I could complain about my husband. I sometimes want to. I have complained before.
The problem is he's a school teacher. Perhaps you think we're lucky. Andy finishes work at 3 pm every day and has 12 weeks holiday every year. Sounds fantastic, doesn’t it? All that time together. Except it’s not that great at all.
Andy is one of those teachers who is dedicated to his students and colleagues. He spends his evenings planning exceptional lessons. He goes to meetings before and after school. He’s a sports coach and runs after-school activities twice a week. He meets with parents and speech therapists and other professionals in an attempt to help the struggling members of his class. He has professional learning courses to attend. There is always something that keeps Andy from arriving home on time. His holidays are just as busy.
And I don't see as much of Andy as I'd like.
It is the evening. Sophie is putting mats and cutlery and glasses on the dining room table. “Will Dad be home in time for dinner?” she asks, wondering if she should set a place for him.
“I don’t know,” I reply. “He didn’t say he had anything extra to do at school this afternoon.” The phone rings. “I bet that’s Dad now.” I am right: It's Andy.
“Where are you? I thought you’d be home on time tonight.”
“I’ve been closing down everyone’s computers. A teacher needed her light bulb changing.”
“Doesn’t anyone else know anything about computers? Doesn’t your school have a handyman who changes light bulbs?”
The problem is Andy never says no. Everyone brings their problems to him, knowing he’ll fix them.
I am all ready to start ranting and raving. I want to jump up and down and say, “Hey! What about me? When am I going to get some of your time?” But just as I am opening my mouth to begin, God knocks me soundly over the head with a thought that seals my lips instantly:
Look at the man you are married to. He’s generous and loving and kind. It doesn’t matter how tired or busy he is, he will never refuse to help. He comes home from work and then what does he do? He turns around and goes out again with the girls, taking them to their evening activities. There’s not many men like him about.
What if instead of Andy, I was married to a mean-spirited and self-centred man?
I decide I am very blessed.
It’s evening again. Just as Sophie is laying the knives and forks on the table, the phone rings. It’s Andy.
“I know I’m late but I’m on my way,” he assures me. "I’ll be home in plenty of time to take the girls to choir practice.” Then he adds, “I have something for you.”
Something for me?
“The assistant principal gave me some chocolates to thank me for all my help. They’re for you.”
I could complain about my husband. I sometimes want to. But I’m not going to. He is a wonderful man.