I was mopping the bedroom floor with our brand new mop. Man, it was so dusty in there! I’ll start by saying, I was the first one to use this mop. I bought it two weeks ago, and when I pulled it out this morning my husband exclaimed with surprise, “I forgot all about you getting that!”
That kinda sets the theme for this story, y’all.
Back to the bedroom, it was so dusty because my husband rarely did the floors in there. Important to mention, at this point, is the fact my husband sweeps the living room and kitchen floors every single day. We have three children under eleven in the home, all day every day. He homeschools them. They eat about a billion meals a day at the bar, dropping a tsunami of enough crumbs to feed the state of Rhode Island. He does plenty of housekeeping. Remembering this as I mopped our dusty bedroom tile helped me mop with a happy pace rather than the rage against the housework moms can get while they pick up after other people. I mean, seriously, no one executed tasks like a woman!
As I went about my mopping my mind zigzagged through an off-day to-do list as it usually does. You know what I’m talking about, ladies. You have this one day, and you have a list of things you want to complete. The only question is, what gets crossed off and what gets moved to the next day.
Toilet paper, my brain shouted, like a dog who sees a squirrel. We needed it. I’d have to go get it. Why hadn’t my husband offered to go get it?! He knew I worked tomorrow. He knew I hated running errands on my last day off!
Like I had shot a mental arrow, he appeared through the doorway. “Babe, stop. You gotta work tomorrow. You need to chill.”
“That reminds me,” I replied, “I was wondering if you could go get some toilet paper from the store for us? I have been to the store the past two days, and my goal is to not leave the house today.”
“You betcha,” he replied happily. “I forgot we needed some.”
As I finished the last section of tile, already looking forward to reading a book in my favorite corner, I laughed to myself about men and women. In case you haven’t figured it out, we are way different. The problem came when we, as women, assume our men should be like us.
I remember it took me some time being married to learn this truth. Men do not think like women. Not at all. I know there are exceptions to all rules, so to speak, but for the most part, women are better at task completion and multitasking. Sorry, fellas, who may have gotten this far, if you’re offended, but this is how we ladies see it. Lol. We remember the things. We lay in bed at night thinking about the things. Meanwhile, hubby is snoring softly. Know what I’m saying? Point is, women remember things like needing toilet paper, sweeping dust bunnies out of the corner, or calling the cable company about last month’s bill.
I’m not sure why our brain, for the most part, works so differently from our male counterparts, but knowing my Heavenly Father like I do, I know it’s with good reason. I think of my tendency to sweat the small stuff, and how my husband’s chill and nonchalant manner, while sometimes exasperating to me, also helps to keep me anchored towards a kingdom mindset. When my anxious thoughts of things of this world want to run rampant, my spouse is the steady buoy of my mental storm. He’s the steady truth to my sometimes cray-cray, so if he forgets to try out the new mop, he’s forgiven.
One key I’ve found to a happy marriage is not expecting my husband to be like me or to be who I think he should be. He is who God made him to be. In times past, when those differences have been bothersome, I either pray to the One who can change a man’s heart better than me, or I have responded to my husband with love, patience, and understanding. In turn, he responds to me in love and service. Plus, I try and remind myself what’s really important in the long term. Is it a healthy relationship with the man I love or a ball of dirty socks in the floor? Is it always being right, or being humble and happy?
Every day in a relationship we are faced with how we will respond to the action (or lack thereof) by our partner. Yes, there are big issues that warrant discussion! But there are hundreds of tiny, insignificant matters that must be recognized as such so they don’t build up and become big issues. Often when faced with a small nuisance, I can combat that by recognizing my own faults and remembering the many, beautiful sacrifices my partner makes in our relationship.
He’s not like me. He doesn’t think like me. But that’s ok. He loves me. He loves me more than I’ve ever been loved. He takes such good care of me! He protects me, and he would lay down his life for me. If I ask, he does it. He waits on me hand and foot. Y’all, I’m blessed with what I consider to be the best husband and father to my children in the world. If I need to remind him we’re out of toilet paper, so be it. Plus, would I really want to be married to the male version of me?!