Ok so it stewed a really long time.
I, in my college naivety, never expected to find myself nearly 5 years married with two children in 2010.
I never thought I would love a job with no paycheck and no glamour.
I couldn't have imagined that teaching my little boy to pee pee in the toilet would bring so much joy.
Or that being selfless with my soulmate would take so much work.
So I didn't grow up knowing much about marriage except that my mom didn't seem to care for it much. She had a rough time with it, so I pretty much abandoned the idea all together. But now I am married to this incredible man, a man who has worked so hard for 8 years to be at this place where his childhood dream of being a doctor is finally realized. A man who loved me enough to save his touch, his kisses, until our wedding day. A man who is a better father than I ever imagined. In this day it seems that women have this issue with supporting their husbands, that somehow the act of having dinner ready when your man comes home is some sign of weakness, that putting on makeup and attractive clothes that only he will see is some form of chauvinism, that washing all the clothes and dishes without expectation of an even share of said workload indicates imbalance.
I. LOVE. supporting. my. husband.
This is a great job and one that I believe in whole heartedly. A man needs to feel respected, he needs his home to be a safe place, a haven and sanctuary from the harrowing forces of negativity out in the dark workplace; he needs his wife to be his helper. I'm no expect, I have only 5 years of experience, but I'm confident in these truths.
I've been praying and studying this a lot as of late and am coming to find that the more I deny my selfish impulses, the more I choose to love and give to Corey WITHOUT expectation of some other favor in return, as I choose to hold grudges less and show grace more, the more love he shows me, the more appreciative are his words, the more affectionate are his embraces. All my life I thought I needed some high profile title to matter, but I see now that what I do for Corey, the smile I put on every day for his arrival home, the effort I put into cooking him healthy meals, having the children clean and in good moods, budgeting our money appropriately, keeping no secrets, I see how all of these things are noble and grand in a secret way. Corey's strength and integrity at work are tied to me, intertwined in who I am to him at home and that is a great privilege.
I see so often in the grocery store parking lots and restaurant booths the wife who is sending her marriage down a pitiful spiral by her snide words. I hear them, those knives of "Why would you do that, are you stupid?" The short spoken directions. The woman who walks 10 paces ahead while her husband is left behind wondering what he did wrong, where he went wrong. I don't want to be that. I want to walk hand in hand with my man, even if his pace is a little slower. I want to be so much that his eyes dare not wander. I want to be the grace he receives when failure meets him at work, at home, anywhere.
This isn't easy. Ever. It's a choice EVERYday for me to put him first and trust that he has a good heart that will not take for granted the things I do. Even when he IS taking me for granted, I have to choose to trust that he will see it, that I don't have to point out ALL the things I do for him because our love is such that truth is always at the surface, gratitude the buoy keeping us afloat together.
There are days, weeks even, when I've done every inch of everything for our home. Cared for our children, laundered, washed, swept, mopped, dusted, mowed, repaired, made special meals, baked special treats, bought special gifts, left love notes, offered myself. There are weeks when I get a lot of thank yous and weeks when they are few, but it doesn't matter because Corey is a gift and a privilege and in the end what would I rather have said of me? That I fought for fairness? Or that I gave my all selflessly and, unexpectedly, gained so much in return.