Wednesday, February 27, 2013

This guy

I have a pile of work waiting for me, but I keep thinking about this guy. Unless you're family, you probably don't know him very well. A self-proclaimed introvert, he'd rather spend time at home hanging with Olivia and me (or reading a book or taking a nap) and I love him for that.

Something else I love him for? His respect for me. It is deep and runs at the core of everything that goes on in our house. He respects that I needed extra sleep instead of getting up early to wash the dishes that I was too lazy to clean up the night before. He respects that I have limits when it comes to being a mom. He respects that I need personal time. And, most of all, he respects my dreams.

A few nights ago I was up in our bedroom by myself folding laundry and thinking about everything that's gone into getting my book accepted for publication. There were a lot of little things that "just happened" to work out exactly right and at exactly the right time. I put so much work into my book proposal. My publisher has already been so flexible and helpful. I have a mom and several friends who have been doing some preliminary editing for me, a brother and a sister-in-law who just happen to be pros at writing resumes who offered their expert advice. There are so many tiny little things that have brought me to this point and given me the opportunity to write this book.

But as I was standing there, folding laundry, I looked up at the wall and saw a sweet little note that Bryan wrote for me a few days before when I was feeling overwhelmed and inadequate. He told me how much he loves me, how much he believes in me, and assured me that it would all work out. And in that moment I came to understand that none of this would be happening without him. I've been blessed with talents and supportive friends and family and perfect timing and unexpected networking connections, but none of this would have happened without Bryan.

He goes to school everyday and takes really challenging classes. He's studying to become an optometrist, which, to me, is impressive. I wouldn't stand a chance in any kind of med school and here he is doing awesome at it. And yet, at the end of the day, he still comes home and asks me how my day was. He still sympathizes with me over the troubles of raising a child. He comes down to my little sewing lair and lets me show off all of my projects. Time and time again he's agreed to invest money and time into the things that are important to me.

In short, he treats my hobbies with as much respect as he does his own career. He takes me seriously when I say I need to spend time photographing something I made out of cereal boxes. He goes with me (sometimes) to the fabric store. He hangs with Olivia while I work on my stuff.

I think it would be all too easy for him to say, "Why are you spending money on fabric when you could just buy that for cheaper?" or "You can sew anytime. I've been at school all day and I need a break," or, "It's just a hobby."

When we first got married, sewing and crafting and being creative really was just a hobby for me. But over the years as I've learned more and expanded my skills (and supply closet--heh heh), Bryan has always been behind me every step of the way. He gets excited for me when my tutorials get featured somewhere. He encourages me to keep going when all I want to do is give up. He's even tested a few projects for me, sweet guy.

Right now he's off teaching the 8-11 year old girls at our church the basics of drawing. I'm sure he could show up and teach them a few random things and they'd love it, but he spent the last couple of months thinking about it and preparing for it. It's a little thing, but I think it perfectly illustrates the way Bryan feels about creativity and the importance of supporting others in their own creative endeavors.

Some of you may not know this, but Bryan and I met our freshman year at college. We dated all that year and then he left for two years to serve a church mission. During that time we were only allowed to write letters or emails and it was hard. Probably the hardest thing I've ever done. Being his wife and spending every single day of my life with him now is a dream come true in so many ways.

This guy. I love him so much.


alison said...

I love this :)

Kathy Haynie said...

Mark thinks he's shutting his eye in the photo so he won't have to look at the "Undies pattern" ad just off to the right. :) Bryan is awesome. Please give him a hug for me!

Emily said...

I love this too! You two are seriously the awesomest. Uh...if that is a word. SO excited to see you soon!

Delia said...

You are so amazing and have awesome husband. Loved reading this!