Happy Friday, girl. Date night for you? Date morning maybe?
I had two friends separate from their husbands this month. Heart breaking stuff. I know exactly the meat grinder this next year will be for them because I’ve lived it. And no, I’m not talking about Angie, although I mourn for her too.
Tend your marriage, darling. Tend that main relationship in your life. It’s just too easy to take it for granted till you’re so far down the road you don’t know if you can find your way back.
And, just to be clear, I am not in the never-divorce camp. I have advised other friends, because of spousal drug use, serial cheating, or abuse, to leave and get the best attorney they could find. And a therapist. And a big dog.
But, for the majority of us, we should stay. We should stay and make it work because we are married to men who are trying. Don’t take that for granted, sister. Not every man is willing to try.
And I know your man’s not perfect. No, I do, I know that. Because he’s breathing. There is no perfect. Sorry, Cindy, there is no prince.
But then, actually, on second thought, there are princes, aren’t there? The guy who goes to the grocery store at 6 AM for milk. Prince. The guy who cleans up the throw-up, or dog poop, or who scoops the disgusting, rotting leaves out of the gutter to keep your home nice. Prince, prince, prince. The guy who will sit and have tea with your four year old, or play basketball with your preteen after a long day at work. The guy who makes dinner or breakfast or school lunches. Royalty, I’m telling you. The guy who goes to a job he doesn’t love to get the money to pay for food and house and ever-larger pairs of shoes for all those little feet. Is any of this sounding familiar?
I know this is hard. I know that there are ways you’ve been disappointed. I’ve been divorced and remarried and I’m telling you, there is no perfect. Saying my vows the second time was so much harder because I knew what I was getting into this time.
I’m a better wife this time around. I ask for what I need instead of fuming that he doesn’t know. I know now that sadness and fear look a lot like anger in a man. I try to figure out what he needs instead of assuming he is being unreasonable. I do not indulge in that most destructive pastime of dwelling on his faults. When I find myself doing that (because I’m human too and it’s so horribly delicious to just tick off the ways he’s wrong and you’re right, isn’t it?) I stop, and force myself to acknowledge the ways that I’m wrong and imperfect too.
Marriage is work. And it’s worth it.
Date night. Go for a walk around the neighborhood. Sit on your front stoop with a beer or a glass of wine and talk about the day you met. Laugh about the funny things that happened when you were dating. Talk about the ways he’s a great father, or a great lover. Put a fire in the fire pit and lay your legs across his lap. Tell him what you respect about him. Every good thing he’s done, tell him, let him know that you notice. Talk about the awesome life you are building together.
Feed your marriage, darling.
Life is easier with two grown-ups. Life is easier when you have a partner who has your back. You picked this wonderful, imperfect guy for lots of good reasons, right? Remember those.