For those of you who have been keeping up with the craziness of my life, you know that shit has been TOUGH. Incredibly tough, but there has been so many people to help our little family survive. I’ve spent a lot of time trying to keep our family together and functioning and have, naturally, neglected certain aspects of my life. Namely, my own self-care and my relationship with my husband. We all know that both of those aspects our lives are vitally important, but, just as true, we let them play second fiddle to our children and their needs far too often. As life has been settling down, I have been better able to recognize areas of my life that are suffering and try to address them. This is easier said than done. However, I was inspired to write about this after hearing Blake Shelton’s song, “God Gave Me You.”
I know this sounds a little bit “angst-y teenager,” but despite having heard this song a million times, when it came on the radio this past week, I was brought to tears by the verse: “God gave me you for the ups and downs. God gave me you for the days of doubt. For when I think I’ve lost my way, there are no words here left to say, it’s true. God gave me you.”
It’s been quite some time since I’ve felt very strongly that something has occurred because of divine intervention, and I’m not sure that is what I am feeling now, but I was profoundly struck by the message in this song: that those who are by our sides through thick and thin are nothing short of a gift. As I thought about this, I was also struck by an overwhelming feeling of guilt for not always treating my husband as such. Despite any of the conflict that we have had in our relationship, he is a gift and I sometimes take that for granted. I am especially guilty of that during our more recent trials and it hurt me to my soul when the realization came to me.
I started to ruminate on what the best way would be to right this wrong, and came to the conclusion that I should be publicly humbled. It is one thing to privately admit your shortcomings, but it can be more powerful to share those shortcomings with many. I don’t want to hide behind the privacy of the door to my home, I want to come clean and shout from the mountain tops that I have done wrong by my husband and need to correct that. Many people have highlighted my strength through this tough time, but I know that when I am unable to be strong I can be hurtful and angry. These are the moments that I forget the gift that my partner is.
During times of crisis it is of utmost importance to come together with your loved ones and to be gentle with one another. It is SO hard when you have no one and nothing to lash out at, but it is unfair to use your partner as a metaphorical punching bag. We must be strong for one another because we have to get through this together. There are many people who experience life’s trials alone and that is all the more reason for those of us who are lucky enough to walk the path hand-in-hand to be steadfast and thankful for the gift we have been given.
This is my public apology to the man that I love and my call to everyone in a committed and loving relationship to recognize your gift.