Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Perspective is Everything- Children & Marriage

This was a draft from about a month and a half ago that I never finished.  It's time.

I just finished reading The Blessing of a B- by Wendy Mogel.  It's a sequel to The Blessing of a Skinned Knee.  I recommend both.  I can't say that I learned many new things, but she's a big help at putting things into perspective and there were a few belly laughs in the process.

Here's the perspective I gained...

Although my children have the ability to fully drive me crazy, and it seems even more so as they enter the teen years, perspective is everything.  The seemingly pathological mood changes are a learning process.  Understanding that helps when you want to throttle them.

It's led me to think before reacting.  It's not easier, but it does help.

Perspective on life has also led me to an even greater appreciation of Sean.  After almost 19 years, I am glad that we are able to share everything.  Too many people go through life burying true feelings.  It is harmful to all involved. 

It's not easy to share.  In a discussion with my kids about marriage and family, Keren said, "But Savta knew you and Abba had a forever marriage."  I like that term "a forever marriage," and yes, Sean and I do have one.  But that doesn't make it easy.  Marriage is both sides trying to give 100% all the time.  Sometimes we fall off the wagon.  Often I yell (Sean is not a yeller.  He'd rather steam).  Sometimes we're justified in our frustrations and feelings that things haven't divided so easily.  Sometimes, not so much.  One of my favourite recent days was when Sean walked into the room where I was working and said, "I know I'm wrong, and this isn't fair, but I feel I'm doing all the work.  Now you can laugh."  (The wording is wrong.  Maybe Sean will be able to correct this, but the general gist is there.)  We both knew that we were both working hard in the house.  But the feelings still needed to be aired, fair or not.  Holding it all in just leads to a lack of appreciation, distrust, and perpetuates a bad situation.

Adding on to that perspective is the appreciation for what we both do in the relationship and in the family.  We both travel at times, and the other has to make do as a single parent for a short time.  That perspective can really hit home.  There's something comforting about knowing when I (finally) do get to bed at night, there's someone to share it with, the ups and downs, the joys and heartaches, the frustrations and the wonders, even if that someone is sometimes the cause of them all.

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