I am a fundamentally selfish, lazy, mean, and prideful person. I have to fight every single day against these tendencies. Some days I am more successful than other days, but there is always that struggle going on within me, and I know it will be there for the rest of my life. I’m aware that everyone has faults, that everyone has struggles, but it’s easy to forget that sometimes, especially when I’m around those people who seem to have a natural goodness of heart. Especially since my husband is one of those people.
I knew when I married him that he’d be good to me. You’d know it too if you met him and saw the gentleness in his eyes, the way his face softens when he looks at me. You’d know it if, like me, you’d been with him for six years and seen that at his worst he is frustrated or irritable, and never treacherous or mean.
In James there is a verse that goes, “Show me your faith without works, and I will show you the faith that underlies my works.” This can be applied to Michael’s love for me, I think. He doesn’t try to convince me that he loves me without showing it. He doesn’t have to convince me because he shows it so well.
This past weekend, when I was exhausted from nightly performances, we couldn’t go to our regular Mass at our parish because it lasts until 12:45pm and I had to be on campus at that time to get ready for a matinee performance. I had suggested that we go, rather, to my school’s 10:00am Mass, but I agreed to attend the 8:45am at our parish because Michael wanted to so much. However, when Michael woke me up on Sunday morning at 7:30 so I could start getting ready for Mass, I was whiny enough that he said, “You know what? Let’s just go to 10:00 Mass at school.” I went back to sleep, and he woke me an hour later for breakfast, complete with hot cinnamon rolls and a steaming cup of tea.
Did you get that? He had already gotten out of bed and showered so that we could go to Mass he really wanted to go to, and then when I showed a little bit of resistance gave up on what he wanted to do, did not complain about having gotten up much earlier than he would have needed to, and even made breakfast for me.
The crazy thing about this is that it’s not out of the ordinary for him. He treats me like this every day. I need more time to get ready than he does, but he will routinely get out of bed and shower first so that I can be woken by a kiss from him rather than by a shrieking alarm. He brings me a glass of water every night before bed. He makes tea for me, and knows exactly how long to let it brew (five minutes for a cup of decaf, three minutes for a cup of regular). He fills the humidifier and runs the dishwasher. Since we got married, I have never taken out a bag of trash.
Am I a little bit of a princess? Possibly. Is motherhood, once I finally get there, going to be hard because I’ll have to start doing things myself? Almost certainly. Do I deserve all the goodness that Michael heaps on me daily? Almost certainly not. But please don’t accuse me of being ungrateful. I am grateful, so much so that my heart swells when I think of my husband’s tender love for me. I tell him that I am thankful, and I kiss him and cling to him and try to show him in a thousand little ways how much I appreciate him. I’m probably not doing it enough, but with a guy this wonderful, who could?