It Takes Two
House of Happy
It’s 7:00 PM and I’m standing at our sink filled with dishes. To be honest, not just dinner dishes, but lunch and breakfast as well. I have a clean load in the dishwasher that needs to be unloaded. Shit. I am going to be here a while. I close my eyes and my mind rushes to a million things I’d rather be doing. And it’s not what you expect, for me, it’s not about the glamour. I relish in the small moments, the little things. Those are everything. As I’m scrubbing the dishes, I try my best to fade out background noise that consists of the new Cruella on Disney Plus, and 3 very tired, crabby kids. Because, well, it’s summer, the days are longer and we tire easily from all the magic that this season brings. The sunshine, the pool days, the smell of bar-b-q, fresh cut grass and wild flowers. And then into the night…the flashes of fireflies, the owls talking, the cicadas chirping. Nights gazing at the stars explaining what they are to 3 sets of wandering eyes yearning to learn more about the world. But, not tonight, because, let’s get real, not every night of our lives is Snapchat or Facebook-worthy. That is not reality. Not every day is going to feel like the best day of our lives. Today was messy, and today was really hard. I have no shame in that. This is a big step for me. I always felt admitting it was weak. But now I encourage every parent to take a deep breathe, continue reading, and know that you are not alone. It is hard. All of it. Marriage is hard, being a parent is hard, building a family is hard. But, so cliché, the absolute most beautiful part of life. Because who would we be without these beautiful mini versions of ourselves and the partner we created them with? And for that, we need to be our best selves in order to be the best for those that love and need us.
Now, back to the dishes. See where my mind goes while I’m doing chores? As I’m watching the fireflies flicker through my kitchen window, I’m really feeling the stress from the day. From work, to the kids, our house, the animals, all of it. I’m feeling rushed as the minutes pass on the clock and I just wish I could snap my fingers and have it all done to tuck the kids in and have some time to decompress for the day. As I gaze through my kitchen window wishing today wasn’t so hectic and wanting to be more engaged, I saw the reflection of my husband taking the trash out of the bin behind me. As much as I wanted to grab him, hug him, and give him the slightest bit of hope for the last of our day, I just couldn’t. In the moment I couldn’t even do that for myself. I mentally wanted to, in my mind, but nothing on my body seemed to work. I let my stress get the best of me, and I was letting it win. I was tired from not being able to stop my thoughts from the day and just relax. The day was over, but I wasn’t letting myself actually feel that. All I truly wanted to do was feel close to my husband, but my mind wouldn’t stop and I couldn’t find the off button. How can I possibly be everything? To everyone? And everything? All the time? It is so important to me to never disappoint my family. My thoughts continue, my mind babble runs on. He sees I’m struggling, and, by this point I realize the chaotic, witching hour background noise has settled. The kids have full bellies, are freshly bathed, lotioned and now all cuddled up with their stuffies, drifting asleep to Cruella, because some days, like today, story time, books and nursery rhymes just don’t cut it.
He pushes me into a running hot shower and I strip and jump in. The hot water feels amazing and I don’t want to get out until he comes in to tell me the kids are now in bed. Sound machines on, covers pulled up, all 3 sets of wandering eyes closed and peacefully in dream land. Now, I am feeling the calm, and it’s not just due to the hot water. I dry off, wrap my towel around me and he grabs my hand to lead me somewhere. The front door opens, night sky awaiting, and I’m sitting in a rocking chair under a blanket of stars with a beautiful, pre-rolled joint in my hand. As I inhale, I can taste the earthy citrus terpenes of the Rainmaker by Sinse. This strain is one of my favorite hybrids, because while it relaxes my body and mind, it gives me the right amount of energy to enjoy the rest of my day and engage. I feel the elephant of stress move from my chest, down my arms, and exit through my fingertips. Ahhhhh, deep breathe in, deep breathe out. Is this real life? But, yes! It can be. And it should be. I’m going to sit next to my hot, so very handsome husband, smoke this joint, and let everything else go. Now that my focus is less on stress and more in the moment, I’m going to talk to him about my day, good and bad, and listen to all of his day’s endeavors. We will talk about future goals and dreams and brainstorm all the ways to make it all come true. We will cuddle, kiss, touch and love….all the things. And then I’m going to fall asleep next to him, only to wake up feeling my best self, physically, mentally, and emotionally…..It felt damn good.
Waking up the next day, I play out the prior night in my head and simply smile. I wake up a happy, healthy woman, ready to take on my day as a working mom of 3 kids, 4 dogs, 4 ducks, 2 chickens, 2 leopard geckos, and 4 opossums. BUT most importantly, above all, a wife. Because it takes two. I look forward to the end of the day with my husband and seek comfort in knowing I’m coming home to a person who understands me and supports me in all aspects of life. Marriage thrives on communication. The root of most marital problems and failures is a lack of understanding, but, most importantly, the willingness to do so. We wake up every day and choose our person all over again. Again and again, day after day. If it didn’t take work, it wouldn’t and couldn’t be so great. After 14 years together, we still belly laugh, joke like kids, and fall back in love over and over again. Finding our way through the good times and bad, and what works for us. To be stronger, together. Cannabis is something we bond over, and something special because it’s ours. Parenthood has a way of leaving us with very little privacy and not much time that is solely ours. That makes this time with him bring life to my soul. And it’s all mine….BUT don’t forget, it always takes 2, friends.