I Choose Us

It was one of those date nights where you think it’s normal and predictable, but I was soon to learn otherwise. Tom and I had decided to watch a movie at home, something we rarely do on date nights because of the lack of conversation. But this movie sounded like it would be worth it.

The Family Man was the movie starring Nicolas Cage and Tia Leoni.

The story tells of man who had a woulda coulda shoulda moment and the lesson he learned in the process. I won’t spoil the story for you if you haven’t seen it and would like to. But there was one line “Kate” said that affected me deeply.

You see, at the time, Tom and I had lived in our home for nearly a decade. Our three children were in their teens and our house seemed much smaller than it did when we first bought it.

Tom was considering a move.

I was hoping for an addition.

Painting of our home – a gift from Tom’s Dad.

We live in a neighborhood surrounded by long-time friends, many of whom go to the same church we do. We do life together, and our memories are precious. I am the sentimental one in our marriage. I tend to cling tightly to people I love and the memories I hold dear. This is not necessarily a good thing. God is teaching me along with Tom’s help the importance of holding all things loosely and leaving God to decided what He will give and what He will take away. It isn’t easy, but peace always follows when I am willing to surrender to His will for my life.

Oh my, that was a rabbit trail. Sorry. I pray it was for someone who needed to be encouraged by my current challenge. Anyway, back to the movie. I was trying to follow Tom’s lead in the decision, but I was afraid he would choose for us to move. It was an emotionally charged season for me, for us.

I have heard it said that the reason movies or books resonate with us and maybe not others is because of the touchstones in the story. We all have them. Something is said or shown that triggers a special memory from your own life and suddenly you’re drawn into the story as if you were the main character. It’s happened to me countless times, this being one of them.

Kate, the female lead in the story was struggling to follow her husband’s lead in a decision as to where they would live. (See the touchstone? I was riveted!) Below is what she said:

You know, I think about the decision you made. Maybe I was being naive, but I believed that we would grow old together in this house, that we’d spend holidays here and have our grandchildren come visit us here. I had this image of us all gray and wrinkly, and me working in the garden, and you repainting the deck. But things change. If you need this, Jack, if you really need this, I will take these kids from a life they love, and I’ll take myself from the only home we’ve ever shared together and I’ll move wherever you need to go. I’ll do that because I love you. I love you, and that’s more important to me than our address. I choose us.

This link will allow you to see the scene from the movie–it’s a powerful demonstration of what marriage is meant to be, and we encourage you to take a moment to watch it.

I’m crying again just remembering it all. God spoke to me in that moment saying I could follow Tom anywhere because this was more important than my hopes and dreams for the future. I chose us!

And Tom was affected in a similar way. He ended up choosing for us to stay here in our home adding on some much needed space. This is the place where I can work in the garden and he can pressure wash our back deck and where we are welcoming our kids and grandkids into our home as often as they wish to come. ❤

There is one special place in our family room that I insisted be built for the grandchildren we didn’t yet have. It is a padded window seat surrounded by fluffy pillows and all my favorite childhood books. I knew one day, if God so allowed, we would have grandchildren who would love this little spot in our cozy home.

Willow enjoying my window seat with Pooh

Now 9 years later, we have 5 grandchildren, and my dream has come true. They love their little corner built for them years before their parents were even married. Isn’t God good the way He leads us to the plan He has for us? Had we moved, I know God would have given me lots of memories in our new place. But I am grateful for the twenty years we’ve called this house our home. And today, TODAY, my newest granddaughter, Stella Grace will come to our house for the first time in her two months of life. This Nana is very excited to show her my window seat. 🙂

What memories do you have of your home? Have you ever been affected by the touchstones in a movie or book as well? How did it help you or encourage you?

About Debi Walter

Tom and Debi have been sharing encouragements through their blogs for many years. Marriage, Reading God's Word and documenting family history is our focus. Growing in our relationship with the Lord is primary in all we say, write or do. We are grateful for all who desire to join us in the same endeavors.
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11 Responses to I Choose Us

  1. Walter says:

    Wow.The line is totally awesome. That’s one loving wife. I will look for the movie. I know that one movie that has always impacted us is “The Notebook”, I especially love the way they grow old and die together, with a happy family, grandchildren and all. The husband loved the wife dearly despite the fact that the wife was mentally ill and couldn’t even remember him. He read her the same story everyday. I believe you’ve already watched it, but if not, look for it.


    • Debi Walter says:

      Yes, we’ve seen The Notebook. It packs a powerful punch for marriage that lasts a lifetime. I practically had to swim out of the theater–in my tears, of course.


  2. awestruck09 says:

    As I think about this, I am remembering back to when we bought our first, nice dining room table set and hutch. When we were first married, we borrowed most of the furniture we used, then later on got some inexpensive furniture that we could call our own.
    But now we were living in a house that was ours now, instead of in an apartment, and we now had two little girls. We found a table set at Sears with a matching hutch. It was light colored wood, which I was unfamiliar with as far as having in furniture.
    As we were contemplating whether we should buy that table set or not, I was analyzing it and then I just imagined that one day, we would all be eating at that table, possibly grandchildren and all. The table had extra leaves so it could expand and be much longer than what we needed it for at that time. But I was sold on it, thinking that it would be a piece of furniture we would be using for more than one generation, possibly. I pictured all these little people and bigger people eating at our table. So we bought it.
    The table has been part of our family now for almost 30 years. It went through homeschooling. It went through my sewing accidents where I didn’t realize the tracing tool made its imprint until after I lifted up the material from the table. It went through ironing, when I used to iron my husband’s clothes, years ago. The teflon from the ironing pad got ironed onto the table. The table has scribble marks embedded into it. I learned later on to keep a table cloth on it.
    The day has come though, where the vision I had in Sears one night, while contemplating this table, has come to pass. We don’t celebrate Thanksgiving at my mom’s anymore, so we celebrate it here. We still have our table, and now we are all sitting around it, grandchildren, and adults.
    I’m glad we got that table set. We still have it, and I hope to keep it for many more years. I don’t want to give up the memories that are now part of that table.


  3. Sharon O says:

    This is all so wonderful. Just love your sentimental ways.


  4. Anonymous says:

    Debi, This is Carla (we were on the same cheerleading team in high school), I am looking forward to your book, but I really like this message in the movie as I have always been like you, wanting to stay where I am, in my house. We have built several additions and I am so attached to it now. The good part is my husband loves it too, but I was moved by what you said about holding on to tightly to things, I am like that and I need to look more at what God wants me to do and trust him to give me peace with it. I could really miss out if I didn’t. Thank you for the encouragement, and the lesson 🙂


    • Debi Walter says:

      Hey Carla! It’s so good to hear from you! I’ll be sure and announce when my book is available, and thanks for sharing about your home–glad to know I’m not the only one so sentimental. 🙂


  5. Carla says:

    Sorry, I forgot to put my name on my message.


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