All That Matters: Sarah and Kevin’s Marriage and Life Together

Note: Sarah is the author of this page for the sake of linguistic simplicity. Kevin and I created it together in terms of content and ideas, and it should be read with this in mind.

Sarah and Kevin with Sarah's dog guide
Kevin and I have shared a long relationship, first as friends and fellow advocates through the American Council of the Blind. We lived in different states; and we nurtured our relationship through occasional visits and shared participation in ACB conventions as well as email and Skype. We were married on June 9, 2012, in Anderson, and Kevin relocated to Anderson from Washington state. The task of combining households for two adults who have been living independently for several years hass been an interesting and sometimes challenging one. Additionally, Kevin and I have faced some unforeseen challenges since getting married.

The Wedding

We planned for a small but fairly traditional wedding at my church. One of the most important things for us was vows. We both wanted to write our vows; and we wanted them to be a reflection of our personal theology about marriage and our personal commitment to each other. Looking back, we would not change one thing about this process; and every day of our lives now is an affirmation of everything we wrote.

Sarah greets some of the guests.
Jennifer Wilson, Amy Morrison, and Julie McGinnity greet Sarah upon her arrival and examine her ring.

We prepared a budget with the help of the pastor which included his moving expenses and our preparations for setting up our new home. As we prepared our budget, we discovered that we would need to scale back our wedding plans a bit. So we moved the wedding from the large sanctuary to a reception area, which we set up as an informal wedding/reception event.

Sarah and friends singing at the piano
Changing this plan was painful for me. I had invited a friend to sing who was an accomplished vocalist. Kevin and I wanted our wedding to be a community act of worship; and Julie’s music was part of setting that environment. It became necessary to inform her that the ceremony had become so informal that we would not be using special music. This felt like the ultimate bad etiquette, especially when I said that I hoped she would still come in from out of state. Julie was very gracious and not only came but provided some of our reception food–and some of my sustenance for the days ahead. One of the most treasured memories I have from that day is the impromptu time of worship that some of my guests shared with me at the piano before we went home that evening.

Little did we know what lay ahead.

Sarah, Kevin, Sarah's dad, Leta, and Pastor David Markle at beginning of ceremony
Sarah and Kevin’s wedding – in an unlikely place
Five days before the wedding, Kevin was hospitalized with pneumonia. Both of his lungs were collapsed, and he was also diagnosed with diabetes, asthma, and chronic hypertension. We modified our wedding plans–again–so that we could get married while he was in the hospital.

Kevin and Sarah hug.
Kevin and Sarah hug at the end of the ceremony.

Our wedding was featured in The Herald Bulletin, the local newspaper here in Anderson. Read the article here. While Kevin was still in the hospital, I posted media from the wedding with some reflections. Watch, listen, and read.

Life with Chronic Illness

The concept of living with chronic illness was not new to us. I live with several medical conditions. Kevin and I discussed these things a lot before beginning to plan our marriage. It was important that he feel comfortable with the impact of these things on both of our lives.

What is new is the impact of his illness. We expected to start our lives together with him relatively healthy. Both of us are blind, but that was a known factor. The diagnoses in the hospital changed everything for us.

Kevin had pneumonia twice more and also had two surgeries during the next 18 months. I also had bronchitis and two surgeries within two years. Our identity as a married couple is far from what we expected.

For a long time, we continued to hope for one or both of us to get off the medical roller coaster. After all, we are both relatively young. If we went back to work at traditional jobs, we could work 20 years or more.

We celebrated our third anniversary in June, 2015. Kevin still uses a nebulizer four times a day. This means he spends three hours a day on the machine. I will have another surgery soon. Life will not likely change for us.

On the positive side, we enjoy life together. We enjoy our cats, and we have learned to nurture our relationship in special ways.

Our thoughts about our wedding have not changed over time. It was not what we would have planned, but it has helped us to begin to live into the vows we wrote and to focus completely on the things that matter. We would not change it. The headline from the Herald Bulletin article often beats through our lives like a drum. We have time in the day for “all that matters”. And “all that matters” is what we run the race to do in life.

If you would like to contact us, please send email to Sarah.

marriage – Sarah Blake LaRose


Last feed update: Saturday September 23rd, 2017 02:49:54 AM

What Does He Do?

Monday April 6th, 2015 08:20:17 AM Sarah Blake LaRose
I have wrestled for some time with questions about how to address a topic that is near to my heart; and I feel that it is time for me to do my best with it, however it comes out. When I was in seminary, there was a great focus on women in ministry. I feel […]

How do you do it? eye surgery, hospital, and oxygen, oh my!

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Last month, I had surgery on my right eye to treat complications related to my artificial cornea. I traveled to Detroit for surgery with Dr. Michael Trese, who has treated me for additional problems with my retina in the past. The surgery is one that I will need repeatedly as long as I am able […]

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Sunday May 5th, 2013 10:45:57 PM Sarah Blake LaRose
Kevin and I have a cute little table for two in our kitchen. It was a housewarming gift from my parents; and it has become our primary eating place when we do not have company. We also enjoy our morning coffee and our evening snack there. Sometimes during our table time, we listen to a […]

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Tuesday February 5th, 2013 05:54:31 PM Sarah Blake LaRose
As I was passing by my husband’s desk this morning, he commented that a Facebook friend of his had posted something entitled “ten ways your husband is like a child”. We glanced over it together, and I had some thoughts in response. I thought I would post them since I often hear general comments of […]

We couldn’t quite wait for Valentine’s Day… What is M&Ms doing to us?

Wednesday January 30th, 2013 01:25:07 AM Sarah Blake LaRose
One agreement Kevin and I made was that we would not make a big deal out of Valentine’s Day. It would be a fun day that we shared with each other with a dinner that we both enjoyed. We would perhaps get each other something, but there were no requirements about flowers or big gifts. […]

marriage tip for rough days

Thursday January 3rd, 2013 06:51:38 PM Sarah Blake LaRose
I am writing this afternoon while sitting in the kitchen, where I am watching two pots of food on the stove, Isn’t it interesting to note how life is full of paradoxes? A watched pot never boils, but you should never leave food unattended on the stove. Think on that for a while–but not too […]

a unique and truly memorable wedding

Thursday June 14th, 2012 05:58:54 PM Sarah Blake LaRose
A note from Sarah: Kevin and I had several meetings with the pastor in preparation for our wedding, which was scheduled on June 9. We planned initially for the ceremony ot be open to members of our church as well as a number of invited guests from the local community and out of town. We […]

update on move progress

Thursday May 31st, 2012 02:08:37 AM Sarah Blake LaRose
I have not kept good progress notes on the wedding/move process. I guess some things take a bit of a back seat when your life goes to boxing, etc. So here is a quite long overdue update for our family and friends. Kevin and I cleaned and boxed, boxed and cleaned. There were some things […]

fun on a Sunday afternoon

Sunday April 22nd, 2012 11:57:21 PM Sarah Blake LaRose
Today we have finished prepping the space in the main part of the house for use as a staging area for packing. We also went to lunch with my mom’s cousin from Portland. I last saw her in 2009; so it was good to see her again! Believe it or not, I feel like I […]

day 2 in Olympia

Friday April 20th, 2012 09:53:55 PM Sarah Blake LaRose
Day 2 in Olympia… It is a rather quiet day today. Yesterday we cleaned like crazy people, stirring up all kinds of things and making all things new! It is amazing what two people can do when they put hearts and hands to the task! We are not quite done yet, but it is happening. […]






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