Do you ever feel that you take one step forward and two steps back in your marriage or even in parenting? I do. Actually most of my 20+ year marriage it has been like that. I’m imagining that it’s like that for most people, or at least I’d like to think that. It makes me feel a little better!
We work so hard to get that one step forward. We are excited. We’re making progress. Then. Bam! Two steps back. And it sure happens fast. I mean, it took months to move forward, how can slipping backwards treat you like a failure? Make you feel that this whole marriage thing is just too hard and is it worth all that hard work?
My answer to that is YES. It is worth it. But boy is it difficult sometimes.
In fact, just the other night, I was feeling this failure. But the benefit of doing this for many years is that I can now recognize when that backward spiral is coming. We didn’t even get in an argument, out loud. Actually he was sleeping! So… it was an argument in my head. Can you relate. Again, maybe this is just a me thing. The argument went something like, how could he be do that, treat me that way, I do so much. I work so hard to make things right, and so on. So, maybe I was actually having a little pity-party for myself. I don’t even know why. Again, he was sleeping during this whole conversation. He had no idea what was even going on, or that anything he did anything.
It came down to me not respecting him and complaining about what I didn’t get, in my head! I decided to lay my head down on my pillow, close my eyes and stew. Running even a bigger argument in my head. I would show him! I would win this one.
Then I thought, how ridiculous am I being! All he did was ask me to turn off the light, he had to be up early for work. But I was reading! I was busy working. I was treating myself to some quiet time. Arghhh.
After stewing for a few minutes, I stopped and thought, wow my pillow actually feels good. Maybe I should’ve turned the light off sooner. I am kinda tired. Maybe he was right. Maybe he knows me a little too well. Arghh, he’s winning this argument even while he sleeps.
I decided this argument, in my head, was not going to cause me to go to sleep angry. I was not going to be mad at him the next day, unknowingly to him. I was going to pull up my big-girl-panties and get over myself! Gulp.
I thought about all the wonderful things he does for me everyday in addition to running off to a stressful job everyday that provides for our family. I thought how much he tries to please me, all the time. I thought how selfish I am being. God please forgive me.
I’m not letting this send me two steps back! I refuse to let that happen.
So why does this happen? Whether you believe it or not, there is an enemy that wants nothing more than to steal, kill and destroy what you have worked so hard to make good and right. He is after your marriage, kids and family. Don’t give into the temptation of being angry, especially before bed. Don’t let that enemy get a foothold on you.
When you get in that mood, try to step back and look at the whole picture. Ask yourself if this is about you and you’re just having one of my famous pity-parties or is this a real concern. If it’s just you, get over it. Pray about it and count your blessings. If it’s a real concern. Pray about. Don’t stew on it. Talk about it right away with your husband, explain exactly how your feeling. He needs to understand where you are coming from. They can’t hear those arguments in our heads or guess what we’re thinking or feeling. Talk!
Keeping moving forward one step at a time, you will see little successes all the time, remember them or write them down. Count your blessings in your marriage and in your children. There are many!
Photo Credit: (c) Can Stock Photo
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