On being a wife. First.


I’ve written this post a million times in my head and rewritten drafts of it on the computer and yet, its still quite hard to hit that pesky ‘publish’ button.

I am a wife. I’ve been a wife for almost 13 years now.  But in those 13 years, I’ve also taken on other roles- student, career professional, mother, stay-at-home-goddess, volunteer, and well…the list goes on and changes.

When my husband and I got married, we were the best of friends. In the early years of our marriage, we had a strong marriage. We made dates a priority. If we couldn’t go out, we’d stay in, having late candlelit dinners after the kids were in bed.

Perhaps its because we had our first child early in the marriage. Or perhaps it was because the 2nd and 3rd babies came so quickly (and stressfully) after the first. Or perhaps not. But somewhere along the way, we lost sight of each other.

We make a great parenting team. I make an excellent household CEO and he does well bringing home the bacon. But our marriage? It quietly and slowly began to take a backseat.

I’ll be honest. In the early years of parenting 3 young babies, it was hard. I had PPD. My daughter was so colicy. The last thing I wanted to do was give any more energy to anyone else at the end of the day. Later on, it became the schedules. The insane busy-ness that is now our lives.  The constant go-go-go that is 3 kids in activities.  All along, we’ve always made it a priority to take vacations alone. Sometimes quick weekend trips, sometimes 5-7 day trips. But a marriage cannot be sustained on 3-7 days/year.

It came to a point where I realized that frankly, I was sucking as a wife. I was making time for my children, my friends, my family, but not my husband. I took no interest in his daily life anymore. I was actually resenting him for things. And I certainly wasn’t being very nice to him.

So the question became this: can I change my behavior (and he his, as well) and make us ‘US’ again? Do I have the energy for it? Or can we put this off a few more years until the kids are older, and perhaps, we’re less busy?

The answer was simple. Or rather, hard, but simple.

Marriage is hard work. Like, damn- its hard work. But I wasn’t going to let it take a backseat anymore. Life’s too short for regrets. And my biggest fear was that these years would pass by us and we’d find ourselves with our children heading to college and we’d no longer be friends. We’d no longer have anything in common. We’d no longer be in love. And neither of us wanted that.  It was time to put the marriage first.  Our marriage needed to be just as high of a priority as our jobs/children/friends.

So here we are — in marriage counseling (which feels like admitting a dirty little secret). Learning things about each other. Helping to be that strong, awesome couple again. That couple who loved being with each other, doing things together, having conversations, and genuinely looking forward to seeing each other at the end of the day.

And its a good thing.

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  • Alyson @Vintage Sunshine

    You’re so right. Marriage is damn hard. Good for you & Chris, for recognizing the path that you were headed down and wanting it to change. Also, if you ever need an ear, you know where to find me. xo
    Alyson @Vintage Sunshine recently posted..how’s it going?My Profile

  • Neil

    So very proud of you! This will be great for you.

  • karrie harbin

    Very proud of you. It takes a lot of guts to admit there is a problem, and even more to go after finding the solution. The week after we got home from out honeymoon we started this class called Marriage Dynamics (offered through our church) and it did wonders for us. Helps to figure out what each other needs, and that does change as your marriage ages. We read the “His Needs, Her Needs” books in this class and did a workbook that went with the book. It was quite informative….I highly recommend it! Really helped us to have the tools to have a good marriage, considering both of our first ones failed. You do the work, you get the results. Will be praying for you guys. 🙂

  • Kim

    This is so great. We have been to marriage counseling when things were hard (like, now in the midst of newborn transition) and when things were going great. I think it’s so healthy to sit and have a mediator asking hard questions. Thankful for people like you who will write these posts and allow your readers to evaluate if they’re making their marriage as much of a priority as it should be.

  • heather

    First of all, I think this is a crazy brave post by a super brave gal! That’s big stuff to out out there and I am so thankful you guys are working together to strengthen your marriage. It is so important and so smart to work on it before it’s past the point of repair. You can’t lose your best friend in the chaos of life!

    But also, thanks for writing this. I think it is so important to put a dialogue out there on the big issues in life…the tough stuff. I first noticed the lack of information when I was dealing (badly) with our miscarriage. I couldn’t understand why there was nothing written about other people’s struggles…was I alone? We put such a stigma on the tough stuff that you not only have to go through it, but you feel like you might be the only one dealing/struggling. Sharing our stories helps everyone…ourselves, our friends, our world. Thanks for putting yourself out there…
    heather recently posted..Summer HousekeepingMy Profile

  • Kari

    It is SO hard.
    And I so appreciate your honesty.
    I think a lot of us have been there so we understand what you are going through.
    It is those who have courage that stick it out to see if it can become beautiful again.
    Here is to finding your best friend again.
    Big hugs.

  • Shanna @ Queen of the Castles

    Marriage is amazing when you’re both in it – I’m so excited to see where your journey leads and the strength that you’re showing – wow! Good for you guys, Karri! Proud of you 🙂
    Shanna @ Queen of the Castles recently posted..Supertracker – ever heard of it?My Profile

  • Julie

    Good for you for being so honest and for knowing when to ask for help. Marriage is not for wimps! Keep up the fight- you’ll be better for getting through the downs and even more appreciative of the ups!
    Julie recently posted..Bringing Sexy BackMy Profile

  • april kennedy

    Hi! Getting caught up on your blog and posts and this is my favorite. been there and done that and so so important and worth while. this makes me smile so big and is also a reminder that I need to not suck at being a wife. dave takes a back seat often and that is not fair to him. today i resolve to be better again. thank you for the reminder! xoxo

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