“I Was Born to Take Care of You”

James worked three jobs: driving a truck, driving a bus for the school, and being the youth leader at church.  He also began college again, having quit in his younger days, standing up in class and speaking out for his beliefs.  He wasn’t afraid to tackle a difficult situation, conversation, or project… or relationship.  James was a busy man.  But his No. 1 job was to take care of me.  And anyone that knows me knows that is a full-time job.  He would get my Bible and my treats for my Sunday School children all ready (he was always on time and had it together) and stand in the bathroom doorway, leaning his shoulder against the doorjamb, watching me finish with make-up.  I would say, “I’m hurrying,” and he would reply, “Just take your time; I like watching you.”  He was the husband the Bible talks about when it tries to teach us how to interact as husband and wife.  If he told me once, he told me a thousand times, “I was born to take care of you.”

Beauty and the Beast

He did take care of me.  He was a neat, orderly person; everything had a place and it should be kept there.  I am a slob and drove him nuts, so he taught me and encouraged me and showed me how to be orderly and how good it feels to be orderly.  He took care of the yard, the pool, the vehicles, cooked, washed clothes, cleaned.  Anything I could do, quite literally, he could do just as well or better.

James and Brenda

He didn’t need me.  He loved me.

And he loved my children.  Even though they were older, he still felt a responsibility toward them and had concern about their lives.  My youngest son was no exception, my youngest son who had finally been diagnosed with schizophrenia, my youngest son whose behavior became more and more absurd, my youngest son who would eventually take the life of the man who understood him the most.


James had done research about schizophrenia for his college classes and would call and talk to the doctors concerning my son’s illness, the medications, the subsequent hospitalizations, doing what he could to get the help needed, the help that never came, the help that could have saved his life.

Yes, I am still angry.

16 thoughts on ““I Was Born to Take Care of You”

  1. oh my goodness. im sorry for your pain, and my heart goes out to you. i suppose its hard but you should take solice in the fact that some people will never know a person like that in their life. this isnt intended to make light of your heartache, but he sounded wonderful.


    • You are absolutely correct. I am very thankful to have had at least for a while what most people never know. God has been good to me. And James was wonderful… most of the time. 🙂 None of us are perfect, and I don’t mean to imply that he was either, but I just felt the need this year to share the great parts of him with the world. It’s been ten years, ten short years.


  2. This brings tears to my eyes Brenda. We will never forget James. He really was an awesome guy. And you are right… 10 short years. Seems like yesterday….

    Love you.


  3. Barbie, do you remember saying that it’s just us being selfish to want them back? That statement is so true, and I hold it dear to my heart for what better place to be than walking with the very One he adored.


  4. okay crying again… The faith you have always shown has made me hunger for the same. Don’t know if I could be as strong… And what a blessing to have had James. 10 years…wow!


    • Terry, there could never, ever be anything said about me that I cherish more than these words you have just written: “The faith you have always shown has made me hunger for the same.” THIS is what I ask God for when I talk to Him about what I want from life: to have people crave Him whenever my shadow falls upon them. Thank you, my dear friend. I could never receive a better compliment. 🙂 PS. I am not strong, but “I can do all things through Him who gives me strength.” Phil. 4:13


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