Monday, July 11, 2011
Being Honest With My Husband
His week was slammed with the holiday, helping move his parents and some friends, preparing for musical guests at church, working on writing a Christmas production and a commissioned piece for a church choir in Virginia, all on top of trying to stay above water in his job responsibilities.
I knew he was stressed. I knew he was pulled in many, many directions. I tried to be supportive and understanding and patient. But come the weekend, I was feeling neglected.
My head told me how stupid it was. My heart missed my husband.
I worked hard to push it aside, to do the next thing, to give him some space, but he could tell something was wrong. He asked, as he does often, if I was okay. I tried to blame it on being tired (which I was) and hormones (which is my catch-all scapegoat), and he accepted it, but kept asking.
Are you sure you're all right?
And though I wanted to be strong and self-sufficient and low-maintenance, though I wished I could be above such childishness, I finally admitted how I felt.
He listened, acknowledged both my feeling of neglect and embarrassment for being that way. He apologized and assured and went off to his next responsibility.
And I felt better.
Not because he dropped everything to spend time with me. Not because I suddenly became his #1 priority of the day, but because he heard me and I wasn't holding on to something stupid any more. He knew what was going on in my head, no matter how ridiculous. Somehow the honesty put us on the same page. It eliminated the guessing. We knew the deal and dealt with it.
It makes me wonder how many times I've missed this kind of openness because I've wanted to save face and not appear needy. Does my desire to be tough take away from his desire to protect me? Is it good for him to know I need him? Does it help me to admit it? If I let myself be vulnerable, will it kick in his innate desire to safeguard me?
I want to be independent. I want him to need me, not vice versa. It seems more powerful to be the one needed, instead of the needy. But if we're both determined to show ourselves un-needy, what bridges the gap to bring us together?
Yeah. I don't like it that I need my husband as much as I do, but I'm willing to admit it, for the coming together it provides.