Sunday, October 3, 2010

The {difference} between men and women...

I know I've told you a million times how amazing my husband is.
Just incredible.
I can't describe in words what an amazing, godly man he is.
He loves me so well.
He is my best friend.
I don't know if I told you, but he was supposed to start an Army school on September 13th.  That's right, my birthday and baby Briar's birthday.  The nice people at the course heard his story and told him they were going to push him to the next class, which doesn't start until November.  Until then, he only has to check into work each day.  It's an amazing schedule for us.  It's like paternity leave.  :)

Just to be clear, in our almost five years of marriage, he has been deployed or gone almost half of it.  When he has been home, he has very busy jobs, often getting home much past 6 or 7pm every night. So to have this job right now, at this very crucial point in life, is so very special.  I feel like God just said, "You need some time to heal, to connect, to figure things HERE.  Take a break from your responsibility and process what just happened to you".  I mean, maybe I didn't hear that audibly, but I'm just saying, that's what it seems like he's saying :)
I would be lying to you if I didn't tell you that we are nothing alike.  We are so incredibly different. The way we process things, deal with things, and work through things.
Since I practice full disclosure on this blog, I'll tell you that my hubby and I decided to go to Christian couples counseling after we found out about Briar's diagnosis. We've only been a couple times, but it is amazingly helpful in understanding each other. I will tell you that we walk into counseling holding hands and hugging and we leave the same way. It's not as if we are having major problems and screaming at each other with the counselor as the mediator, in fact, quite the opposite.
When Brandon got home from his first 15 month deployment, in 2007, I thought it would be a good idea to go. We didn't, because we got busy and we really didn't have any 'problems'. When this came up, I thought it would be a good time to go. I feel like it's a better idea to go BEFORE there are major issues rather than AFTER. Not that I'm judging you if you waited, and now the issues are there, I think it's always beneficial to have a GODLY third party that can be involved. We definitely talk with our pastor as a friend, and he is amazing, but I don't want to pressure him to be a good listener and give us feedback, so for us, this is a great way to get some Godly thoughts on marriage.
The other day when Brandon and I were talking about Briar, he was explaining his mind to me. He said that "women are like spaghetti, and things wind all around in their minds, connecting to things all over the place and men tend to compartmentalize things. Briar has his own compartment in my mind, which I felt very emotional about in the moment.  Now, since it's not right in front of me, it's not as hard because it is in it's own compartment.". I interrupted him and told him that someone already wrote a book about that...a friend (Sydnea) mentioned this to me when we lived at Fort Bragg, but I never picked it up.  She told me the basic premise behind it though, and it seemed interesting.  At the time, however, I had only been married about a year, and I thought I knew all there was to know about my husband. HA.  Go ahead and laugh.  4+ years later I realize I will NEVER know all there is to know!
Anyway, the book itself is not important, other than the fact that I might take my time off to read it.

Basically what he was telling me was his mind doesn't travel to Briar every day.  When he told me that, I turned to him as if he just slapped me. I couldn't believe that he didn't think of our son every day, nor would he,...unless he intentionally brought it up in his mind.  I brought this up to our counselor because I thought maybe that was weird and he literally got out a model of the brain.  He explained to us that men process things in a way that allows them to be very logical much of the time.  Women tie into this small gland (which has a name that has escaped me and I don't want to sound silly and misquote) that ties into emotion.  We stay there.  So, for example, when I hear the song, "I'll fly away", I immediately think of the time when I had to say goodbye to Briar.  We had our ipod playing throughout our time in the hospital and I had a worship playlist playing. I have always liked that song.  Well, it just so happens that it was playing in the very moment that I was packing him into a basket and getting Brandon ready to walk him out of the room to meet the (nice) man from the funeral home.  It was the hardest moment of my life.   But what an appropriate song.  I couldn't have planned it better.

"Some bright morning when this life is o'er, I'll fly away

To a land on God's celestial shore, I'll fly away

When the shadows of this life have gone, I'll fly away

Like a bird from these prison walls, I’ll fly, (I'll fly away), away

I'll fly away, oh glory, I'll fly away (in the morning)

When I die, hallelujah by and by, I'll fly away

Oh how glad and happy when we meet, I'll fly away

No more cold, iron shackles on my feet, I'll fly away

I'll fly away, oh glory, I'll fly away 

When I die, hallelujah by and by, I'll fly away

Just a few more weary days and then, I'll fly away 

To a land where joy will never end, I'll, I'll fly away

I'll fly away, oh glory, I'll fly away (oh glory)

When I die, hallelujah by and by, I'll fly away 

I'll fly away, oh glory, I'll fly away (oh glory)

When I die, hallelujay by and by, I'll fly away

I'll fly away.... I'll fly away..... I'll fly away"
Jars of Clay Version

And I will always associate that song with that moment.  It isn't sad when I hear it now, but it definitely brings emotion into my mind, and makes me think of Briar.  When Brandon hears that song, it is still a song to him, that is separate from Briar.  He is a waffle. Briar has his own emotional compartment.  But other things that in my mind very OBVIOUSLY relate to Briar do not relate to Briar at all in his mind.

That is okay. But it is good to realize that God created us this way. DIFFERENT.  Brandon likes to say that God is fully emotional and logical.  Men are more logical and women are more emotional.  When God puts two people together in marriage, it is the picture of the way he is, when we unite. {Not to say that you are not complete if you are unmarried..not at all}  He likes to say that we can experience a more full picture of that when we unite and understand each other. :) Sweet guy.
Thought I would show you this picture in color....before showed it in b/w.  One of my sweet nurses Gabby took it...just grabbed my camera sitting on the side of the room. (Way to Go that we have a photo of these precious moments) Jess had gone home, since this was 6+hours after B was born. Gabby has a D80 at home, so she at least knew what was going on with the camera. She is also the one who made the plaster mold feet, so I especially love her :)  But...this was a very special moment. Before we gave him away in his physical form.  Funny, but not a coincidence that Brandon is wearing his Africa {one less orphan} shirt from our sweet friends the Sweeneys!!

BIZARRE...the way God created men and women.  But how thankful I am to have this man in my life. I just can't tell you.


  1. You have a wonderful husband Brooke!!! .... I almost commented on Brandon wearing the One Less shirt and how fitting it was- on your last post :) I'll have to look into that book! Matt and I had a conversation about how we process things differently after leaving a wedding on Sat. LOL.

  2. I have had a similar experience with my husband. I was 13 weeks pregnant when our baby stopped growing and I had a d&c. It has been 3 years now, but not too long ago, I heard him telling someone, "Yeah, we lost a baby too, but we didn't get all down and depressed, we just moved on." I whipped around and looked at him like he was crazy - he immediately he got this look of shock/surprise on his face. It was then that I realized that in my efforts to "remain normal & put on a happy face" that he had NO CLUE of the internal suffering I experienced and still feel at times when I think of our lost baby. My Aunt gave me a special ornament to hang on the Christmas tree in honor of my baby, and I love looking at it on the tree each year. I bet my husband doesn't even remember where it came from. Men are definitely different.