This is a historic event y’all. I am about to talk about my relationship with my husband, on the internet, for the world to see. Much like the total eclipse of the sun the Midlands was lucky enough to witness, this is most likely a once-in-a-lifetime event. We are typically a “post a wedding photo on our anniversary publicized love” kind of couple.
How about we back up a little – who doesn’t love a love story?
I was in the eighth grade when we met and he was in high school. He was friends with my BFF’s older brother. I remember the day we met and I remember the shirt he was wearing. He also remembers the day we met, and the shoes I was wearing, because “with shoes that big, this girl has to be a beast.” (For the record, I have relatively small feet for my 6′ tall self).
We didn’t start dating until I was a senior in high school, and the rest, as they say, is history. We’ve had our ups and downs over the last decade-plus (who hasn’t), but I think I can speak for the both of us when I say we are happy and we are still very much in love with each other.
With two out-of-the-house careers, three children, and our own social lives to maintain, we are busy. Let’s also add a dog, the headaches of homeownership, and hobbies. We are busy times infinity. Maintaining a marriage is no easy task. We are four years into our marriage, five and a half years into the adventure that is parenthood, and over a decade together as a couple, and we’ve learned a few things that have helped us keep our focus on each other.
Obvious, right? We have never been fancy date night people. We prefer a gas station brownie warmed up and placed in a heaping bowl of ice cream accompanied by some Netflix after the kids have gone to bed, kind of date. Don’t get me wrong, occasionally we’ll get a sitter and enjoy a hot night out on the town, grocery shopping without the children, followed by some more dessert at Kaminsky’s. My point is, it’s not the location or schedule for the date, but the person you’re with. They don’t have to be regular or even scheduled, it’s the random ones that just work out when we needed them to that are the best.
On the phone at lunch, the hubs and I share the ups and downs of our day so far. When the kids and I get home, we throw together some cookies before daddy gets home to make his day better. Baking is my stress reliever and everyone reaps the benefits. The hubs volunteers to make the 8 p.m. on a Tuesday night run to the store for diapers and comes home with a Hershey’s Cookies and Cream bar – because it’s my favorite. These actions, no matter the size tell the other “you are always on my mind.”
Every week my husband and I each have a night out on our own. He typically spends his riding his bicycle over in Harbison, or through downtown with his friends. And I can be found strolling the aisles of Target or Kroger alone (only other introverts will understand this) or out to dinner with my mom or friends. We push each other to be faithful to our weekly night out. It allows us to refresh and focus a bit of time on who we are and the things we enjoy as individuals.
I regularly remind my husband how great of a father and husband he is. On those crap days (as previously mentioned) these reminders seem to be most important. I tell him I appreciate how hard he works so we can all enjoy our way of life. He tells me how amazing I am for providing nutrients for each one of our children for as long as I did. Even after the little miss has bitten me for the umpteenth time. These reminders help us keep going. The key to this is that we tell this to each other.
Occasionally I remember to tag him in a cute picture I took of the kids. A Father’s Day or birthday shout-out may make its way onto my feed, or in an article I want him to read. But that is typically where it ends. If I have something to say to him, I tell it to his face and he does the same (see above). I don’t hide behind the keys of my fictitious computer (cause who has time for a desktop anymore?!), hoping that he and everyone else sees how much I appreciate him. It isn’t about the likes for the soapbox declaration of love and appreciation. It’s about the intimacy of the situation and the sincerity of the statement.
Likewise, if things get rocky, I turn back to him and we work it out. It’s our relationship and it’s private.