I looked over at Ben the other night and watched him checking Brigham's math homework. Then I saw Sam, snug as a bug, safe in his daddy's arms...with his pink blanket. Pink.
We need good dads in this world. There are days when I blow steam out of my ears about the way Ben handles a situation with the kids. And at the same time I'm constantly reminding myself that they need his "way" just as much as they need mine. They'll learn hard work, determination, and respect from Ben. They'll learn compassion, joy, and a love of the beauties of this world from me. These lists aren't all-inclusive, just areas that I see us emphasizing as we interact with our kids. I'd even say that at times our roles switch. Ben teaches them compassion when I'm about to ring their sweet little necks ("Poor Mommy, she's going crazy, let's just give her a minute to calm down...")! And they learn hard work from me as I make them move the furniture in the family room...AGAIN.
I don't want to take this for granted, Ben and I raising our kids together. I've noticed periods in our marriage when I didn't do all I could to nurture it and keep it strong. I was getting by. Marriages can get stale if you don't keep 'em fresh, you know?
The more time I spend with this guy, the more I'm learning that little efforts each day keep it strong. He's a person too, just like the kids, with needs and feelings. Honestly, it doesn't take much to make Ben happy (wink, wink). It's easy for me to get caught up thinking that because I'm with the kids all day, somehow I deserve more attention from him than he needs from me. It goes both ways. The more we look to each other's comforts, the happier we are.
The intricacies of loving. It's quite a journey. And in my case, it's not all downhill. Ben is a patient man. Bless him.