I spent over 20 years dreaming up the perfect husband, compiled of characteristics from Disney movies and romance novels, he would have it all. He would be the perfect combination of a gentleman — honest, trustworthy, caring — with the looks of Channing Tatum, he would be every girl’s dream man. When I met my husband nearly 5 years ago, I was shocked at how quickly I fell in love with him. Although he doesn’t look anything like Channing Tatum, he had all of the qualities I was looking for. Falling in love with him was effortless and unexpected and we were engaged only after 6 months. On my 23rd birthday, I married my best friend in a dream wedding and shortly after, we purchased our first home. There were times I pinched myself to make sure it was all real. I wasn’t sure how life could get any better until we welcomed our first son last year; he seemed to fill an emptiness that we didn’t even realize was there.
So while my life sounds like a fairytale on paper, here is where the problem comes in. I am flawed. That is difficult for me to admit because I would consider myself a perfectionist but there it is in black and white…I have issues. As a product of divorced parents, I have the expectation that I will fail at my marriage. I put up walls, make a small issue into something bigger and I pick fights with my husband for no reason. I do not know if I do this because it’s all I know or if I am guarding myself from the pain I watched my parents endure through their divorce. Regardless, I find myself focusing on the negative, which was heightened drastically after my son was born and I experienced a bout of postpartum depression. I wanted to hate my husband for everything he did…he couldn’t soothe my son’s crying right, he didn’t help me enough around the house, he didn’t do things exactly how I wanted, etc. I was miserable and I wanted him to be miserable. Deep down I thought if I could make him miserable enough, he would leave and I could just get the inevitable over with. I started to take on everything myself. I made up excuses as to why I wanted to do it all but part of me was preparing to be alone…with how I treated him, I didn’t think it would be long.
My husband has to be the most patient man to walk the Earth because his love for me never wavered. When I would have an especially difficult day with my son, he would take over after a long day at work, tell me how great of a mother I am and that he loved me very much. Although I wanted my negative mood and depression to be his fault, the truth was it wasn’t his fault at all. I was struggling with my own identity and self-worth and with his constant support, I decided it was time to stop feeling like a bump on a log and get my life together. I have since made an effort to focus on the positive and I can’t believe how blind I was to how amazing my husband is. He makes an effort to help me cook dinner and pick up the kitchen afterwards, he gives me time to myself when I need it, he lifts me up when I am down and watching him with my son and witnessing how much he loves him, is an image that will forever be engrained in my mind. Although he’s not the best at planning anniversary dinners or birthday parties, he still surprises me with flowers on random days and sends me unexpected texts saying how much he loves me.
I can’t believe how lucky I am. In a society where divorce is prominent and people are quick to hurt their loved ones, I was blessed with a man who gives me hope of a happy ending. While he’s not perfect, he’s perfect for me and although I still struggle with keeping a positive attitude, I know he is always there to lean on and help me through. He is my best friend, the most amazing father and my soul mate and I still pinch myself to make sure my life isn’t a dream. To all of the women and moms who have days they hate their husbands, try to look at what he does right instead of what he does wrong, thank him for loving you and find new reasons daily for why you fell in love with him in the first place. Hopefully it will change your life as it has mine.