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Therapy and sanity for ordinary parents of special kids.

I Promise to Love and Honor You All The Dysfunctional Days of My Life (by Gina)

"Mike, I know you love me, but can you hug me a little easier? I can't breathe."

A few years ago, my college friends and I were together for a gathering when one of them shared some exciting news.

“You guys! I think I’m finally in love!  I’m so happy I can’t even eat.  He’s all I think about. I hope this feeling never, ever goes away. It won’t, will it?”

The rest of us (who had been married  for several years and had young children) looked at each other and burst out laughing (not before serving ourselves another piece of cheesecake).

“Oh you’ll still think of him. You’ll think of smothering him with a pillow when he snores and you can’t sleep.”

I joke, but when I came across this article today (see link below), I realized that I sometimes take my husband for granted.  It’s not that I don’t love him; I love him very much. He’s thoughtful, loving, handsome, and fun to be around.  But with the day-to-day stress of raising two special children, I’m too busy counting prescription pills to count the ways I love him. In fact, some days I’m so stressed I barely even notice him.

“Gina your husband is a very handsome man.”

“Thank you. I think so too. I really fell for his brown eyes.”

“Ah, Gene, aren’t his eyes blue?”

Sometimes, I even forget all the wonderful things he does for me — like the fact that in nearly 20 years of marriage, I’ve never had to wash a kitchen floor.

“Mike, let me  wash the floor. I’m perfectly capable of doing it.”

“OK, but you do know that you’re mopping with mouthwash?”

Or that he’s always willing  to rescue me and my neighbor when we get into trouble. “All right Thelma and Louise, stay at the bar. I’ll come pick you up.”

I don’t even appreciate that he’s constantly complimenting me.  “Gene, I really like your hair like that? What did you do?”

“I combed it.”

Yeah, I’m pretty embarrassed to admit that instead of focusing on all the positive things he does for me, I often focus on the negative.”

“You should get home from work sooner!”

“You were the one who wanted kids. I was content playing golf.”

“You have it so easy, getting up and going to work all day in your high pressure job.”

“You don’t know how lucky you have it. You can go to the Men’s room alone.”

And sometimes when he’s actually looking to spend time alone with me, I don’t even pick up the signals.

“Come on Gene, let’s take a walk together  to the mailbox.”

So, in 2011, I’m vowing to spend more time thinking of the man who asked me to marry him because.. well.. he’s wonderful…and…more importantly, he’s the only who asked.

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5 Responses to I Promise to Love and Honor You All The Dysfunctional Days of My Life (by Gina)

  1. Aimee January 23, 2011 at 8:47 pm #

    awww this is so nice and so true. I am guilty of the same thing My hubby has been my rock for the entire process of helping our son and I totally take him for granted. This is a wonderful resolution to make.

  2. RUTH KHEIR January 24, 2011 at 1:23 am #

    WHENEVER MY HUSBAND AND I TAKE TIME FOR OURSELVES WHICH IT HARDLY HAPPENS, I ALWAYS END UP TALKING ABOUT OUR SPECIAL SON. SHOULD I CHANGE THE CONVERSATION AND TALK ABOUT OTHER THINGS? MY HUSBAND WORKS ALOT AND TRAVELS MOST OF THE TIME BECAUSE OF HIS JOB.

  3. admin January 24, 2011 at 3:25 am #

    Ruth, we do that, too, but I think as long as you can have an honest and open discussion, it’s a good thing.

  4. Janet Foster January 27, 2011 at 1:22 am #

    Well, I don’t know what I would have done without my husband. We’ve been together for 14 years. Not all of them legally married, but I married him in my heart the day I realized he really really liked being with me. He’s NOT the father of my very special son, but he is the only Dad my son knows. My son’s father committed suicide when my son was 3 yrs old. It was after his death that my son was diagnosed with a brain disorder. My husband, Bill, came into our lives when my son was 6 yrs old and has been with us ever since. I made sure that before Bill moved in he knew about my son’s brain disorder, but he didn’t care, he wanted to be part of my life and in his words “You’re a package deal, honey. That means if I accept you I have to accept your kids, no matter what. What kind of a man would I be if I only wanted you and not your kids!” So, together, WE raised my sons and a couple of his kids and it’s ironic that all the kids that lived in our house for any length of time all turned out OK. Including my special son who now lives on his own despite the prognosis he was given at age 11 (I was told he’d be institutionalized the rest of his life). It wasn’t always easy and we didn’t always agree but we muddle through it and we know that all the kids that lived with us over the years appreciate and love us despite our imperfections. Bill is my soul mate, my best friend, the best Dad ever to my kids and of course the best husband any woman could want. For the last 14 years I wake up every day and tell him he’s the BEST. That’s short for the BEST THING THAT EVER HAPPENED TO ME!!! And he always will be.

  5. Janet Foster January 27, 2011 at 3:22 pm #

    @ RUTH K. I agree with the comment from admin about having an honest and open discussion about your special kid(s), HOWEVER, I would like to remind all parents raising special kids, that they too need to have that special time with each other that focuses just on your relationship as couple, otherwise the parents can lose sight of one another in the chaos of raising children, even healthy ones, and it’s especially needed for parents/couples raising special children. As a NAMI Basics Teacher in my area I have come across many mothers that had their husband or boyfriend/father of child leave because they lost sight of their relationship. I found with my husband that it doesn’t necessarily mean that it has to be a lot of time, and sometimes all it takes is a very heart felt comment about how much you appreciate your spouse. Parents need time to themselves too so that they can always move forward as a united couple during the difficulties that come with an ill child.

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