You know when people say they married their best friend?
That’s so sweet. I love those stories. But I didn’t.
I have several “best friend” titles awarded to some really wonderful women in my life. I really look up to these women and know I can count on them for perspective, wisdom, venting, and laughing. In fact, several of my best friends are true role models—women who I want my daughters to be like—women who inspire me to be a better woman every day.
But my husband? He’s not my role model.
And I wouldn’t want him to be.
To be honest, my husband is now one of my best friends—my closest friend. We really do have a friendship along with being in love. I cherish this.
My husband is the polar opposite of me though. Me: peachy pale skin dotted with freckles, blue eyes, and red hair. My husband: tall dark and handsome. He is calm when I am fiery. He is steady when I am compulsive.
He is everything I am not.
I do not even dare try to be like him or aspire to be like him.
There was a time when I longed to be more even-toned as he…less people-pleasing and reliable (two of the traits I fell in love with). But that’s just not me.
Times that I tried to mirror his demeanor and punish myself for being ME, I found myself resentful of him.
How can he be so calm in such a time of stress?! I’m a disaster over here! He must not even care about ______ (me/my dream/our goals/the kids).
Why won’t he raise his voice when we fight?! If he would just show an ounce of passion, I’d feel so much more validated in my feelings…or I’d have one more thing to be mad at him for.
(Ouch, how low is that?)
How many times have I knocked his most cherished character traits because I didn’t understand them or thought they made us look bad to others?
That’s why we work so well together.
He keeps me grounded. He reminds me that our marriage (and our life) is for us, not others. He reminds me that being calm during an argument can help us make more clear decisions. While I see those reminders, I can continue being me—respecting his character and honoring our traits that complete one another.
So for our next, God-willing, 60+ years of marriage, I will daily remind myself:
“NO! My husband is not my role model.”
I will not and cannot be like him. He is not my superior to hold on a shelf and marvel at. He is my partner to study, to appreciate, to question, to aggravate, to love, to cherish…until death do us part.