I shoveled the driveway this afternoon. Before you say, "Big deal. Everyone in Minnesota shoveled their driveway today," let me explain. Husband is the snow shoveler, the one who makes sure that that walk is salted so that I don't slip and who leaves my snow boots by the front door. He is the one who downloads the weather apps to ensure we are prepared with enough layers and that there is a snow brush in my car. Before Husband, my father and brother always handled the snow duties. I shoveled the driveway this afternoon for love.
Husband and I had a bit of a disagreement today regarding communication. He was recounting some aspect of his workday and I replied in a less than understanding manner. Instead of listening and validating his feelings, I projected my own feelings on the situation. We ended our call tersely and I continued my drive toward home.
As I made my way through traffic, I thought about our conversation and realized how much Husband supports me. He is my biggest fan, my most handsome cheerleader and my champion. I am the dreamer and he keeps my feet hovering close to the ground so that I don't drift away in a whirlwind of ideas. He is my best.
I turned into our neighborhood and saw people out with shovels and snowblowers, clearing a path for the next snowfall. When I pulled up to our home, I decided that I would surprise Husband by shoveling the walkway. At that moment, it was the most romantic thing I could do for Husband. I looked forward to when he got home after work and instead of heading back out into the cold, he would be able to relax a bit.
Shoveling the snow is boring, but I created a mediation of it, keeping my mission front of mind to support my spouse and to apologize in a most practical way that he would appreciate. A neighbor I've never met yelled from across the street that he was willing to help me, that it would be nothing to bring his snowblower my way. I declined and continued my penance. I finished the giant driveway and stood back to review my work. It was missing something, so I grabbed a brush from the garage and drew a heart in the middle of the cleared snow.
When Husband walked through the door, he yelled up the stairs to where I was working in the office. "Who has the best wife ever?" he asked, delighted and surprised at my handiwork. "Probably you," I replied, uncertain because of my bad attitude, yet certain as they day I married my beloved, who is always mine.
When you are planning your wedding, people will tell you that marriage is hard work. I don’t know about hard work; choosing the right partner makes for light work and more fun. But marriage is work of the best kind. It takes practice and patience, whether you are 3 months or 3 years into it as Husband and I are.
When it comes to marriage, be willing to pick up a shovel and get out of your comfort zone. There is always work to be done. Be willing to clear a path to walk together.