Yesterday I made a painful decision, but one that I feel will be honouring God and my husband. It came to me so randomly that I think it must have been straight from God. I hesitated to commit myself to it, but felt that to keep it to myself would be sinning. Anyway, I’ll explain myself now.
I have been a vegetarian for twelve years now. When I was pregnant with Jenny, I read a book about vegetarian babies and children that reinforced my decision to keep my children from eating meat. Mike went along with it and didn’t complain much except about one issue – the issue of whenour kids could choose to eat meat. When Jenny was about eighteen months, Mike was eating chicken noodle soup and she was practically begging him to have some, so I decided then that she could have chicken – and felt like a total failure. Since then, I’ve sort of kept the kids from eating meat until they were two, and then only poutry (and fish, but I eat fish, too). I certainly got plenty of griping from other people about how silly it was that I wouldn’t let my kids eat meat, but I’ve always tried not to let it bother me. I finally decided a few weeks ago that I would let Jenny eat meat when she turns five – in another year. Yesterday morning when Mike was eating some bacon, he said that we would probably have to let Elias eat it at the same time – which was a very good point. He always wants to do everything his sister does and I know that if we kept him from eating it and let Jenny eat it, he just wouldn’t understand. The thought that came to my mind last night was that maybe it was not very submissive to be making this decision on my own. Some of it is for health reasons, but most of it is honestly because I find meat so gross – so I almost want my kids to feel the same way about it. So I told Mike during supper last night that from now on, it will be up to him when they eat meat for the first time. He agreed with me that they should at least be weaned before they eat it (big sigh of relief there), so Erik won’t be getting any very soon. I will almost certainly face some not very nice comments from people now that I’ve made this decision, but I’m willing to be honest and tell them the reason for it. Maybe it will open other hearts to changes in attitudes between husband and wife. I’m guessing that not many people have our particular situation happening, but I’m sure that there are other things that people clash about and that one should be submitting to the other on. After all, we are told to “submit to one another out of reverence for Christ” (Ephesians 5:21) and although we as wives are told specifically to submit to our husband, sometimes it is husbands who are not God-honouring on one issue or another. Regardless of who it is that needs to submit, we will live with so much more peace when we do submit to each other and refuse to live clashing against one another.
Perhaps part of the decision came about because Mike did something yesterday that he usually doesn’t like to do at all. His parents have a boat and were heading out to the lake after church. I felt like it might be nice for the kids to get to go on the tubes and have a boat ride. Mike isn’t big on boating, but he went with us, drove the boat when needed, and went with both of the kids twice on the tubes. Meanwhile, I was able to relax, take pictures and have a nice time watching my kids have a blast. We were out for three hours, which is a lot longer than we had originally planned for, and in the end the kids didn’t have a nap other than on the drive home, but it was such a great day. Mike’s part in that day made me feel like giving him a gift of sorts, and I think that is what this decision is.
As for my recuperation, I have been in quite a lot of pain the last few days. My pain meds are not working as well as they were, and I suspect that the scabbing in the back of my throat (yeah, I know – gross) is coming off and reforming, so I’m a bit raw because of it. I’ve lost at least eight pounds in the last week and people have even noticed that I look thinner. My face seems to thin out fast when I lose weight, so it’s quite obvious even when it’s not a large amount of weight. I’m basically living on scrambled eggs and tofu, water, the occasional smoothie, and popsicles. I did have half of a veggie chicken sandwich and four or five pieces of asparagus for supper last night – every bite hurt, but my stomach was so happy afterward. If my drugs are working, I have more options for food, but the more solid it is, the more it hurts to swallow. I’m just hoping that I’m able to eat normally by the end of this week, but there’s no telling whether I’ll be able to or not.