Saturday, June 27, 2009

He Came Home

Thursday morning was a rough one for me, mostly caused, I'm sure, by late pregnancy hormones and discomforts, but exacerbated by, of all things, our air conditioner not working. So far this season, we've gotten along just fine with open windows and ceiling fans (and I love the fresh air!); but that morning, after feeling hot all night, I woke up and decided to run the air conditioner for the first time this year. Unfortunately, it didn't work (although it made a noise like it was working); and the temperature in the house continued to rise instead of fall. Really, it wasn't a big deal; but like the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back, it contributed to my feelings of gloom and doom on that morning until I was ready to throw my hands up in despair and crawl back into bed to hide from the world!

I sent Jeff several emails that morning; and he, being the very wise husband that he is, read between the lines to recognize that emotionally I was fried. A little after noon, I was sitting on the couch and had just finished reading Sylvester and the Magic Pebble to Josiah and David (a book that made Josiah emotional...and me, too, a little bit) when I heard the distinctive sound of Jeff's Jeep coming up the driveway. My hero, riding his gallant steed, had come to rescue me! I had not asked him to leave work to come home, but his intuition must have told him that his presence was exactly what I needed to revive my spirits. Plus, he wanted to check the air conditioner. :)

When he came in the house, Josiah, David, and I were still sitting together on the couch; and Jeff came over to greet us. As he leaned down to hug and kiss me, I started crying; and Josiah, being surprised, asked, "Why are you crying?" I, of course, couldn't answer through my choked-up throat; but Jeff said simply, "Because she loves me." And Josiah said to me in an astonished voice, "You don't normally do that," which made me laugh through my tears.

Later that night, I was thanking Jeff again for being willing to take time off work to swiftly come to my aid that day; and he said, "I didn't do much."

"You came home," I answered him. "You came home."

The next day, I was reading a short article from Focus on the Family in which Dr. James Dobson answered the question, "What do you consider to be the greatest threat to the stability of families today?"

He wrote:

It would be a phenomenon that every marriage counselor deals with regularly. The scenario involves a vulnerable woman who depends on her husband to meet her emotional needs and a workaholic man who has little time for family responsibilities.

Year after year she reaches for him and finds he's not there. She nags, complains, cries, and attacks him for his failures--to no avail. He is carrying the load of three men in his business or profession and can't figure out how to keep that enterprise going while providing what his wife needs.

As time goes by, she becomes increasingly angry, which drives him even further into his workaday world. He is respected and successful there. And thereafter he is even less accessible to her.

Then one day, to her husband's shock, this woman reaches a breaking point and either leaves him for someone else or files for divorce. It is a decision she may live to regret and one that often devastates her children--although by then the marriage is long gone. It was such a preventable disaster, but one that millions of other families will be victimized by in coming months.

As I read this, I thought again--for the umpteenth time--how blessed I am to have a husband who is sensitive to my emotional needs, even when those "needs" are the crazy ups-and-downs of a very pregnant woman.

When Jeff said Thursday night, "I didn't do much," I could have answered him with, "Well, you tried to fix the air conditioner...and when that didn't work, you called the repair company...and you kept Josiah and David happily busy with 'helping' you with your project...and you brought a smile to Tobin's face as he was eating his lunch...and you changed the atmosphere of our home by bringing new energy to it...and you helped me recover from my doldrums so I could have a much-better-than-the-morning afternoon and evening...and you showed the boys and I that we are more important than your job, and you're willing to sacrifice earning potential for time with us...and I didn't even ask you to do it..." But in the end, it's simpler than that:

He came home.


Kristen said...

OK, so I'm not even pregnant and I'm crying. It's so awesome to have a husband who knows what we need even when we don't say it. Similarly, the other day I was having a rough day and Adam had a 1/2 gallon of ice cream delivered. It came at the most perfect time. Yeah for wonderful husbands!

Valerie said...

Well you made this pregnant lady cry. I loved Josiahs reaction to your tears. Funny boy.

I 2nd your other commenter Yay for wonderful husbands! :)

Sally said...

Yes! It means so much to me that my husband is here for me all the time. I can't imagine what my life would be like if he had to leave to go to work everyday, instead of just going down into the basement office. I'm really glad Jeff could come home when you needed him. God has tremendously blessed your family!

Misty said...

Precisely how I felt when Chris showed up at the midwives office literally minutes after I called him crying with the news that I need a C-section when I thought he would meet me at home. Glad Jeff was able to be there when you needed him!

Morning said...

What a special man! Making time to show your love is so important for everyone. It seems that Jeff has his priorities right -- what use is all the money and prestige in the world if your family is not happy?

Debbie in CA : ) said...

Sweet, sweet, sweet. I am married to my knight in shining armour, I am definitely NOT pregnant, and still he comes home when he hears my inaudible cries. True love. I celebrate with you. It is a WONDEFUL way to live your life in a world full of broken junk and disappointments all around. You are blessed sweet girl (and you know it and appreciate it). Thanks for sharing it so I can refresh my own memory.

first things first said...


Margie said...

This post made me cry.