this is about me, but then Brad


I know the Bible says it’s not good for man to be alone, but I think it wouldn’t be good for ME to be alone.

On my own, I think too hard. I wonder if my knuckles will get knobby a few years before everyone’s get knobby. I think with guilt about that moment 3 months ago when a friend called and I ignored it because I just didn’t feel like talking. I worry I’m not interested enough in what trendy e-newsletters say I should be into. I ask myself what kind of person goes to eat lunch outside and KNOWINGLY doesn’t apply sunscreen. (And a small voice in my head says, a person who wants cleavage wrinkles. Ewwwwww.)

But with Brad, this is life: Are we living with faith right now? and What are we having for dinner?

And you know what? That’s better. That makes for a more mentally healthy Joanna.

Moving to California (pictures and details soon, promise) has me thinking a lot about my relationship with Brad, and not just because we spent 2-1/2 days straight in a car next to one another and now live in an apartment so small, we can hear one another pee.

But actually, maybe kind of because of those things.

I’m thinking about Brad because it has been incredibly difficult to leave my family, especially my parents. Grief pushing against my eyes, my nose, my mouth, ready to come out every time I blink, breathe, or talk difficult. I keep thinking of it like that: I left my family. (I know. Dramatic.)

Then every time I look at this incredible man who also left his family for the joy of seeing me thrive at work and the adventure of taking chances, I remember he is my family first. The fun thing is I don’t even know what this means. I don’t know what that looks like. But I think it means I probably shouldn’t hang I Left My Family around my neck. I hope it will mean we learn things about one another we don’t already know. I hope it means God fixes our steps in one happy rhythm. I hope it means we find the most fun and the most comfort and the most home in one another. I hope it means I get better at being Brad’s wife.




  1. Shanna

    You guys. I love you. I love you together. I love that you get to experience this season of unknowns and all of its big distance and small apartmentness together. (The line “hear each other pee”… ahahaha! and yes. living it here, too, ha!) There’s a kind of cleaving you don’t feel until you are really CLEAVING and I not only relate to it, I love hearing about it from you, in your words.

  2. Tim

    I love you guys, too.

  3. Kathryn

    Although we haven’t done anything as drastic as move across the country, I can relate to this so much. Our plans for the next few months/years will mean that I don’t get to do the things with my family that I’m used to doing and part of me wants to stamp my feet and say that it’s not fair. But I also have to accept that my definition of family is changing now and that is something that I should embrace. Thank you for these words.

  4. Dad

    Brad is the biggest reason I was not afraid to “let you go” and move halfway across the country. What an adventure!

  5. Mom

    Ditto Dad!
    Love you so much.

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