When Intimacy Is Sacrificed for Healing {Love Should Not Suffer}

Sometimes one must sacrifice bed space for heart space in order for healing to be possible.

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When this happens to a husband and wife, the bedroom can be a very lonely place. It’s dark and cold and silent.

In the dark is where I feel the coldness in the bed where he usually lays. Palpable coldness that envelopes my entire being. Just coldness.

In the dark is where I don’t hear his breathing next to me like I used to when we both used to lay inches apart. No other heart beating to the air in the room. Just silence.

In the dark is where I remember the intimacy struggles we had ~ because of a simple surgical procedure gone wrong by a careless doctor after I gave birth to our daughter twenty years ago ~ which were never completely resolved before this chronic illness became our bed partner. Pain on top of pain.

It all leaves me so silent.

In the dark, I feel so lonely. I miss my husband who has loved me more than any other person has in a way no other person can… because he chose me to love. And he loves me well. In the dark, I focus. I can’t see… but I focus. I begin to see… I see the sacrifice my husband makes for me to move towards healing.

Then is when I focus on the Other who chose to Love me, Who sacrificed for me. In the dark is where I am overcome with the peacefulness of God reminding me He is my forever healer as the tears of missing my earthly love fall heavily down my face.

Love is lost with every tear, but replaced with every breath.

Then I am thankfully in focus again. Thankful that my God takes care of me and has given me a beautiful soul on this earth to take care of me and I of him.

And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. ~ Colossians 3:14 ESV

My husband takes care of his wife and that is no easy task as any wife knows, because life is hard and marriage is hard. We must work at it for many reasons to a beautiful outcome. He hugs me carefully when my body pain is at a high with this Fibromyalgia; he sleeps in another room to allow me the possibility of true restorative sleep to help me heal, he lifts things, he carries things… he eases my burdens. He loves me like Christ loves The Church – His own.

When chronic pain or illness is the other bed partner, both husband and wife need to sacrifice and both need to remember Love always comes first. It can effect every single part of life… finances, careers, child care, household care, family fun times and recreation, socializing, and intimacy… but in the end of the “this-life” rope from which all those things dangle is Love holding it all together. In the end is… Love. Always Love.

Love canceling out the pain, and the coldness, and the silence, and the dark.

For without Love, nothing else matters.

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. ~ John 1:5 ESV

~ Heather

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22 thoughts on “When Intimacy Is Sacrificed for Healing {Love Should Not Suffer}

  1. Joy Lenton says:

    Heather, this is so beautifully written and poignant. My heart and home-life echo these thoughts. Illness and sacrifice to help one another heal has resulted in exactly the scenario you describe. What a gift our spouses are to us and what a Saviour to help us see their servant-heart even as we mourn the close night sharing given up in love! Thinking of you both with empathy and sympathy. Much love. xox <3

    Liked by 1 person

    • Heather Mertens says:

      It isn’t easy is it Joy? But the Lord is with us as we know. I’m grateful for all those in my life who try to understand and help. My daughter also does. She has much pain of her own, so she can empathize. We help each other. :)

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Susan Irene Fox says:

    Intimacy: a loving personal relationship with another person; the quality of being comfortable, warm or familiar.

    Heather, though many of us define intimacy in a variety of ways, I’ll bet you have intimacy with both God and your husband. Maybe seeing through a different lens means it isn’t sacrificed at all.

    Many of us feel the need for touch, for affection, yet for one reason or another, do not have it. God has seen fit to bestow upon us intimacy in other ways.

    Bless you, sweet sister. <3

    Liked by 1 person

  3. joanneviola says:

    Heather, it is beautiful that our God knew the perfect husband for you & met your needs. May God continue to bless you both, in your marriage, with each other & with Him. May God bless your husband for loving you deeply as Christ loves His Church. Blessings!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Heather Mertens says:

      Thank you, Joanne. Our marriage certainly isn’t perfect, but I trust God with it just like everything else. Thankfully I learned that it is The Lord I must trust for every single part of my life. He knows better after all. ;)

      Like

  4. Planting Potatoes says:

    good read – I can relate – if only temporarily, as my wife broke her arm so severely, they couldn’t even put a real cast on it – and it has meant that she has not been able to sleep in bed since the end of January…only sitting up in her recliner downstairs – but it has also meant that I have to be very careful in hugging – which means I don’t get the hug I am used to having every morning since we’ve been married……

    Liked by 1 person

    • Heather Mertens says:

      I saw in FB that your wife was down and out; I hope she is healing well. Oh how you must really miss that hug. It’s hard when the physical aspects – of any kind – are missing in a love relationship. I hope you both get that tight hug soon. And a few more at Disney. ;)

      Liked by 1 person

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