Saturday, March 14, 2009

Marriage - first few years

I don't know what happened with the pictures, sorry.
The picture of me and Jon together was taken on Liberty Island, after visiting the Statue of Liberty. It is one of my favorite pictures of us ever!
The one by myself is taken at the top of the World Trade Tower. All my pictures from the WTC are very meaningful to me. When I flew into Newark on my way to China, the view out of my window took my breath away. Where those beautiful towers stood now just a hole in the ground...
The last picture is the main office of Teen Challenge. The older building to the right is where we lived. It was nice on the inside.

Ok back to the theme of marriage....

So Jon and I eloped. The pictures I posted yesterday of those incredibly thin people was from a small ceremony we did at Jon's parents' home so the family could be included.

Our first few years were good. Jon went back and finished SEC. I took a job as a juvenile probation officer with a contracted company, BAYS (Bay Area Youth Services). It was a great place to work right out of college. At that time, the director was a Christian and everyone in the office was SEC grads (except for an office worker who was a Jehovah Witness-that was an interesting combo!) We were all friends and had a good time working together. There wasn't alot of paperwork in those days. My starting salary was $14,700. I was so happy to be making the big bucks!
Jon's parents bought us a little trailer in an adult trailer park as a wedding present. Somehow my father in law talked the owner of the park into letting us live there. She figured with us being bible school students we wouldn't cause too much trouble and we didn't! The trailer was a one bedroom and the smallest non RV trailer I have ever seen. All the appliances were either pink or avocado green. I hate pink anything to this day!

In 1992 we got appointed as Assembly of God home missionaries to New York City. That was our goal and we were thrilled. In the A/G, missionaries have to itinerant. That means they travel from church to church raising their budget. I hated being in a different church each service but Jon loved it. We finally moved to NYC early in '94. We lived at Brooklyn Teen Challenge where we worked. We had a dual appointment we also were helping to plant a Decade of Harvest church, City Church, which was meeting at the Teen Challenge Center.

Working in ministry in NYC was a ying/yang experience. There were things we loved and things we hated. I love NYC, the people the subways, the beat of the city. There is no place on earth like it! I had mixed feelings about Teen Challenge. I loved the students and could connect with them. I never fit in with the most of the staff. That was a new experience for me. Everyone usually loves me :) I didn't really enjoy working day to day with the students because as staff you were encouraged to be rather heavy handed with them over little things. It was very militaristic with no room for individual thought. I personally did not see that benefiting the students in the long run as they had to learn to make decisions for themselves in the future. The women had alot of emotional scars and were encouraged to let it all hang out. There was alot of weeping and wailing and I just do NOT do good with emotion like that. That's not how I handle things by rehashing the past and I don't think it's healthy. Heck I've not had that easy of a life but I don't cry about things every time I turn around..."Let it go!" is my motto. I think the women's program was handled much differently than the men's program. Jon was happy and somewhat fulfilled between the two ministries. It was not at all what we expected and we did not feel we were used to our full potential. I began doing more office work and helping to schedule services for the Teen Challenge choir. I was happier doing that than working in the program where I didn't feel comfortable with some things.

However during that time, the unbelievable happened! After 6 years of marriage and basically trying to have a baby most of that time, I got pregnant out of the blue!!!! Thus began the most fulfilling role of my life!

Just to let you know my crazy dog is still barking furiously at every car. We got up with her 3x last night but to no avail. Just when we'd get back to sleep, she'd start barking and running up and down the fence line at every vehicle that came by. By this morning she had almost lost her voice. But we were outside today working and she calmed down some and now she's having no problems with her bark! I'm calling a vet friend on Monday if she keeps this up to see if he'll put her on psychotropic meds!!
Tomorrow- all about the perfect child!

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