Things didn't actually change for our marriage one dark and stormy night. It was a subtle shift in my attitude that took place during hot, sunny days, snowy winters, rainy nights and warm, muddy springs. Over time I gradually started comparing Mike to other men and he just didn't match up.
I guess I took the gift Jesus had given me and said, "Hmmm. You could've done better, you know." All the reasons I fell in love with Mike, all of his strengths, over time became his weaknesses. I would look at his stability and think, "What's the matter with you? You are so wishy-washy." Most of the time I could/can do no wrong in his eyes, and that annoyed me. I wanted some hills and valleys in our relationship. Some explosions. A good yelling match would've been fun, and they say making up from one of those is ....well, I won't go there. Anyway, our relationship was just plain old steady. His unconditional love even irritated me. He is always willing to give up his time to help me with a project or rearrange the furniture or run to town for something we need. He very rarely takes a day just for "Mike". To me, at that time, I stupidly looked at Mike and thought, "Are you a wimp? You let me walk all over you. You always let me have my way." I didn't see his love for what it was and deep inside I didn't feel safe with the safety of Mike.
I guess I just didn't understand him. He'd always been my best friend but the longer we were married the more he confused me. I wanted someone who would take charge. Be aggressive. I wanted him to set goals-be a mover and a shaker. I didn't appreciate who I'd married and I started treating him with less and less respect.
Eventually my attitude started to leak out into conversations I had with my friends. I'd whine and complain about Mike, or cut him down. Most of them just looked at me, mute. But I did have one friend who was willing to step in and help. She knew Mike and was even married to a man similar in nature. One afternoon as we were visiting together she mentioned an article she'd just run across in a magazine. She told me it was an incredible article that had really helped her understand and appreciate the man she'd married and she just knew it would help me. Sure it will. Right....
Pardon me? What did you say? This post is getting too long and you have to clean your toilet? Oh. OK. I'll finish this some other time.