Forty Before 40: Mama got a Porch Swing
Let me give you a nickles worth of free marital advice.
Ladies, if you want something, please just tell your husband. Yes, I know, after five or ten or fifteen or twenty years he should know what you want or what you’d like without you having to say a whole lot, but to set our partners up to be successful sometimes we just have to tell them what we want or need.
Listen, I’m a girl who likes a good surprise and whose love language is gifts. I married an acts of service guy. It means, that’s he’s easy to please on the cheap and I’m not. For a long time, I’d be really passive aggressive with Big Daddy when he didn’t come through with an awesome present for a gift giving event. Then, I spent some time in therapy and realized I was making both of us miserable. I felt unloved and uncared for when Big Daddy would slap together something decidedly un-special at the last minute and Big Daddy felt stressed and incapable when he knew I wasn’t happy with what he’d
thrown put together.
So, I quit that crap.
When we were house shopping in 2010, I knew I wanted three things; more space, a big kitchen and a sweet front porch. I’m pretty easy to please, despite what I told you above and our current house has all of those things. (My next house will have four dedicated bedrooms, a master bathroom that makes sense and preferabley not have been own by people who thought they could DIY when they DICouldn’t). The front porch is one of my favorite places. Last summer, we hosted a wedding reception for my cousin and her husband and even though it rained, all of her friends camped out on the porch and played music and it was perfect, if I may say so myself (and damp and humid, but you get the idea).
Big Daddy and I built these awesome Adirondack chairs last summer…
…and our porch is a place we really use.
For me, it goes without saying that if you have an awesome porch, you really need to have a porch swing. And, to tie this whole thing together, this year I sat Big Daddy down and said “you’re buying me a porch swing for Mother’s Day”.
And so he did.
In a few weeks the fireflies will be out and I wish I could capture a picture of that for you because it’s nothing I’ve ever seen until we moved here. They go off in the trees like a million, teeny paparazzi. It’s stunning to watch. But, until then, we’ve been swinging. In the morning, before the bus and in the evenings before bed and on the weekends when we don’t have anything better to do.
I’m sure there will be people who say that telling Big Daddy what I want, and then getting it, isn’t as fun or spontaneous or romantic as him guessing. Maybe, but there is also something deeply satisfying in being heard and something very peaceful in helping your spouse succeed in making your happy.
I know that time on the swing will be a big priority this summer and throughout the years to come.