North to Alaska....
Thirteen and a half years ago, I married the man of my dreams. He and I were both young, but we thought love could conquer all. We were in for a huge testing of that love.
It began with my husband going off to basic training in the Air Force 11 days after our wedding. I was extremely lonely. After his training, I was able to join him on his next base assignment in Mississippi. While there, the military was not paying for our living expenses so we lived on practically nothing for 3 months. There were many weeks that went by that all we could afford was the .25 it took to call home (collect) and tell them all was fine here.
After this ordeal, we were shipped to our first real base assignment as husband and wife. We were going to Anchorage, Alaska. Ohhh, this was my husband's dream come true. He was so excited. I was just looking forward to getting established and making a home for us. Something happened between my husband and I and to this day, I don't know what it was. He drifted away from me. Our young love was being severely tested. I was thousands of miles away from my family and friends. And I became very lonely.
I didn't have anyone to confide in or share my joys as well as my sorrows with. I began to hate my life. I hated my husband. I hated Alaska. And I hated me. The worst thing I could've done, I did. I drifted away from the One who could carry me through this time...my Saviour. Instead, I grew despondent. The only source of joy I had was the weekly phone calls home to my mom and dad.
We did our time up there for 4 very long years. I was so excited to be getting out of the military and coming home. Our marriage was still intact, but hanging by the thin thread of "I won't get a divorce. My parents would be crushed" kind of thinking. So we stuck it out, and came home to Minnesota a different couple. There was lots and lots of healing to be done. Over time,I began to laugh again. The world looked brighter and happier. My relationship with the Lord took it's rightful place in my life. And I found new friends.
During this time, I became a CM consultant. I was required to do a "demo" album. I chose my Alaska pictures. I went into this album with a sense of dread. I still hated Alaska and what happened to us there. But as I started going through the pictures, creating the layouts and journaling, I found healing. I found out I did have some good times up there and perhaps even a smile or two came across my face. I realized we did make some real nice friends in the military. And I realized my husband and I did come through this testing. We became two adults. We weren't young kids anymore. We were two people who loved each other greatly and despite the turmoil and trouble, we stuck it out.
By the time I completed that album, I could remember Alaska without crying or deep sorrow. I was changed. Ever since that first album, my scrapbooking has been a source of encouragement and joy. When I struggle as a wife and now a mother of 3 young childen, I sit down with an album and work on some pages. And all the stresses float away and it is all replaced with a deep sence of joy and satisfaction.
Tomorrow at dMarie Daily: Your Baby Will Die..., by Rylin R.