A Painful Year of Changes

Written by Heather Copple
Messy Marriage Team Writer

This past year has been hard. 

So much has happened and not all of it good. But then that is life. Thankfully, we don’t always have to like it. I know that I haven’t liked all the changes and I’m sure neither has my husband, Scott.

Let’s start with Scott’s side …

His workplace caught on fire. This caused a series of changes for Scott, which in turn caused a lot of stress for him as well. They had to move to a temporary place, then move to another temporary place, and then finally back to their original shop.

They had to try to salvage any equipment, which meant tearing them down, cleaning them, and hoping that they would work (fire warped some of the pieces). They had to figure out what was lost and what needed to be replaced. They had to build again the five finished doors that were supposed to go to clients. Scott’s hours changed, and changed, and changed. But there was also the waiting, not working, not knowing

Scott was stressed and still is

Luckily, God gave him a wife who took the crankiness and sadness in stride. I was Scott’s “safe place.” He could be whomever he needed to be and I would continue to be there for him. He would bite my head off, and drive me crazy being underfoot, when he wasn’t working. I would patiently hold my tongue and come up with fun things to keep him busy (Scott loves shopping, so he did grocery runs and errands).

I kept in mind that God had a reason for this and I just needed to be the physical embodiment of love and understanding that God had for Scott.

My life also has had its share of turmoil …

My depression acted up and my medical issues got worse. I had several biological family members that I’ve never talked to contact me this past year. And I’ve had to cut all contact with some of them and one of them has cut contact with me. Unfortunately the medical issues and family issues fed the depression and made it even worse. I have been hurting physically and emotionally most of the year.

I try hard to not let my stress affect my friends or family, but the stress affected Scott and our marriage. Again, God gave me a husband who took all of my problems with stride. 

Self Timer on the Hill 

Scott has held me as I cried my heart out over the family issues. He has fought with me about how worthless I think I am. He has helped support my decisions whether he agrees or not. He has advocated with the doctors about my care. He accepts that I have limits to my abilities and still does what he can to include me in activities. He tells me when I cross the line. I believe he does these things out of love for me. I believe that he fully understands me better than I do myself sometimes.

All of these issues have overlapped one another many times. These issues could have caused so many fights in our marriage and yet they didn’t. God guided my words and actions towards the man that I love. God blessed me in 1994 when I met Scott. I am thankful everyday.

This past year has been painful, but I can endure it all so long as I have God and Scott to guide, accept, and love me.

Photo by ingridtaylar

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  • Kimberly Green

    Thanks so much for sharing your heart and struggles, Heather. Simply being thankful and appreciative of our spouse is HUGE. Such a simple thing with such a big impact. Thanks!

  • Hannah @ Boots & Feet

    Thank you for sharing your story. Family relationships can be so complicated …

  • You are a brave woman, dear sister. And you are blessed with a loving husband. Thank you so much for sharing so honestly!

  • Thanks for sharing your story Heather. It brings to mind the scripture “i can do all things through Christ that strengthens me”. Praise God for His faithfulness.

  • Tyson Cooper

    It is very important to support your spouse in their times of difficulty. As the Bible says “neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord.” (KJV, 1 Corinthians 1:11) We are incomplete without each other. I too am grateful to have a spouse that loves and supports me in good times and bad. I hope that you have a better year this year.

  • May this year ahead be a healing season for you both …

  • Heather Copple

    Thank you. We hope so too.

  • Heather Copple

    I believe the same. Scott and I make a perfect pair when together. It is wonderful to have someone who really understands you.

  • Heather Copple

    Amen! Thankfully we all can reach out to God and know he is there with us. Thankfully he puts people in our lives who also help us with life.

  • Heather Copple

    Thank you. I truly feel blessed and appreciate all that God has given me. Without God we would all be lost.

  • Heather Copple

    Family can be messy and so I find myself waiting (patiently and not so patiently) for God to guide me. Thank you for your comment.

  • Heather Copple

    I try very hard to always show Scott how much he means to me everyday. God and Scott are what get me through some of the hardest moments. Thanks for commenting.

  • I will be sharing your story with a friend who battles anxiety and family issues. She has had to cut ties and has had ties cut, sounding similar to your situation. This Sunday, she will attend a family Easter dinner, at which her husband will be included for the first time in years — this event will hold more stress than it will freedom to enjoy, but it is a first step. Families do not always understand mental health struggles, nor do they always understand or support marriage struggles.

    Thank you for sharing.

  • We all say the vows, “For better or for worse,” and yet without God who can truly survive the “worse”? Thank you for sharing your inspiring story of how faith makes the difference, Heather. Blessings to you today!

  • Oh, Beth, my heart goes out to you. I think the hurt from family cuts extra deep because they are family, and we expect more and better from them. What a blessing your husband is, to be able to fall apart into his arms and have him support and comfort you. I hope things have mostly smoothed out at work for Scott, and will pray for you both.

  • Thanks for the compassionate response, Kim, but I can’t take credit for this incredible story. It’s from my team writer, Heather. She and her husband have really had it rough this year, and I’m so glad she was willing to share her story here. Thanks for praying for them and for coming by, my friend!

  • Oops, sorry Beth and Heather! Beautifully done, Heather!

  • Stacey Micklevitz

    Heather – I love the way you and Scott know how to support each other when times are tough. It takes a special sort of relationship to be so sacrificial (rather than selfish) in such areas. Great job on this post! 🙂