Fortunately, Faith was smart enough to obtain post secondary education. She first studied Early Childhood Education and later Office Administration. She has worked in both fields and enjoyed working with children the most.
She is going back to the working world come September 6th at a preschool nearby. We had planned for me to work and for her to follow her desire to be a full-time homemaker. But of course neither of us planned for me to get cancer and all the side effects that come with it and its treatment. Thankfully though, Faith has education and work experience on her / our side.
I happened to see a posting for the job, even though we weren't looking yet - we were going to figure things out after we knew how much care I would need through the fall. Faith applied and was offered the job beating out other candidates. The stipulation though was for Faith to be Myrtle's preschool teacher. The owner told Faith that that situation isn't ideal and Myrtle would be in another class if Faith wanted the job and then gave Faith the night to sleep on the offer.
The short story is that I wasn't comfortable with it and either was Faith. To me it just didn't seem fair for Myrtle to go from being with both of her parents each day to neither if there was another option.
Right now Myrtle doesn't care how much money her parents have, rather how much time and love she receives from us - she gets a lot. So, I expressed to Faith that there had to be another option and I knew God would answer my prayer over this. The following morning it came to me to mention to Faith that if her future employer had more information she might be inclined to make a different decision.
Faith called her and said something like "Thank you for the offer, but in the past year my husband has been diagnosed and treated for cancer and it made me realize how much my family means to me and what my priorities are. If I can't be with Myrtle I won't be able to accept the job."
Faith was thanked for her honesty and was told she'd think it over and call Faith later that day. She called Faith back and said she just had such a good feeling about her and would make an exception. Answers to prayers of course don't change another's will, like some type of mind control over another, rather one can feel inspired how to act or what to say to be bring about a righteous desire if it is God's will. Personally, I feel that was an answered prayer.
Myrtle being such a bright, smart, social and loving girl I have always felt that it's a crime if she doesn't spend the day with other kids giving them unsolicited hugs and getting outside to discover her world. I am so incredibly happy that she will have friends 5 days a week to play and learn with. Also, that Myrtle can be with her mother each day.
|Myrtle giving her friend Lyla hugs. Myrtle prefers if they can't run away, like Lyla's brother Owen does.|
Today the three of us popped over to the preschool to drop off some forms, etc. and to see how construction of the new preschool is coming. It was Myrtle and mine's first time there. I was so thrilled to see Myrtle over the moon with all the toys. Everything there is built for her size, her mind was blown. To see that there was a big yard for her to enjoy was a major bonus - kids need to go outside and get dirty!
While Faith and her boss chatted I watched Myrtle so content to be there. I couldn't help but wonder how different her days would been had I not been her advocate and piped up my concerns and prayed about what to do. Then the weight of Myrtle's new life soon hit me, Myrtle would be with her mom and friends and I would be left out.
I'm reminded of scene from a movie:
Ethan: Where's your dad?
Peter: Uh... no idea.
Ethan: When's the last time you saw him?
Peter: 1977. He had his bags packed at the door and he picked them up and put in the back of his car. And, uh, drove away. Last time I ever saw him.
Ethan: [begins laughing hysterically] That's so funny! My dad would never do that, he loved me!
Maybe "left out" is too strong of a way to express the change, but it's how I
feel felt. Being Myrtle's father has been my life's highlight, she is such a joy (incidentally Joy was one of the names we thought of giving her). After my diagnosis and spending most of my time home she has been a welcomed ray of sunshine. Literally no one but me and God know how much my role of being her father has kept me going. To all of a sudden to see her new preschool where she'd be spending her days crushed me.
Seemingly out of nowhere Faith's new boss said to me "Any time you need to snuggle with Myrtle and say hi, feel free to." I smiled and said casually "Thanks, I think I will."
She and Faith kept talking and I turned around and tried to keep it together, keeping my eyes WIDE to avoid tears that found their way out anyways. I wiped those away. How could I have been comforted so quickly? How did Faith's boss just happen to weave that side comment there and then? Like I said, and I mean it, God knows how much my role of being her father has kept me going and I know I am blessed.
“There are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle; you can live as if everything is a miracle.”
~ Albert Einstein