Hartnäckige Mann translates to "Stubborn Man," at least that's what Google says, my brother might dispute that. Anyways, anyone that knows me well or knows a Gotsch or Grahnke knows that we are a stubborn people. Friends joke that it's our German heritage that makes us stubborn, and it probably plays some role in it. My stubborn nature and oldest sibling psyche makes me a very determined person, many times to a fault. My nature is to help others in whatever way I can, make sure they're taken care of and then get my feelings and needs in check.
I fell when no one was around, I fell in front of strangers, I fell in front of friends. Every time I did I felt embarrassed. I would wave off help and try and muster up enough strength to push myself up. "I'm fine, I'm good, don't worry about me." The reality of the situation was I didn't have it under control, no matter how stubborn I was, no matter how much strength I had in my arms, I couldn't get it done. Sometimes I managed to get up on my own, other times I didn't. God was breaking through to me, when I would shout up at him, cursing at him, "help me the f*** out I would say in my head, sometimes out loud, he was answering my prayers by gracing me with help from others. The ever so wise Alfred from Batman said, "Why do we fall Master Bruce? It's so we learn how to pick ourselves back up." Or in my case it's so that I learn to trust in others and know that accepting help isn't a sign of weakness but wisdom.
I find Grace in Michelle. Michelle has been here through all of this. When the doctors gave the diagnosis, when we were tricking out the house to make it more accessible, doing all of the laundry because the machines are in the basement. She's been there when I'm acting like a bull in a china shop, cursing out the Keurig when it doesn't function right and yelling at the cubburds when I can't reach something. Other young adults with ALS don't have this luxury. They don't have someone who loves them unconditionally. Someone who will provide subtle help so that my stubborn pride doesn't feel broken down. Someone to bring laughter to shitty situations. Is it a coincidence that Michelle's middle name is Grace? I don't think so.
I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend celebrating the sacrifice Jesus made for us so that we could have the lives that we treasure so deeply.
Love you guys,