Disclaimer: This post contains no recipes, unless you want to call them “recipes for a better marriage” (joking…I mean, if this helps someone out there, that’s great, but I’m not trying to prescribe solutions to anyone other than myself at this point).
My husband and I are about to celebrate our ninth wedding anniversary, and this year I’ve really stuck to my guns: HE gets to plan our anniversary.
In years past, I did all or most of the planning for our anniversaries because:
1) I’m a planner
2) I have more free time than he does
3) I was concerned that if I didn’t plan it, nothing would happen -OR- I’d be extremely disappointed or underwhelmed by whatever it was he planned
Those first two reasons seem simple and reasonable enough, right? But what about the third? Upon self-reflection (crucial in any relationship), I find some deeper issues that need addressing. Issues of TRUST, and most of all: EXPECTATIONS.
With everyone so linked to one another’s personal lives through social media, even blogs, photo sharing, etc., I run across pictures and posts all the time of women who post things like:
“My hubby surprised me with a trip to (insert exotic getaway)!!”
“This morning my husband brought me breakfast in bed and a dozen roses!”
Usually these are followed by some photo that confirms that their statements are true, as well as some mention of how “he always treats me like a princess!” or something to that effect.
My husband has never surprised me with a trip. He has never brought me breakfast in bed. He has never bought me a dozen roses. Not even (GASP!) for an anniversary.
But here is what my husband DOES do:
- He cooks amazing meals for our family any chance he gets
- He helps clean the house (of his own will) daily
- He rubs my back or my feet every night – all I have to do is ask!
- He gives the best bear hugs every day when he comes home from work
- He’s a hard worker and enjoys working
- He comes home every day from work
- He is a great listener and advice-giver
- He loves his children and puts them to bed every night
- He is faithful to me, he’s truly my best friend
I could keep going, but you get the idea.
I love the idea of a simple life. I’ve never been one to desire outrageous adventures. I just wanted to settle down with someone who loves God, who loves me, who has a good sense of humor and is a loyal friend. Guess what? That’s exactly who my husband is! My dream man! Rather than basing my expectations on what I see around me, I need to remember who I am. And who he is. And respect that, and be SO THANKFUL. There’s a verse in the bible about how “they comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise” (1 Cor. 10:12), and this really hits home in this circumstance for sure.
I’m not implying that men who do more exotic/romantic things DON’T do the things my husband does. Maybe they do all of those things, and good for you if you snatched a man like that! But the man I fell in love with, the man I befriended and dated for several years before we married…that man is the perfect man…FOR ME.
So even if he forgets to plan something for our anniversary this year, and we end up grabbing something to eat at a food truck with three kids tagging along, I will be grateful that God granted me this wonderful relationship. Simply wonderful.