How To Help Your Loved One Overcome Sickness
By: Mandy B. Anderson
Our story started out simple. First we were just friends, then we slowly became best friends until one day neither one of us could ignore the fact that our “friendship” was blossoming into something more. Nate knew right away that I had Cystic Fibrosis. He sat with me when I did my treatments and even called me during Christmas with his family to see if I was getting over the bacterial infection that almost landed me in the hospital.
Nate lived in an apartment at the church we both attended. This apartment housed two college students who would get free room and board in exchange for acting as security guards every night and locking up the doors in the church. It was a process that took about an hour. Nate and his best friend were the two college students. Many evenings I would tag along with Nate as he locked up the doors and we would talk about our dreams. Not once did he ever tell me that my dreams were insane or silly because of my health. In fact, one evening when I was practicing some songs in the sanctuary, he walked up to me and said “I’m mesmerized by your voice!” He didn’t see me as someone dealing with a sickness and that quality made my heart melt.
We said “I Do” on August 10, 2002. After nine years of marriage we’ve learned that no matter what circumstances we face, as long as we’re together we will be able to make it through. The only reason we can confidently profess this is because we’ve gone through some trials…some really hard trials.
The first time I ended up in the hospital as an adult, Nate wasn’t able to join me because he had to work. He was acting really strange about the whole thing. The rest of my family was concerned and sometimes sad, but Nate was almost ignoring the fact that I was in the hospital at all. I won’t lie – it irritated me. After returning home, we sat down on the floor of our bedroom and had a heart to heart chat. When it was brought to his attention that my feelings were hurt because he didn’t seem upset or concerned that his wife was in the hospital, he simply said “Mandy, it doesn’t worry me because I know that there’s a day coming where God is going to heal you and you won’t have to worry about hospital stays anymore.”
Now, his words might be surprising you, and I completely understand if it does. Both my husband and I believe in divine healing – we’ve seen crazy miracles with our own eyes and we’ve experienced crazy miracles and healings first hand in our own lives. I share this with you because there’s something my husband has done our entire marriage that is an extremely beneficial skill for you to learn. Nate has spoken life over me from the moment I met him.
Out of everyone that has ever been a part of my life, Nate is the only one who has consistently spoken life over me. He has taken care of me when I’ve been sick, weak, and had chest pains so bad that I was hunched over a pillow and even in those moments he spoke life. He has never had a look of fear in his eyes when we talk about my health or the future. My husband’s faith and the words he has chosen to speak about my health and our future together has been one of the biggest factors to why I am able to stay strong and healthy.
Nate often tells me things like:
“Mandy, you are destined for great things.”
“You are healed and you are going to live a long healthy life, Mandy.”
“I am so blessed to have such a talented wife.”
“Mandy, you can do this.”
We’ve had our times of struggle and heartache. We’ve had seasons where we felt like we were roommates that hardly knew each other. We’ve had to find our way through paying off debt and evaluating what was most important in life. We’ve literally lost everything we owned and had nothing but each other and our dog. Through all of this we have been able to stand united and keep moving forward in the direction that we know God is leading us in as we rebuild our lives.
Maybe you’re a parent of a child with CF. Maybe you’re a patient with CF or some other disease. Or maybe you are struggling to reconnect with your spouse or significant other. Wherever you are at right now, I challenge you to start speaking health over your situation and over the person who needs healing in their body. Be their number one advocate. Remind them of their dreams and build them up – tell her she’s good enough to do the things she talks about. Tell him that he matters enough to share his story. Stop living in fear, stop tip-toeing around them like they are going to break. Partner with them and do everything you can to help them become stronger both physically, mentally and spiritually.
Our story isn’t perfect – it’s filled with lots of scars and tears – but we’ve overcome the odds and I’m here to tell you that you can too.
Words can never express how honored I am to be Nate’s wife. He is the perfect compliment to the life I’ve always dreamed of.
Born with cystic fibrosis, Mandy B. Anderson's journey of overcoming a life-threatening disease encourages and equips people to rise up and conquer their own barriers in life. She is an inspirational speaker, singer, writer and Juice Plus+® wellness coordinator who shares her life in such a way that you feel like you just spent time with your best friend. Mandy cares about people, and is passionate about helping them overcome their obstacles so they can live their lives in true wholeness. She is the author of the forthcoming book “In Sickness & In Health: Lessons Learned on My Journey from Cystic Fibrosis to Total Health.”
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