It’s the time you’ve all been waiting for: Beautiful speaks! Sure, she leaves comments, which was a HUGE deal for her. This is the first site she’s ever been compelled enough by my writing to leave a comment for all to see, and now she has her own site over at kris·tin·ol·o·gy where she tends to talk about me some, too.
Here’s the format that this took place with: I wrote down a ton of questions in this as a draft and let her take her time to answer as many of them as she wanted to, and then we deleted the ones that didn’t make the cut or didn’t get answered for one reason or another. Basically, it’s a 60 Minutes interview after the producers get their hands on it, except all of her answers are in her words and in complete context. Ready?
Fatboy: Hey, Beautiful! Whatever made you want to go out with me that first time, be it that freezing Memorial Day at the beach or our first date?
Beautiful: You were interesting. We could spend forever talking about nothing. You always had such a different perspective on things than I did. I couldn’t wait to see what you thought.
Fatboy: When or how did you find out that I have cystic fibrosis?
Beautiful: I was told by a mutual friend from church shortly after I met you, that you were not a healthy person. All that I was told by our friend was that you couldn’t have kids and couldn’t be cured. I found out from you later that you had CF, but I really had no idea at that point what that meant.
Fatboy: I’ve said on the site at least a dozen times that you kicked my butt into gear one night to the point of getting it through my thick skull to take super care of myself and see how things go living like that. Turns out that you were right. Again. Do you have any tips for spouses of someone with CF that is living life the was I was before March?
Beautiful: Of course I was right! Just don’t give up on your CFer. Let them know how important it is to you for them to be doing everything they can to be with you as long as they can. The other thing is to have patience. Before Fatboy was doing all of his treatments, I didn’t realize how much time and effort it would take to be consistent about doing them. Now he is eating ALL the time, and I have had to learn to be patient and wait for treatments to be over before we go out somewhere instead of just leaving right away like we used to.
Fatboy: What is the hardest thing about living with someone with CF?
Beautiful: Realizing, at times, that despite our best efforts, you are still sick. After you spend all day doing treatments, it makes me sad when you still cough. There is nothing you, or anyone, can do about it. Not that you aren’t healthy, but it just reminds us to try to make the most of everyday, and not to sweat the small stuff.
Fatboy: What is the easiest thing that you thought would be hard before we got married and you knew for sure what it would be like?
Beautiful: Sleeping. I’m a very light sleeper, or at least I used to be. I really thought that with you coughing during the night, I would never be able to get any sleep. However, except for the rare occasion, it really doesn’t bother me. Either I have become a deeper sleeper, or I’m just really used to hearing that sound.
Fatboy: If all other things were equal, would you rather I didn’t have CF before this point or do you feel that my CF has an integral role in our relationship and who I am. Sure, we’d both take it away in a heartbeat for my health’s sake, but how about up until now?
Beautiful: No CF for sure. Even though CF has definitely shaped everything about who you are, I still wish you didn’t have it. Life would be so much easier (and cheaper) without CF. I’m sure I would have liked the non-CF version of you just as much!
Fatboy: I think you are an amazingly strong, caring, and compassionate person to see me get sick so many times in our 4 years of dating. Then you said, “yes,” to marrying me for the rest of our lives. I’m not sure I could do that if I had been in your shoes because I’ve never been in a non-CFers shoes dealing with loving someone with CF. For me, the decision to want to marry you was a lot less complex. How did you prepare yourself for that decision? Can you offer us any insight into your pro/con list or whatever made it a sound decision for you?
Beautiful: I just made up my mind that I either had to lose you now, by breaking up with you, or risk losing you at some point in the future, if you did get really sick. Also, I could have married someone else, who could have died in a car crash or something else at any time. No one has any guarantee on his lifetime. I decided that I would rather enjoy any time that I could have with you, rather than choose to have no time with you.
Fatboy: What advice would you give to someone who is in love with someone with CF?
Beautiful: Don’t ever pretend that you know how they feel. No matter how much you are used to what they go through, you still don’t know what it’s like to be them. The best example of this is how people (which used to include me) always say they wish they could eat like Jesse does and not put on the weight. While it would be awesome to pile on the sweets, that benefit hardly outweighs the costs. I know he hates when people say that, even though they don’t mean anything by it. I also never realized how much work it is to have to eat that much before we were married. I’ve seen he talk himself into snacks in the evening when he doesn’t want anything because he hasn’t had enough calories that day. No fun.
I’m so proud of how hard you have been working on your health the last couple of months, and all the improvements you have made. What a difference! I’m so very glad I chose to marry you, and wouldn’t change my mind if I had the decision to do over again. I love you!
Fatboy: With that note you can see that I married way over my head. Beautiful never ceases to amaze me with her ability to adjust to the stupid CF crap that jumps into our lives and tries to disrupt things that we have planned. She’s simply amazing, and that’s why I wanted to give you all the opportunity to have a look into my life with my babe. We hope you enjoyed reading it as much as we enjoyed writing it for you.
We were just joking after reading the last two paragraphs that we were being over-the-top sappy. We’re not usually like this, but we really do try to not “sweat the small stuff.”