Sunday, March 6, 2011


You know how life has ebbs and flows? Everything is great (until it's not). There's enough money (and then there's not). Everyone is healthy (and then they're not). I think marriage is a lot that way. It waxes and wanes with the seasons. Some days are unspeakably happy; others-- you wonder if God truly can give you sufficient grace to be married to this man for the rest of your life. Right now is a truly joyous season in my marriage. I'm not sure that Chris would say the same thing. But for me, I am feeling so grateful that Jesus has given Chris to me.

Being a mom of two little ones can often be an unflattering role. I lose my patience daily, I am unkind when I don't mean to be, I bribe my kids with lollipops, and am often completely inconsistent in discipline. Chris comes home to two three cranky girls, often unbathed and in stained, unmatching clothing-- all of whom are stuck to him like little leeches from the time he walks in the door. "Daddy, let's wrestle!", "Daddy, can I play the smashing ants game on your phone?", "Daddy, I HUNGY!!", "Honey, PLEASE take these kids from me-- I need a break!", "Babe, can you take the trash out?" etc. etc, ad nauseum, world without end, amen and amen.

We're a needy bunch, us Strayer women. And when you add pregnancy to the mix, it's like the perfect storm. Let me preface this by saying that, for the most part, I have had relatively easy pregnancies. And for the most part, I try to make a conscious effort to not be that pregnant lady-- the one who's always complaining about being nauseous or swollen or sore or miserable. 'Cause truly-- the ends more than justify the means. And in addition-- we know several families who are dealing with the frustration and aching sadness of infertility... or the blinding pain of losing a child... and I remember that I have no room to complain about swollen ankles. That said, pregnancy does have a way of humbling you; you physically cannot do all that you would wish, you're tired all the time (but can't sleep), and your normally-oh-so-very-steady hormones are all over the place. It's a (God-given) reminder of our limitations and our fragile humanity.

I need Chris. Desperately. Need him for the mundane "man-chores", and need him to hold me up when I'm feeling weak. He has been such an extension of Christ's grace to me; he comes home from work, exhausted (I mean, he works three jobs, after all!) and still listens to us, plays with us, laughs with us. He gives me needed time away from the girls, and plans special little projects and "daddy dates" to the utter delight of our children (raising ducklings, Chris? Really??). He's always working on projects to make our home more beautiful and functional; he picks up the slack when I am too tired to finish my tasks. He doesn't complain when the house is a wreck, or when dinner is peanut butter and jelly (again) or when all we have to eat in the house is eggs and lollipops. In fact, he just doesn't complain at all.

I wrote earlier that I am not sure Chris would agree that this is a blissful time in our marriage. Though pregnancy can be difficult for women, I think that it is often just as difficult for their husbands. And not for nothing-- but I am the one who is being served by all of Chris's thoughtfulness and care. He's the one who is constantly putting aside his own agenda, his desires, his plans--- laying down his very life for his family. I am intensely grateful for my husband, and I am glad I have the rest of my life to "pay him back" for his attentiveness and compassion for me in this season.

Just as soon as my ankles aren't so friggin' swollen. :)


nanajobx said...

Chris.. you get some points for this one :)

Parmer Clan said...

So eloquently written. We get way more than we deserve in so many ways, don't we???

Julie Garner said...

I love this! And I love YOU!!! You are a wonderful and wise woman...not to mention, very funny! Chris + Melody=some of my favorite peoples!!!

ctf said...

love. :) I needed something positive to overshadow the crap today. This was it.