Recently, Tim and I were watching an episode of King of Queens. Carrie (the wife) was trying to hide the fact that she was happy with her job from her husband, because, for some reason, it bothered him. I turned to Tim and said, “I can’t imagine having a partner who would be so unsupportive.” A few seconds later, I added, “Oh, wait. Yes I can.”
I was married to my ex-husband for over twenty years, and he rarely (if ever) encouraged me to pursue my goals or dreams. In fact, he often tried to make me feel like a fool for evening thinking about whatever it was. I remember a time when I wanted to take gemology courses. His reaction was something like, “What? Are you crazy?!” (By the way, that reaction is what finalized my decision to go ahead and take the courses.)
In almost six years, I cannot remember any instance where Tim tried to discourage me from trying something I wanted to try. In fact, there are times I would have talked myself out of it if he hadn’t encouraged me (going to college is an excellent example).
In that time, Tim has also apparently helped me begin to forget what it was like to live with someone who, for whatever reason, found it difficult to be supportive. That realization felt damn good, and made me even more grateful for the relationship that Tim and I have. It isn’t perfect (though it is at times!), but it’s so much healthier than what I’ve experienced in my past.
Life is so much better when two people work together, believe in each other, and encourage one another to pursue what makes them happy. That is love.
Someone shared this quote with me recently, and this seems like an appropriate time and place to share it:
“Every woman’s heart has different instructions. They’re written in her eyes, in her smile, through her actions, and in her tears. She just has to find someone who cares enough to read them.”
I am blessed. He cares enough to read them–and he not only understands them, he’s helping me to rewrite them.