Isn’t it about time?

by

Last week I was driving home from a long day.  My husband had stayed home with our one-year-old so I could drive 2 hours away to spend the day seeing clients.  All in all, it would be an 11-hour day before I got home.  As I was driving home, I felt tired and was well aware of how long of a day it had been for me.  Then it hit me- it had been just as long of a day for my husband, maybe even longer since he was stuck home, transportation-less, entertaining a baby.  I realized how much he does to support my various endeavors, and I was really grateful.

I wondered how I could thank him.  Then I thought, “I just made XX amount of money; I’ll tell him to go out and buy something for himself (he LOVES books).”  Then the sad reality hit me “OH NO!! I’m his ‘sugar-daddy’!”  I couldn’t believe it; somehow our relationship had become such that he supports me in just about everything I want to do, and I thank him by saying “go and buy yourself something nice.”  This made me think about how ultimately important time together with family is.

In the end, it doesn’t matter if I’m the best therapist, most accomplished academic, or most successful career-woman.  Actually, in the end, it doesn’t matter if I’m even really good at these things.  What matters is my relationship with my husband and child, and that relationship requires time.  Quality time together is vitally important, but equally important is the amount of time we spend together.  It won’t matter if I’m there for graduation, office parties, and vacations if I’m not there for diaper-changing, dinner-time, and coming home.  This became clear when, a few days later, I spent the day with them doing “nothing.”  It was equally if not more fulfilling than all my other activities combined.

Angela B. Bradford, MS, LMFT

Alabama Community Healthy Marriage Initiative

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