It was fourteen, yes, fourteen years ago today, that Mr. Man looked at me and pronounced before God, family, and friends that he wanted to spend forever with me. On several occasions I have looked at photos or videos of that 'girl' he married and said, "What on earth did you see in me?" I shudder watching myself on my wedding video, because Ugh.. I was so young and talked like a valley girl. And wow, I was so giggly. However, I am grateful he saw the potential in me.
Fast forward... several years, two dogs, two kids, home with a white picket fence... it's all good. We laughed, we loved, we lived. Things have not been perfect, nor have they been devastating. *knock on wood* There is no great story to tell, or is there? There is something about milestones that makes me reflect over the passing years. Last year, things were very different than they are now. I feel like I was in Coma last year at this time. Going through the motions, but not really living. Definitely not enjoying or embracing the life I wanted to live. I felt like I had way too much on my plate. When in reality, I was trying to control and plan everything more than neccessary, thinking that would make it easier, if I could just manage it all. Last year at this point, I was seriously contemplating some drastic options, wondering what would make me happier. I felt like I had been sinking in quicksand for a long time, and it was about to cover my head. I was suffocating. In the end, I got to the point where I was so tired. So tired of trying to control everything. Keeping everything neatly organized and tidy in my head. Tired of being "in charge". I decided to relinquish my deeply rooted control issues, and let go.No really.. I let it go. I took a very zen-like approach to everything. I stopped fretting over details, image, perceptions, and how things should be. It is.... what it is. Accept, embrace, move on. It's been a conscience effort. I have to take a deep breath and think for a second how to react to a situation. I stopped saying "No" right off the bat when the kids asked for something. I was saying No all the time for silly reasons to the kids. I was so desperate to feel in control, meanwhile I was making everyone feel stifled.Magical things started happening in my life. My kids were happier, there were less tantrums, less fighting... we did more fun things. I was "present" not fretting about how things should be done or the mess that was being made... just living in the moment. I started to act silly, and made my children laugh often. No more to do list a mile long. The weird thing is, things still got done. There just wasn't the same pressure to get it done NOW, and so much of my to do list was pointless. It was about trying to upkeep an image more than anything. It didn't have to be done. Random people noticed changes, I got comments "You are so much more.. playful." "I had no idea you were funny." "You are much mellower than I rememberl" I learned that people had been referring to me as "Wenchy" instead of Wendy behind my back. OUCH. Mr. Man, who I had pushed away so much over the last year while I slipped into my, "I'm trying to control it all, but failing" coma, started to notice the change. He had been on edge for so long, not sure what would stress me out more. We started to laugh more together. Instead of fretting, I flirted. Instead of critique, I complimented. If he took the kids out to the zoo, and they came home muddy, I high fived them all while giving them shampoo mohawks. At the end of the day, I laid down on the couch next to him and watched a movie with him. We started talking more, fighting less. I listened more than I talked for the first time in my life. And we fell in love all over again. Over the last year, I have laughed more than I have in the last few years combined. I'm doing a lot less, overall. I am shocked, completely and utterly shocked, at how much the little details don't matter. No ONE cares about the details of my life, and whether the dishes are done right after the meal or at the end of the day or even the next day. Emails can be answered later on, they don't have to be addressed the minute they arrive. Saturdays are a day we love to hang out as a family, they aren't a day that I try to cram accomplish a million tasks because Mr. Man is home and can watch the kids.
It's good... it's REALLY good. Doing less, living more. And on the occasion of this anniversary, I can say I am truly happy. And I'm grateful for a man who has stuck with me through thick and thin. Who also had the courage to say, "I love you, and I'm not sure how to help." I'm grateful for the friends who had the courage to say, "I'm concerned." even though they knew I might push them away, because I didn't want anyone to see or know that I didn't have everything under control. I'm grateful that I opened up and showed the world I'm vulnerable. It's scary posting this, but I'm not perfect, so my blog shouldn't be an image of perfection. I want my children to know, that life is fabulous, but it's not perfect. No need to pretend that it is.
Happy Anniversary Mr. Man. This year.. instead of a gift... I shed all the baggage, stepped out my tidy little compartmentalized box, and underneath it all found that fun girl that had a zest for life, she's a bit giggly, kind of like the girl in that wedding video.