That's me trying. Trying to appreciate the start of another week. But I'm sad. I had Sean home all week last week and now he's gone again.
We have a great time together, my best friend and I. We rarely get on one another's nerves, laugh and joke about anything and everything, and have fun like kids. Well - like we did as kids together! It doesn't really feel like we've ever grown up. And I'm sure a few of our friends would agree with that statement a little too quickly.
Some of you are probably doubting that we get along so well, and that such affection and fun would turn to bickering if given much more than that week together. Well, we've actually been tested on that.
When I was newly pregnant with Seth in 2002, Sean was severed from his job in a corporate buy-out. As a result, Sean was home for three straight months while looking for another job. We lived in Houston at the time, so there was no family near, no visits to parents' houses, no really going anywhere away from one another for any length of time.
Sprinkle in a few raging pregnancy hormones (okay a lot), stress from a job loss and wondering when another will come along and a baby on the way, worry about money issues, and two older boys who aren't the easiest kids to manage, and you've got yourself a mess. Right? Aren't all of these things individually some of the hottest issues that cause couples to argue and marriages to crack?
Yes, it was an incredibly stressful period of our lives. But we actually had a great time. We had so much fun getting to spend three straight months together. Sean got to spend some awesome time with the boys, and at the same time develop a greater appreciation for what it's like to be a stay-at-home parent - something I think all men should experience if their wives are stay-at-home moms!
We believe that we would be the perfect couple to run a business together, or work together on some venture because we get along so well, respect one another's opinions, appreciate one another's talents; and even though we may not see eye-to-eye all the time, we have a way of working through differences that works well almost all of the time. The rest of the time, I have a big iron skillet that I smack him over the head with; and then he's all like, "Wow, you're right. Your way would be so much better."
We talk a lot about how great that time together was - and can't wait to do it again . . . when we retire . . . or hit the PowerBall jackpot. Both of which seem like a complete impossibility right now.
This marriage that we have didn't come out of the box this way. It's taken hard work and compromise. We are acutely aware of the fact, and have been for a long time, that God drove this relationship from the beginning. No details now, but there really is no reasonable explanation at all as to why we should have even lasted past a few dates - let alone through an accidental pregnancy at 19, college, careers, cross country moves, job changes, difficult parenting issues, and the way he leaves his socks in various places around the house every night.
Another thing that we wholeheartedly believe in is sticking together like glue - clinging to one another in the onset of stress and difficulties. It's much harder to drown two people clinging together with all of their might than it is to pull someone under who is thrashing about all on their own.
But for some reason that only God knows (and we have fully appreciated for a long time now), we grew from dating 16-year-olds to now-still-happily-married 37-year-olds who still wink at one another across a room and can't wait to hug each other when we've been apart. We always say it's a miracle we grew in the same direction since we started out so early together.
So I'll take my weeks here and there that he can take off from work, hug on him during the few hours that he's home at night and on the weekends, and continue to send him silly messages during the day.
We know and appreciate that what we have is rare and that we are lucky. But it's not really luck at all. I believe we are exactly where we were intended to be.