There has been one massive NYC snow storm complete with 10 inches of snow and painfully low temperatures, 2 bouts of the flu, and an innumerable amount of diaper leaks… on my lap!
I have also – rather impressively I might add – gone through two boxes of Kleenex… of which the remnants are still scattered in and around my bed!
And if that wasn’t bad enough, I caught my hair on fire while trying to light a candle, my daughter saw a picture of an elephant and called it “Mama,” and I tragically learned that ALL Fruit Loops are the exact same flavor! Oh, the cruelty!
All that to say that after two weeks of making a permanent home in my sweatpants, ordering takeout, rocking the messy bun (with special emphasis on messy!), and spending many days sprawled out on the couch watching countless episodes of ‘Scandal’ on Netflix, I came to realize something…
I am not as cool as I once was!
6 years ago, I was tan & toned, and I wore high heels more regularly than some brush their teeth! I had aspirations of putting meals on the table that would make Mario Batali swoon, and I believed that every outfit would be best accessorized with a coordinating bow for my daughter and a flawless coat of nail polish for me!
All this is laughable considering that my current chipped nails are tinged with yesterday’s blue play dough, and my daughter is running around – without a bow mind you – but with only one pigtail intact that looks more like a growth on the side of her head! … And seriously, WHERE ON EARTH ARE HER PANTS?!?!
Sigh. I digress…
There is no denying that my life is in no way reminiscent of a Harlequin Romance Novel, and that my parenting style would be nothing to write a book about… which is what often leads me to question if THIS is what my husband knew he was signing up for when he said ‘I do’ all those years ago!
… if spit up, stretch marks, messy buns and sweatpants were even on his radar?
And now that they are, if I still have what it takes to make him happy?
Oooooooh shoot! It’s about to get REAL!
As a little girl I used to day dream about love and marriage. I can remember passionately kissing pillows as if they were Disney characters, poring over elegant wedding gowns in bridal magazines, and meditating on advertisements depicting romantic getaways where couples are shown tossing their heads back and laughing joyously, as they soak together in hot tubs in the shape of champagne glasses.
And yet it would seem that the romance-filled, passion-infused, lifelong commitments we dream of exist only until we are actually in one!
Sadly once you’re married, a “successful” marriage is often weighed merely by whether or not you are ‘still married’… ‘Still in love’ and ‘still happy’ with our spouse only seems to be an added bonus!
Recently though, while watching on old Barbara Walters interview she did with Ronald Reagan, I was caught by something he said that I will never forget…
Ronald Reagan’s marriage to his wife Nancy was always in the spotlight. Even to this day it is remembered by them always walking hand in hand, leaving each other love letters, and by the fact that they never stopped courting.
Reagan said his wife gave him “…a marriage that was like an adolescent’s dream of what marriage should be,” and then he quoted this powerful statement by Clark Gable:
“There is NOTHING more wonderful for a man than to approach his own doorstep knowing that someone on the other side of the door is listening for the sound of his footsteps.”
Usually I envision the moments before my husband gets home a little differently …timers going off… me scrambling to retrieve dishes from the oven… chasing a pants-less child around and attempting to put a bow on her head…. and hurriedly changing out of my sweatpants and hiding the evidence before my husband walks through the door…
But like Clark Gable so beautifully communicated, it’s about the significance of truly valuing our spouse! It’s about offering the gift of welcoming him home each day just as he is.
It’s about desiring to be the first person to high-five your husband when life has worked in his favor, and being the sounding board he can rant and rave to when it’s not! Maybe even throwing in a curse word in agreement to reeeeally drive home the fact that you are on the same team! 😉
Our husbands don’t care if the kid has a flipping bow on her head, or, if on occasion, the sweatpants beckon (… though I speak from experience when I say finding kleenex in the bed might be a problem!) He doesn’t care what new shade of lipstick we are wearing, or what Pinterest-inspired feast we have slaved over; our husband’s want US!
They want our respect, our admiration, and our constant support!
So no matter what the climate our husbands are walking in from – whether they drag themselves in sopping wet from an impending storm, frazzled and disoriented from an especially turbulent day, or radiating big smiles and good news on the tip of their tongues – let’s remember there is not a more wonderful gift we can give the men in our lives, than to be on the other side of the door awaiting the sound of their footsteps…
… For as long as we both shall live.