Last week as you finished caulking the gaps of the new pantry shelves you installed for me, I realized how little credit I’ve given you over the years.
I know this is a new skill you learned just to make me happy. Is it really just now that I’m seeing all the little things you’ve done—just for me?
I think of the times we wanted to watch a movie and you let me choose.
And remember the time I wanted to teach English in South Korea and you quit your job to come with me? What an adventure! You supported that idea.
The decor in the house that I chose? You didn’t complain.
All those times I switched majors or jobs . . . you didn’t belittle my choices.
That time I wanted to get a bunch of credit cards so we could earn some points for travel? You opened some, too.
When my mother needed help building her shed? You volunteered.
When the groceries need to be hauled in, you’re right there.
Honey, in all the things we’ve done together in life, you’re incredibly capable and supportive.
You deserve more credit than I’ve given you.
I’m sorry I haven’t seen it.
You are deserving of praise, love, and admiration.
The problem has never been you.
It’s been me. I focus on all the things you don’t do well. Cleaning, budgeting, weeding, child-rearing, home improvement, and paying attention to details have been sore points between us. I often see what you are not rather than appreciate all the things you do.
But, as we’ve grown, I see my own shortcomings glaring me in the face. You are the giving one.
If we’ve had a disagreement, who’s the first to humble themselves? You.
If there’s one piece of cake left, who offers to give it up? You.
If there’s a spider that needs to be killed or a toilet that needs to be plunged, who does it? You.
When the car needs a fix, who watches YouTube and figures it out? You.
When I lose my patience with the kids, who’s there to back me up? You.
When I need a break, who pushes me out the door? You.
When I look at all the things you’ve done for me over the years, I feel so grateful. You are so incredibly capable, smart, and giving. And I can’t believe I’ve missed it.
I can’t believe how much time I’ve spent frustrated with you. I can’t believe how much I didn’t see. I can’t believe I didn’t express my gratitude more.
I knew when I married you how great you were, but I seem to have forgotten it along the way.
You are my dream guy.
You’ve been a loyal, hardworking companion, and you deserve all the praise in the world.
Thank you, forever.