The Life of a Blind Wife of a Firefighter

Whew!  Try saying that title ten times fast.

I recently received an email from a reader who has Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP).  This is a degenerative eye condition which usually leads to blindness.  She has a seven year old, and wants another baby before both she and her child get any older.  However, she is afraid since her vision has been, and will be continuing to worsen, that caring for two children will be even more of a challenge.  She asked me if I and other blind moms, parent alone, or are our husbands home with us to help.

For those of you who don’t know, my husband is a fire fighter.  He works 24 hour shifts, and is sometimes gone for 48 or 72 hours at a time.  We also live in a small master planned suburb where the nearest bus stop is about 3 miles away on the opposite side of the Interstate 15.  Our community has everything I might need on an everyday basis like the grocery store, restaurants, UPS, dry cleaner, dentist, Starbucks, Walgreens, 4 great parks within a mile of our home, an Ace Hardware store, a nail salon, and much much more.  We purchased our home here for the local conveniences and for the quiet and tranquil feel of a small town, set away from the hustle and bustle of Las Vegas.  The downside is that it often makes me a slave to the suburbs.

I’m not going to lie, living in the suburbs of Las Vegas, being blind, and having a husband who is gone for long hours is a challenge.  Let me ask you this question.  What in life isn’t a challenge?  I bet standing on one foot is a challenge to many.  I bet singing the, “Star Spangled Banner,” is a challenged to many more.  Learning a new language might seem like a challenge to some, but how incredible is it when you get to speak that language in it’s native country?  Learning how to read and write might seem like a challenge to a young child, but the joy of literacy cannot be achieved without taking the fear of failing and putting it to the test everyday by the first simple task of learning the letters of the alphabet.  Before you know it, that child is reading is first book!

One of my biggest challenges is transportation.  Yes, we do live within walking distance to many things I might need, we also live in a non-pedestrian friendly city, where the public transit system is a laughing joke compared to other metropolitan areas.

How do I overcome this challenge?

1.  Hubby’s fire station is close enough for him to ride his bike to.  This;

a) leaves our family car available for me to use, with a driver of course.

b) gives him a work out to and from work.

c) is great for the environment and cuts down on our gas bill.

2.  I have an amazing network of friends I’ve worked hard in creating that I like to call my Village.  I can’t emphasize the importance of a good support system, especially since we don’t have family nearby.  Both my parents and my husband’s parents live in Northern California.  These women don’t just help me.  We all help and support each other.  We are there for one another to provide a shoulder to cry on, with arms to hug and comfort heartache and pain, with laughs over a good glass of wine, and tonight, with a long overdue Mons Night Out.

3.  Lastly and most importantly, hubby and I have a strong and healthy relationship based on mutual trust and respect.  Together, we have built a foundation for our children to safely thrive.   Our own individual strengths and independence have thus transformed  into the web of interdependence, making it even easier for ALL OF US to succeed.

I’ll end today’s blog with this bit of advice, don’t take those lemons life hands you and merely turn them into lemonade, turn them into lemon meringue  pie or better yet, lemon custard pie.

Until tomorrow, make it a great day!

 

New Baby in the Rupp House

An earlier blogpost called, “Surviving vs. Living,” ended with me challenging myself and challenging others not to just do what you can, but to do what you are afraid that you can’t.  The person who is the best at challenging me is my husband.  This year we celebrate seven years of marriage and ten years of happiness.  To him, just being good enough isn’t enough.  He is continuously striving to learn, evolve, grow, and perfect all aspects of himself, everyone around him, our home, our lives, and our future.

Last April, for my 31st birthday he helped me challenge myself and we literally climbed a mountain together.  I started the year out with the goal that in order to continue the growth of our marriage, I would start to take more of an interest of things that he enjoys.  This was around the same time I discovered the book, “The Happy Wives Club,” by Fawn Weaver.  Her words describing a happy marriage brought me to tears in almost every chapter.  Each description of a happy marriage tugged at my heart as they reflected how I felt about my own marriage.  We’ve always had great communication and I don’t want to sound like I’m bragging, but we are probably the most healthy couple either one of us knows.  If you want a thriving garden, you must love it by more than just giving it the basic water and sunshine.  You must give love by spending time in the garden tilling and fertilizing the soil, singing and talking to the plants, and picking off the caterpillars leaf by leaf.  I chose to compare marriage to a garden because gardening is one of his passions I I’ve just recently begun to love myself.

Backpacks on and ready to embark on our adventure

After spraining my ankle in January I was afraid that I wouldn’t be able to give myself my birthday adventure.  But with his help, I did my first backpacking trip and completed an eleven mile roundtrip hike where we backpacked to an almost century old cabin on the Hidden Forest Trail just outside of North Las Vegas.

Last week we started another life changing adventure together.  This adventure began with an idea to raise $2,400 in 24 days to help fund his enrollment into a self enrichment leadership program.  However, as we wrote out the description for the fundraiser, both of us realized at the exact same moment that it shouldn’t and wouldn’t stop there.  This is the beginning of a beautiful chapter in the Rupp family, an adventure full of endless possibilities.  an opportunity for us to change our lives and other lives by planting seeds.  “Planting seeds,” you ask?  Yes.  We are planting seeds of inspiration, seeds of love, seeds of adventure, seeds of passion, seeds of possibility, seeds of friendship, seeds of who knows what could be out there.  Why?  Because everything starts with a seed.  This is the beginning of The Seed Project.

I would like to ask each and every one of you reading this to please take a minute to watch our video.  For more information on The Seed Project or to help us grow by planting your virtual seeds, please visit www.theseedproject.net.