Every day, I find myself frustrated. Frustrated from picking up yet another piece of clothing that “almost” made it into the clothes hamper. Frustrated from wet towels thrown around the bathroom, puddles not wiped up, and shaving cream and a razor left out on the bathroom counter. Frustrated from crumbs on the freshly wiped counter and dishes that somehow didn’t make it to the sink. Frustrated after constantly tripping over shoes. Frustrated after the 100th load of laundry of the day (exaggeration, but seriously the laundry never ends).
All of these things lead to one very frustrated wife.
I love my husband dearly, but I often feel like I have a fifth child. These little tasks don’t take that much time or effort, how hard can it really be? He’s not wired to worry about the mess like I am, but a woman can hope, right?
But at the end of the day, if you ask any wife of a first responder what we are thankful for, hands down the majority of answers will be, “He came home.”
Suddenly those little annoyances become huge reminders of his presence.
The clothes that didn’t make it to the basket are not signs of laziness, but the result of a long, restless day. Wet towels and messy counters turn into a rushed morning before another shift. The crumbs on the counter stem from a quickly made lunch he may or may not eat. The shoes and laundry serve as a reminder of him changing from his house clothes to a freshly, carefully ironed uniform.
These little annoyances become a breath of fresh air. Every day, I face these frustrations. They’re always there. But I’m learning. I’m learning to not sweat the small things. Those small things remind me of another day he came home. The day I stop having messes to clean up is the day he doesn’t come home.
I don’t want to be the nagging wife. If one day he doesn’t return, I want his last memory of me to be reflected in love, not frustration.
So tomorrow, I will wake up and happily pick up the towels, socks, and washcloths. I will wipe the counter, again, back to its shiny state. I will throw in another load of laundry. I will return his shoes to the shoe rack. I will open my curtains and momentarily stare at his empty space on the driveway. Say a little prayer that his truck will be parked there after his shift ends and go about my day.
I will make the decision that every day I will be a grateful wife. I will be grateful for every mess, inconvenience, or annoyance. Some days, I will become frustrated—I’m only human. But I can try, every day.
Don’t sweat the small things. Instead, be grateful for every reminder of his presence.