Look at you, over there buried under our three children. Because once you’re home, all they want to do is be in your shadow or in your lap. You sit there as if you have no idea what you have done to me. As if this is just happenstance.
But I need you to know, you did this. You took the broken girl and you were so patient dismantling that wall she’d built so thick and so tall. You took my heart with the utmost care and stitched every broken space. You trudged through the landmines laid by men you’ll never meet. And with each new threat, you carefully brought it to light, disarmed it, and drew me closer.
You make this house a home. Coming in from work, tired and often defeated. But they see something so different; they listen for your door in the afternoon, the turn of the key, and their faces light up so much the sun looks like a mere nightlight. I watch you as you breathe deep and you give even more. You all dance your way through the kitchen. You roll up your sleeves and start dishes all while playing “bubbles” with the kids. They gleefully beg to help wash dishes with you and while we all know it will make your job longer, you step back and let them wiggle between you and the sink. And those are the moments that you’re teaching them how to be little people. You did this.
The nights I get to do bedtime routine, I’m constantly reminded that Dad does it a different way. But it’s not said with malice, no it’s a wistfulness of the fun you bring. And when you take them back for read aloud, I hear their peals of laughter, I hear your voices as they change between characters. I know your mind is racing with all the things that still need to be done, but you’re all in in that moment, so they never know. And I watch as they fall asleep, wrapped around you, sinking into the safety you provide. You did this.
Night after night, you push yourself and encourage me as we walk through the things that need to be done; laundry, toys, our side hustle. And these are the moments you allow yourself to break a little. And we have sailed some storms. Because sometimes it’s just enough to be strong in the broken places. We trudge through valleys and we cling to each other in the moments of striking fear. But you told me you’re here, locked in for the long haul. And after twelve years I’m starting to believe you, because you’re steadfast. And I need you to know I see it. I see all that you’ve done to make this house a home. I see the work you’ve put into our marriage. I see your strength when all you see is weakness. I see how happy we all are because of all you do. And I just need you to know, you did this.-