After finally closing on our new house, hubby and I are faced with a plethora of redecorating projects; from simple repainting to redoing the kitchen from the walls out. We spent a few hours at Menard's Friday morning getting the kitchen design handled (gotta love computer aided drafting tools!) and getting the cabinets picked out. Since I had to be at work by 1:40, we told the salesperson that hubby would be back after lunch to finish the purchase. At that time he was also going to add the appliances to the bill - new fridge, stove, dishwasher and microwave that will also serve as the hood for the stove. Exciting? Yes! A little time-consuming and slightly overwhelming? Definitely!
I've made it a priority to learn to carefully choose my words when speaking to my husband. Trust me, I do better on some days than others. But the over all goal is to learn to show my husband the respect he needs from me. As if his need wasn't enough motivation, the end of Ephesians 5:33 states "the wife must respect her husband." As easy as it would be to tie some sort of "once he earns it" clause to that statement, the scripture does not say that. I am simply told to respect him.
I find that my "mommy brain" is often the cause of my disrespect. I became a mother more than 20 years ago and have four children, the youngest of whom is fifteen. Much of my time in the last 20 years has been spent using that "mom" tone of voice that is meant to educate, remind, and keep accountable. Unfortunately, I've spent so much time correcting, checking up on, and reprimanding my children that I forget to lose that tone of voice - and that attitude - when speaking to my husband! In other words, I talk to him like a child who needs mom to check up on him. He is a capable, intelligent, funny, clever individual and does not want or need me to act as his mother! I still slip occasionally but I'm (hopefully) getting better at it.
So what does buying kitchen cupboards and appliances have to do with respecting my husband? When it came to the layout of the new cupboards and the appliances, my husband had some definite preferences. Knowing that he is much more capable at dealing with spatial issues, I trusted him to make the best possible use of the space. And I absolutely LOVE the layout! I would never have been able to conceive what he has put together! When it came to the actual type of cupboard to fit in a designated space, he left that to me. Much of the power to decide the color and style of the cupboard doors - within reasonable financial limitations - was also left in my hands. We had looked at a number of possible appliances and I had pointed out my favorites. Again, I was assured that my desire for a specific color would be honored. As I said before I had to get to work and wouldn't be there to actually have a say in the final decision regarding the appliances. Over lunch, we discussed going back later so we could pick them out together but I told him that I trusted him to make the final decision because I knew he would do what was best for our family and our finances. When I saw the receipt later that day, I discovered that I had gotten my first choice with every single appliance!
I know this may seem very superficial to some who read this. It really isn't about the monetary value or the items themselves. I see it this way - I could have nagged my husband, reminding him REPEATEDLY over lunch what I expected and asking him to repeat back to me what I wanted. Wouldn't that have been a great way to let him know that I was sure he would fail without me there?! Instead, I simply told him I trusted him - and I really did - to make the decision that would be best for us and our new home. At the time, I was hoping for at least one of the appliances to be the one I wanted. Instead, I got all four. And his own words to me (and in a later Facebook post!) let me know that he loved doing something that made me happy. Maybe there is something to this actively showing respecting to my husband thing!