When I was still single and without children, I found myself dreaming what God had in store for me. I was certain it would be the perfect man and 2.5 perfect children. Now that I am married with children, I realize no man is perfect. And about those ideal 2.5 children, God blessed me with the extra .5.
One of the biggest challenges in my life is being the wife God has called me to be while raising three kids. Ephesians 5:23-24,32 clearly lays out how a wife should be like the Church and submit to her husband as the Church should to Christ. That sounded easy enough to me at first. After all, I do love my husband. But then these little humans came along who call me Mom and demand that I feed them on a meal-by-meal basis. The only submitting I was doing was by catering to their every need, and my poor husband was eating Ramen Noodles and going to bed alone every night. I could not blame him for feeling neglected. At times my husband would get the most horrible attitude while consuming himself in Facebook and YouTube videos. He would do this during our alone time as well.
I knew I had a problem of imbalance in my life. To put it succinctly, I had to ask, “How do I make my husband feel loved and needed while running crazy after kids all the time?”
I wish I had a simple answer to that question, but I don’t. There are some days I feel like the worst wife in the world. Then I start beating up on myself. Add to that the sleep deprivation that comes from having three children, and I find myself griping and picking apart my neglected husband. That makes me feel even worse, as if surely I am the only woman to ever nag her husband.
I have learned that at this point I have to stop and pray for strength. God can give us super strength. I am talking about cape-wearing, flying-through-the-air strength that we had no idea we were capable of having. Psalm 29:11 is my go-to Bible verse in these times. Sometimes I scream out loud, “Lord give me strength and peace that only You can provide!”
I think He hears me better if I yell. So go ahead and yell it. I promise you will feel better.
While you are flying around saving the world from snotty noses and lost shoes, encourage your husband to help with the kids. After all, God blessed him with being a father. That will make your husband feel like a super husband and dad to know he was able to relieve you of some stress. He may even enjoy getting to help out while playing cowboys and Indians with the kiddos.
After all the yelling, helping, and playing, you, your husband’s beautiful bride, need to stop everything and set apart a special time for him. My husband and I try to sneak a dinner date in at least twice a month. Those are the times we remind each other of our value. Do not hesitate to remind your wonderful man why you married him and why you want to grow old with him.
Hug and embrace each other daily. You may not have time to talk about your day, but a hug only takes a second, and the physical touch of your spouse will lift your spirits. A woman may be taught that a man is always to initiate physical contact, but this is your marriage, not a courtship. Love on your husband like it’s the last time. Kiss him every day like you mean it. Find out your husband’s love language and encourage him to do the same for you.
When the day has been long and you feel defeated in your marriage because of motherhood, chin up! This is only a season of life. When the world has gotten the best of you, look into the eyes of the man that vowed to be with you through better or worse. In his eyes, you will find a calmness that reminds you that your love for each other will surpass all of the chaos.