What are you up to this weekend? My husband and I are celebrating our 13th wedding anniversary. My dad is watching our boys for the night, so we are heading to Dos Brisas to skeet shoot and enjoy a massage! Odd combo? Maybe, but I love it!
I stay far away from advice on anything other than clothes because the more I live, the more I realize how wrong I am about most things (especially parenting and marriage). So, I’ll just stick to the very big lesson I learned during our 13th year of marriage.
When I got married, I thought I completely believed and embraced the “you can’t change him” truth, but then I found myself frustrated with him a lot. Frankly, he doesn’t need changing. He’s just a human and doesn’t do things just like I do, so, of course, that annoys me! Because why in the world would you wake up 5 hours before a flight just to get to the airport 3 hours early? Well, I realized that I actually hadn’t fully embraced not wanting to change him. I didn’t think his way was right, I wanted it to change, and I was frustrated! After all, I was tired and waking up 5 hours before our flight ruined MY trip! (Hi, I’m a brat) This scenario can expand to any number of things, like how to load the dishwasher, or how to handle a situation with the kids… That’s all hypothetical, of course.
The point is, I’d focus on what he was doing and get frustrated. Well, what I really needed to do was get myself right! He’s not my problem! I’m my problem! I’m focusing on the wrong thing! The more I focus on getting myself right with God and taking care of myself, the better we are as a couple! Now, don’t get me wrong, I still get frustrated and some days we still just don’t jive. But it’s not as devastating because he’s not the person I’m looking to to make me happy.
You know what else I found out once I started to worry about myself? He actually has some really good ways of doing things. Way better than I do… sometimes -ha! Sometimes my boys need that voice of reason, and sometimes there actually is really bad traffic on the way to the airport! However, the dishwasher loaded my way is still the best -ha!
A close friend I hadn’t seen in awhile recently asked me how we were doing. Look, close friends know marriages struggle, and I appreciated her bravery to ask and her vulnerability. I mentioned my lesson to her, and she told me something that really solidified it for me. A friend of hers, who is a marriage counselor, said that 90% of the couples that come to see her for counseling need to stop focusing on each other and start focusing on themselves and their relationship with God. There you have it. That’s my lesson. Now, excuse me while I go rearrange the dishwasher.