Dear Wives of the World,
I get it. Your life is crazy-town. I know this because all of our lives seem to be filled with endless rounds of errands, work, kids, homework, sports, church, cooking, cleaning, bills, and—OH, MY WORD—I could go on and on. Just living our lives can be exhausting. There are days when I look at my to-do list and realize several of the things on it I keep moving back a day. Again and again and again. Because life.
I’ve observed lately that it would be so easy to live my entire life and never actually LIVE my life. I’ve lived my life for so long reacting to the thing that’s shouting at me right here, right now. My goals and dreams are so far in the distance now that it’s possible I will never get there. Life is so much more than reaction.
But, I digress. This letter to you is about our husbands, mine and yours.
Once upon a time this man was all we could think about. We couldn’t get enough of him. When we were with him we were in heaven, when we were separated it was like hell. We dreamed of a life lived together. We dreamed of having children, settling down, and growing old together.
Newsflash: We dreamed of what we’re doing right now. Normal life lived together in community with each other. I don’t know about you, but I have let the busyness of life get in the way of noticing how fascinating living my life alongside my husband can be. He’s a pretty amazing person, and it’s sad that in the hustle of everyday things I forget to see it, really see it.
Think about it: Another person looked at you and basically said, “Yes, I like her enough to spend every single day of the rest of my life next to her. Everything I do from now on will involve her. All our experiences from now UNTIL DEATH will be shared. I’ll be her person, and she will be mine.” Do you realize how huge that is? “The rest of our lives” is kind of a big deal. And he said yes to being part of yours.
What I’m trying to say is that I want to look at my husband more. I want to stop asking what he wants for dinner or if he has a meeting that day, and to actually look at him and see that he is a gift straight from Jesus to me. I want to stop letting life just fly by me at the speed of busyness and realize that I have a partner, walking side by side through all the ups and downs of my life.
I know you do, too. We all want our marriages to grow and to deepen, but without saying it verbally, we act like we want it to just happen magically as we go along at breakneck speed. The only real way that it’s going to happen is if we jump off the merry-go-round and plant our feet for a little while, together.
So I challenge you, and I challenge myself. Today, look at him. See him. Remember the past. Give thanks for the present. Be excited about the future. Slow down.
Reach out and take his hand as a symbol of your remembrance of the fact that you are living this life side by side. This man knows all of your ugly, has seen your worst moments, knows what you look like when you wake up in the morning, and he is still there walking the same journey you are.
You don’t have to make it weird or showy. You don’t even have to tell him what you’re doing.
Just take his hand and smile and give thanks.