23 January 2015

Christine's 1st Birthday Blog

Christine is getting her first ever birthday blog this year… a day late… but only a few hours late California time…

Aside from her friend Cheryl calling me out for only the boys getting birthday blogs… there are just far too many good things to say about her to fit into one card…
 This last year Christine simply amazed me… accomplishments are nothing new to Christine… her love of precision and excellence has made her an achiever from the day she was born (others would call this being a perfectionist)… and this year she achieved more than we could have ever dreamed of when she first told me she wanted a career in zoonotic disease…  but the true accomplishment of this last year has been her ability to excel in chaos and imperfection…

2014 was messy… her closest friends over the last 9 years in Uganda left in June… her dream of a PhD was continually stalled and stalled again… her employer could only commit to her a month to three months at a time… our son was diagnosed with Aspergers and dyslexia… and 3.5 years of life in the village got unbearable with power outages 3-4 days a week, and a continual lack of water supply… not to mention nursing her husband through MERS and pneumonia only to eventually catch it herself… 

There were days when “throwing in the towel” seemed like the right thing to do… or maybe just our inevitable fate… but Christine stood tall through the fire…

When friends left she wept more than ever and misses them terribly… but also made new friends…

When scholarships were turned down and her entry was delayed… she found new scholarships and sources of funding…

When her employer gave small contracts… she made her self invaluable...

When things got tough with Kadin… she looked for help and found it in abundance… and was filled with grace and understanding as we grew in our understanding of the challenges he would face…

When her husband got sick… she kissed him… and learned never to do that again J

This year I am simply amazed that we are still here in Uganda… and even more amazed that we are talking about the next 3… 4… 5… years…

Over our time in Uganda most people we meet come and go in 1-3 years… most people just look at us like we are crazy for staying 9 years… but this year more than ever I am understanding that Christine is our constant anchor… she fills our home with warmth, love and stability for me and the boys… and thrives despite being surrounded by chaos and imperfection…


Christine is always surprising… constantly growing…  full of faith… and eager for the next adventure… 

This year we reach 14 years of marriage... and she still has me looking forward to a lifetime more of memories, joy, trials and triumphs together with her... 

Love you Christine!

2 comments:

Abby Bartels said...

I fully affirm the tradition of Christine getting a birthday blog!

And I agree with all sentiments expressed.

Am impressed with your whole family for your perseverance, commitment to each others growth and passions, humor, loyalty, integrity, faith, and love!

Happy Birthday Christine!

Lori said...

Amen, Jeff! You certainly do have a precious gem in Christine. It has been exciting to see the Potter take that fortitude and determination that has been part of her character since I have known her as a young girl and watch Him chisel and mold her through the many trials of life. She certainly has yielded to His handiwork and is strong, beautiful in her character, and a blessing to not only your family, but to all of us who know her and to God’s kingdom for eternity. She truly is an amazing woman and I am thankful to God to call her a friend! Lori