Things My Husband Taught Me

  • You are more than you think you are.
  • You should not beat yourself up when you don’t think you have done well enough. Get up and go on. You give grace to others, now accept grace for yourself.
  • When you don’t think you can go on, you probably need to sleep. Just go to bed and see how much better everything will be in the morning.
  • Your value is not determined by how many things you scratch off your to-do list.
  • Your beauty is not calculated by someone else’s pre-measured ideal.
  • You are a word warrior. You need to write.
  • You need to try things that are out of your comfort zone, even things that terrify you sometimes.
  • You should have some really nice things, like insulated outer-wear so that you don’t get too cold when you are doing scary things like glissading down mountain sides.
  • You are not the one who will keep your children in the evil day. Lay that burden down and trust God.
  • You don’t have to cook gourmet meals to impress. Just be happy when you serve the food.
  • You are juggling too many things. Let’s try an alternate route with school.
  • You are getting better at this thing called life.

I know that I am really, really blessed. I told you how I used to be afraid of the high swing. The desire to be safe would have sabotaged so many sources of joy in my life if Gabe hadn’t encouraged me to try them. I probably wouldn’t have the courage to blog without his support. 😀

Here’s to my good man! I am truly grateful for all the things I have learned in these years of sharing the graces of life.

What We Didn’t Know

Yesterday was our 12th anniversary. See, here we are, after about 8 hours of just the two of us. It’s still there – that magic my friend, the preacher’s daughter, called “the glue when Dad puts their hands together in marriage”.

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Twelve years ago we could not have imagined awakening on our anniversary to conspiratorial whispers and clinks of crockery in the kitchen as our children made a surprise breakfast. We pretended to sleep while someone slipped loudly into our room with a lighted candle which he set directly under the lampshade, which I hastily rescued. The little sister got sent in at least three times to check if we are awake yet, seeing as the eggs were getting cold. The waiters brought in plates with pancakes and eggs, excellently cooked. My pancake was a teddy bear, Gabe’s was a penguin with its feet chewed off. Then came the crowning touch of a breakfast tray with steaming mugs of tea, a bowl of sugar and a pitcher of syrup, along with a funny little music box tinkling out a merry tune.

The children had gone to the neighbor’s yard sale the day before and picked out some anniversary presents. One was the holder for the lighted candle. Twelve years ago I wouldn’t have thought that I would ever cherish a rather unusual porcelain bird/flower candle holder painted in various astonishing, pearly colors. Another gift was a small pot with a lid that clasps, “for special things”. (Why do I think of Pooh?) I love it! And the music box… which someone made it their business to wind and rewind the entire time we ate our breakfast, because everyone knows there should be romantic music on an anniversary. On our honeymoon, we would have laughed at the idea of having an audience of five watching us eat our breakfast in bed, but we didn’t have the heart to send them away, seeing as they were so exceedingly pleased with themselves. It was actually quite romantic, when you consider that out of our love sprang these dear little people sprinkled all around us.

Twelve years ago we would not have been thinking in terms of going on a date in a rather large Suburban with very high miles, seeing as the tiny red Mazda was working just great for us. In fact, I believe we made merciless jokes about those family vehicles. Now we are poster children for those jokes. Guess what, we don’t even care! Neither would we have known how rejuvenating it is to a marriage to just spend time with each other, even if you are grocery shopping or ambling through the mall, hand-in-hand, checking out the clearance racks.

Sometimes we look back and laugh at those kids that got married, with all their ideas and plans. We hadn’t a clue that there were career switches for Gabe, from deck builder to teacher to nurse. We hoped for children, but we didn’t know. Sometimes through the years we would look at each other and say, “What do we think we are doing? We don’t even know what we are doing!” When the questions get too big, we have learned to just leave them to Providence and say, “At any rate, I’m with you.”