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Appreciating Our Husbands

Appreciating-Our-Husbands-imageRemember when I mentioned in this post a few days ago that marriage and motherhood have taught me that I am innately selfish …

Today I am writing about the importance of appreciating our husbands–especially while we are pregnant.

 

3 Reasons Why It’s Hard to Show Appreciation

10 months of pregnancy are some of the most trying times in our marriage, even if we don’t realize it right away.

Part of the reason might be because…

1. I have to be pregnant and he doesn’t. It seems unfair sometimes … if I focus on the difficult and negative things about pregnancy. Why do I have to go through all of this and he doesn’t? But our poor husbands have to put up with us being pregnant and we don’t have to put up with them being pregnant. Can you imagine? What if they were the ones complaining about every strange smell and demanding food cravings for 10 months? Yikes! Pregnancy is a lesson in patience and grace for all of us.

2. I don’t feel like myself. I don’t feel like the same person anymore. Sometimes I don’t feel attractive, sometimes I do. Sometimes I want to have sex, sometimes I don’t. At times, my emotions are all over the place. Other times, I feel really calm and collected while other people lose their patience. Today I might feel like being alone, tomorrow I might be desperate to get out of the house. My husband has to put up with all of these changes as well. How is he supposed to make plans if he doesn’t know what my mood will be that day?

3. I go into survival mode. All these instincts kick in that tell me to take care of myself: eat food. sleep. don’t overdo it. take it easy. eat more food. no, not that food. eat protein and vegetables. drink water. drink more water. cold icy water. cold icy water with lemon. You’ve been there too?

It could be that if I don’t take care of myself, I will be totally and completely sick and useless for the rest of the day. It could be that if I don’t eat the right food and drink enough water, my ankles will swell up and I won’t be able to walk–or take care of the kids–for the rest of the day. So there is an urgency to the messages my body is sending me during pregnancy.

Even in my 5th pregnancy, I have not learned to think of my husband’s needs at the same time that I am in survival mode.

I Appreciate Andy So Much

Thank God my husband is extremely easygoing and loving, because he has to put up with a lot! Like when I ask him to pick up something from the grocery store after he’s already in his pajamas. Or when I ask him to give the kids a bath (which is every night!) so that I can take some time to write. (He’s getting them out of the bath right now … what a sweetheart!)

I think the trouble comes in when I expect or demand him to help me, rather than asking politely. Sometimes I have to check myself and ask, “If this were my friend instead of my husband, would I ask her the same question in the same tone, with the same wording? Or would I ask the same question in a different way, with a kinder tone and without the demand that she say yes? After all, she is an adult with the right to say she can’t do it, right? Well so is Andy. In fact, he is even more valuable. He is my partner, my beloved. He has to put up with me every day! So I want to be a loving partner that he looks forward to seeing every day, not a nagging wife that he wants to avoid as much as possible.

Man, it took me 5 years of marriage to learn that. (We’ve been married over 11 years now, and the second half of our marriage has been much better than the first 5 years. Andy agrees!)

Last night I was thinking about how much I appreciate Andy. He has been loyal and encouraging through all 5 of my pregnancies. He has taken over parenting and dirty dishes when I can’t take it anymore. He has coached me through labor and delivery 4 (soon 5) times. He’s been there to cut the umbilical cord and hold each sweet little miracle, and he has been there for us every day of our kids’ lives, protecting, providing, loving us. What an amazing guy!

As wives, we are better off focusing on all the positive things about our husbands, and forgiving all the little hurtful things, or the things we have no control over. Choosing to be content, positive, and joyful is an easier way to live–for everyone. Keeping an appreciative attitude is especially important when we are pregnant and/or have little ones to care for. We are a team. Once you have kids, you are a team forever, whether you like it or not. By appreciating our husbands, we help the team succeed.

 

What Do You Appreciate About Your Spouse?

In honor of appreciating our husbands, I would love for everyone who reads this post to comment below (scroll down to where it says “Leave a Reply” or, if you are reading this as an email, click here) and write something you appreciate about your husband! Don’t be shy … just click and leave a quick note. Watch how love grows in your heart toward your husband today. Other comments are welcome as well. Any guys reading this? Comment with what you appreciate about your wife!

xo,

Chelsea

 

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