Confession #1 – I am still, at the age of 46, learning how to schedule my time to do all things I need to do and hopefully squeeze out some time for things I WANT to do. As my absence from this blog can testify, I didn’t do so well through July! Might have something to do with the fact that both of the Youth Theater shows were that month with two tech weeks happening just three weeks apart! The summer program is over and life has slowed down . . . sort of . . . or at least, looks like what “slowed down” is around here! Hopefully I can nudge “post on the blog” up the priority list!
Confession #2 – I know that I need to make healthier eating choices, but I get so overwhelmed with the contradictory “healthy eating” information out there – no carb, low carb, low calorie, high protein, low fat, exercise more but only interval training works, lift weights, etc. – that I have to fight a serious urge to give up and just go eat a bowl of ice cream. Or two. I’m not giving up on the healthier eating goal, but I’m not making as much forward progress as I would like!
Confession #3 – Many, MANY years ago, when I got married, I bought into the unspoken but carefully taught lie (the media, comments of other women, etc.) that every husband is a project. They need cleaned up or dressed up or fixed up by their far more capable wives. I didn’t set out on my marriage with the sole purpose of “fixing” my husband but I definitely understood it to be one of my “jobs”. How did I learn that you ask? Simple. Every husband/father on sitcom television was a moron, incapable of having a thought that his wife didn’t carefully and systematically trick him into having. (Don’t believe me? Watch old episodes of The Cosby Show. The man was supposedly a doctor but teachers wouldn’t trust him to have a conversation about his kids and his wife was CONSTANTLY scheming with her kids to manipulate him!) The other “teacher” of this attitude was the way married women I knew spoke of their husbands.
“How many kids do I have? Well, I’ve given birth to three and I’m married so, really, I have four children” at which point all the other women in the group would chuckle knowingly as if some great secret of the universe had been shared.
“And he let her go out of the house wearing a polka dot top with a plaid skirt! But what can you expect, he’s a man!”
You get the idea. It’s taken time, but thanks to some wonderful counselors and, most recently, some FABULOUS accountability partners, I’ve learned to focus on the things about my husband that are amazing. He never shies from physical labor and is VERY quick to help me whenever I ask. Even if I say “whenever you have the time,” he usually jumps up right away to help. He is a passionate pastor and I LOVE to hear him preach. He is a committed golfer – and is actually getting REALLY good at it! – and I can say from personal experience that he is a VERY patient instructor to a total novice on the driving range and is EXTREMELY encouraging (even when said novice somehow manages to bruise her own forearm with her golf club!). He loves to make me laugh, is my biggest fan when there is a theater or music performance I am somehow involved and certainly is my biggest encourager in life.
As I’ve focused on seeing the things about him that are good/positive/amazing I’ve discovered something quite fascinating. We were complete opposites in high school. I, the triple nerd status performing arts geek – band, theater, and choir – and he, the year round athlete. (I hesitate to say “jock” because the man is also extremely smart and doesn’t fit the “dumb jock” characterization at all!) And like many young women, I had this picture of what my “perfect man” would be like. But I”ve learned something. My idea of that “perfect spouse” fell so far short of what I really needed. I’m still WAY more into the performing arts than he is. But he’s tried out for a couple of plays at the local theater. Won an award in the first one and will find out this weekend if he’s been cast in the other. And me? I’ve actually swung a golf club a few times. As for my skill . . . let’s just say I won’t be winning any awards any time soon. Probably ever. But we’ve each managed to step into the others passion a bit and found the experience to be a rather fun one! (And he truly is the most patient instructor ever for a totally uncoordinated clutz swinging a golf club!)
That fascinating thing I discovered? When I learned to value my husband for his character and his drive and his passion, I was thrilled to discover that he really has been my “perfect man” all along. His strengths shore up my weaknesses, his level-headed, analytical approach to things keeps my tendency to respond emotionally from running away with me. He loves to make me laugh and smile as often as he can and frequently tells me I’m beautiful. As if all of that isn’t enough, he tells me “no” when I need to hear it – whether it’s in relationship to finances or my simply trying to get him to do things for me that I really should do for myself! He let’s me babble on about my latest theatrical endeavor and has learned the art of simply listening when I’ve encountered a situation that leaves me needing to vent.
He may not be the man I THOUGHT I wanted. But I am so thrilled to say that he is exactly the man I needed as a partner in this crazy ride called life!