Each month we talk with one of our readers, here’s what thinking mother Melissa Uchiyamaof Tokyo, Japan has to say.
I wrote Motherwit for Brain, Child’s Special Issue for Parents of T(w)eens. I do not think of myself as a funny writer, and to be on that page was a thrill. There are many essays I’ve loved over the years; I think I was one of the very early subscribers. Like so many of us, Brain, Child turned me on to work — and she remains a favorite essay writer (and a very lovely person, to boot).
My own story continues. I’ve had more grueling surgery, more chemotherapy, many more difficult moments. My hair has fallen out, I’ve needed blood transfusions, and my weight dropped even more. My body has had a much harder time enduring chemotherapy since Ilana’s birth. It’s as if the pregnancy protected me against its worst effects. But at least for the time being, the treatment appears to be keeping the cancer at bay. As for what the books and doctors say, my prospects for old age are a long shot. Still, I’m not big on statistics or bleak prognoses. I had a beautiful baby against all the odds, and after that, I believe anything is possible.
Some forms of communication transcend that which can be spoken or written. Such is the ability of love’s intimate expressions: to say a thousand things more than the poet or the essayist, in a more sublime manner. That enduring love which unites two hearts finds its most poignant expression in the kiss, the caress, and conjugality itself, and brings its most complete mutual understanding in the attendant unity that makes a man and a woman virtually one flesh. ~ Achieving a Celesstial Marriage, pg. 78
Soon after surgery, amniocentesis results came in: we had a little girl, completely healthy. My survival was now more important than ever so I elected to go ahead with chemotherapy, though I asked my husband a hard question: what if I didn’t make it in the long run—did he still want this baby? Absolutely.
From a co-worker: “How come nobody in the kitchen knows what the hell I’m saying? Don’t they understand English?” They are trying. Every time their phone rings, a heart freezes in dread of your judgment.
In saying all of this, I am not trying to negate your feelings at all. I know they are very real and very strong and very disturbing for you. For that I am truly sorry. But from what I have read, I also see a lot of selfishness that is not allowing you to dig deep enough to do what needs to be done to fix this. Do you want it to get better or is wallowing in self-pity just easier and more fulfilling? Make a choice and then make it happen.
I have many clients where the wife is the “softer” personality and they often feel like they never have the chance to even voice their thoughts and feelings because their husband jumps in with a rebuttal or correction or whatever and it just shuts her down further. If you would like to work toward providing an emotionally safe place for your wife you might consider letting her know you plan to listen to her better and not interrupt or correct or try to change her perceptions. It’ll be tough, but this is something that can open the lines of communication and allow some emotional connection to re-occur. You could also invite her to share her feelings in writing with the promise that you will hear them out and not “punish” her in any way for them even if they are painful to you. Many times written conversation is especially helpful for such difficult discussions!
I know that despite what you may have done to cause additional pain in your marriage, we all tend to do the best we can given all the context of our life. Unfortunately no one but our Heavenly Father knows what all goes into the decisions we make in a given moment.
You know what people are not understanding,
I own a few hearing clinics and the cheapest hearing aid I can buy from my well known manufacturer is $375 and that doesn’t include anything or any telephone program, they don’t work together… they are crap hearing aids.
I buy my high end hearing aids for $2750 and this is PER hearing aid.
I owe my mother an apology. In high school, when it was time to choose electives, she wanted me to choose Spanish. She had changed her mind. She had, by then, put herself through college. An educated woman, working to remind herself every day that she was nothing to be ashamed of. I was a rebellious teenager. I knew what it meant to her, and I chose German.
For what are gold and lands to one who is wedded to an untractable, capricious, unreasonable, ill-tempered man, who will rarely listen to the voice of reason, and for whom one will often be forced to blush painfully, and feel uneasy whenever he opens his lips? Such a man also, uniformly, endeavors to uphold his consequence by contradicting his wife on all occasions, because he will not have persons think that she possesses any influence over him. And on the other hand, do not marry an ill-governed, uncontrolled, excitable, and nervous woman, even if her lips are formed like Cupid's Bow, her eyes outshine the stars, and her complexion resemble milk and roses, while her features are as faultless as those of the Venus de Milo.
I understand that they way things are now, it is not easy for dispensers. I have several degrees and worked in the non-profit sector and I knew that If I though about all the education that I have versus what I made, it would drive me crazy. I wanted to help people and that I have done. I have several friends that have PHD’s and do not make huge income and they are at peace with the field they choosen.
The way technology is at today, the Aud. D. may be in the category of degrees that are not going to earn the recipent a lot of money, is just a fact of life. From what I have heard from some Audilogist, they love what they do and want to help people and this is a great way to look at it.
There is nothing wrong with earning a decent living doing what you love, but there is no excuse to take advantage of people who have a medical need. Please, I’m not saying all Audiologist do this, most of the fault is with the big six companies and some audilogist play a role too in keeping people in silence because they cannot afford the cost of hearing aids.