Thursday, November 21, 2013


Disclaimer: this has nothing to do with television news.

This is my blog, and I can write about whatever the heck I want to.  Today I'm writing about my good friend Chase Shumate.

I met Chase randomly at Port City during a small group mixer, shortly before I got engaged to Kristy.

This mighty (tiny) man of God and I have shared more laughs, tears, heartfelt talks, craft beers, grilled hamburgers, cornhole games, time on the beach, bar stools, tattoo chairs, and general good times than the stars in the sky.

All of this bravado for Chase isn't for naught, or meant to find him a date, (Although ladies, he is single.  Good job, health benefits, he cooks and cleans too.) Enough of that...

This is because few people know the helpless abandonment I feel when I'm left to my own devices. Kristy is gone this week, and I don't do well alone... At all.  I begin to question life decisions.  I begin to question my place in this world. I begin to ponder my purpose and wonder if what I'm doing with my life has meaning.  I begin to wonder if my past and my sin has caught up with me and if God has forgotten about me.  I get scared. 

Kristy is in Thailand covering Franklin Graham's festival.  She's covering events and stories and telling the story of God's redemptive love for his sons and daughters.  What did I do today? I shot a story on sweepstakes parlors being shutdown in Charlotte.  (Pause and think about that for a moment.)

Now, marriage isn't about comparing yourself to your spouse.  A high profile job with travel isn't any more "holy" than a tv news camera guy who pushes glass for a living.  I understand both of these points.  It doesn't make it any easier when she's gone.  The root of my desire to have my wife near me is simply this, I am not complete without her.  I don't care if that makes you sick to your stomach or not, or if you think it's mushy and over the top.  I am openly unapologetic about my love for my wife and the grace God showed me when He saw fit to marry us.

Often times, seeing the impact her work has can make me feel like mine is insignificant.  I think it's fair to say that as a man, alot of my pride is tied to the work I do.  Pushing glass in a smokey sweepstakes parlor while your wife is on the other side of the planet witnessing people make life changing decisions and entering into a relationship with God, can be a little jarring to the system and really make you question your line of work.

But the truth is this: I love my job.  I love meeting new people everyday.  I love being a camera jockey.  I love working at a job that lets me get out of the building every day. 

Enter my friend Chase... We were talking tonight about all of this self pity, introspection, etc, etc and he says to me: "Dustin, don't ever feel inadequate because of Kristy's job. You have to support her. You reach many people through her. You help her be successful. That's not something to overlook.  You supporting her is your job. You are "behind the scenes" just as you are in your camera job."

And then he sends me this picture. It took a few moments for all of that to sink in, but when it did, there weren't enough tissues in this apartment to mop up my tears and snot.

So, where does all of this leave me? I'm glad you asked.  If you've managed to make it this far into this rant, you've certainly realized #1, how therapeutic just writing this down has been. And #2, I am truly a man blessed beyond my wildest dreams.

At the end of the day, I have a job I truly love, a smoking hot wife who will undoubtedly bring me cool trinkets from Thailand (hint, hint), and a very good friend like Chase Shumate to present a little perspective into my life when I'm feeling sorry for myself.

Now, isn't there something on fire that I need to go shoot?


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