrender what I thought was important and now re-consider and re-commit to what is truly of value in life.

I don’t know what tomorrow holds; none of us do. In fact one of my favorite verses (and one of the first that I found as a 25 year old new Christian) was Matthew 6:34:

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

So I cannot tell you what will happen tomorrow, but I can promise that today I will do my best to celebrate and fight: celebrate who God created me to be and fight for what He destined me to become.

Thank you for celebrating and fighting with me today.

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Jaime Guthals July 18, 2013 - 8:07 am

You have been a blessing to me, Sami, over the last several months and I will continue to pray for you, and that God will use this. When we feel that life is out of control, remember that God is in control. God will use this for good.

jackie kendall July 18, 2013 - 7:30 am

Sami…this blog was the best birthday gift you could ever GIVE MY SOUL…I have prayed and cried and prayed and cried and struggled…and Jesus gave me this post to remind me that “The Start is the PROMISE of the FINISH.” Girlfriend…you are an extraordinary follower of Jesus…and Momma Kendall has never been prouder of you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Alisa Dellinger July 18, 2013 - 6:36 am

Sharing that you two are normal and are going through adversity shows strength and courage. For people being able to at look a friend or acquaintance that you feel “has it all” and actually be able to relate to their pain or struggle will help others more than you know.

Mary July 18, 2013 - 5:46 am

Praying for you….and I understand. My mother in law’s battle with cancer and her eventual death was a time in our lives that grew and challenged us. God is faithful, Sami. I am so happy you know that and can fight. Hugs to you.

Tiffany July 17, 2013 - 11:02 pm

Wow, beautifully written. Thank you for sharing that today. Happy Birthday!

sami July 17, 2013 - 11:26 pm

Thanks so much Tiffany – I truly appreciate you taking the time to read this and share those sweet words!

Alicia Holman July 17, 2013 - 10:57 pm

Praying for you tonight Sami and hoping your day was blessed in so many little ways today. I know there is someone out there that needs the words you wrote today. In His Love, Alicla

sami July 17, 2013 - 11:28 pm

Allcia – you said what I was thinking…I truly pray God uses every ounce of what I’m going through not only for His glory and to strengthen our family, but to somehow speak to others who think no-one else is struggling the way they are… God bless you.

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