Monday, July 09, 2007

How to Make Love Work

To those who read this regularly, you know that I am not by nature a social person. As they say, however; opposites attract, and Jesse is very social. He loves groups of people, parties and everything that goes with it. Because of my RA, we've spent much of the last couple of years hibernating at home. We don't go out; we don't see friends; they don't come over, etc. It's been hard on Jesse, but with the move to the new house, and my conscious decision to stop waiting for the RA to go away and start living life in spite of it, we are making strides to be out and about again. We've suddenly uncovered friends we haven't really talked to much for awhile. I'm letting Jesse plan our social schedule, and the summer is filling up quickly. This Friday we're going to a couple's apartment to hang out and play board games. Saturday we have a housewarming party in the afternoon and a 50th wedding anniversary in the evening. Sunday we're going to church with his cousins and then out for brunch. After all of this socialization, I will be retreating to my house, locking the doors and hiding from the world to recharge my batteries.

How to Make Love Work
by Michelle McKinney Hammond is a fun, enjoyable book about love from dating all the way through marriage. It's written tongue-in-cheek as a technical manual, so there are references to the Manufacturer (God) and the Manufacturer's Manual (Bible) along with other humorous tidbits throughout the book. But for its fun writing style, the book is filled with fantastic tips on how to improve your relationships. Hammond starts with getting yourself right before entering into a relationship, moves on to how to pick the right Man, continues through engagement and the wedding and finally into marriage. The tips for dating are on the money, but as a married woman, I especially enjoyed the sections on marriage. She uses the gifts of the spirit from Galatians and the Love guide from 1 Corinthians 13 to detail how each person needs to be in a relationship for it to work. The book is geared toward women, but there is a lot that a man could benefit from reading as well. I've been memorizing several of the verses she included, and I've been using the tips as well. Occasionally the humorous "manual" speak falls a little flat, but that's a small point on an otherwise fabulous book. Hammond has an enormous amount of wisdom to share, and this book exemplifies it. I'm giving this book to an engaged friend of mine to read next.

The last few weeks have been tough ones. I'm not handling the weaning off of prednisone well, and the pain has been getting me down. I get so frustrated when I'm not able to do all of the things that I want to, and I end up feeling like a failure. I pushed myself all of last week and ended up in bed for most of yesterday. (Doctor just called: he upped my prednisone intake to 10 mg and gave me a new prescription for vicodin) Sometimes I just want to throw my hands up in the air and scream to God that this is NOT the life I had planned. But then I remember all of the blessings in my life that I never would have thought of asking for, and I know that I wouldn't change it. I just pray that the doctor can find the right dosage and mixture of medicines that will let me function well. And a day without pain would be wonderful too.

Today's picture of of Mia on her path. Mom and Jeff planted some flowers in a wild area in their yard. They have several acres with a path mowed around the perimeter. Mia picked this wooded alcove for her own, so Jeff painted a sign saying "Mia's Path", and she couldn't be prouder.