“A good book is all anyone really needs.” ~M
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Thoughts and Perspectives From the Mind of a Common Girl
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It’s been awhile since I wrote a Him vs. Her, and there’s been a few things that I’ve wanted to share, so here goes…
As I’ve spoken of in recent days, hubby and I have been having quite a bit of trouble getting through these past two years. We’re coming up on 23 years of marriage in February and although things haven’t been the best, I see a ton of progress being made in our relationship.
One thing that has recently changed, is the fact that hubby began to ask himself why we weren’t connecting the way we ought to be. He started praying about a lot of things that he had been struggling with, and asking God to show him where he was going wrong.
One morning he suddenly woke up, and announced to me that he was no longer going to be the man that just let life pass him by. He vowed to encourage me in my own faith, to stop withholding his love from me, and promised to become the man that I deserve.
I was quite taken back from his sudden change of heart. I truly wondered if he was serious. After so many years of me feeling rejected and unloved by him, I wondered why he wanted to change now. I was actually a bit angry at first, and wondered why he waited almost 23 years to change his tune and be the man that I had always hoped he would be.
It’s been about a month now, and my head is still spinning from the changes that I see in him. I still have my doubts that things will stay this way and I am unsure of how to act sometimes, because I had gotten so used to feeling as if I didn’t matter to him. I felt ignored, unimportant, and very unhappy most of the time.
So now confusion is setting in. I keep asking myself… Is this real? Will this last? And do I really want to give him a chance to fix what’s been broken for so long? My stubborn side tells me not to give in; warns me that he had his chance, and reminds me that my heart has since moved on. And yet the part of me that has never stopped loving him, tells me to forgive and forget; to let go of the past and move forward, because obviously God has taken his heart and changed it for the good.
I feel vulnerable in accepting the possibility that he really has changed. I feel like I could wake up tomorrow and be taken for granted once again. I don’t think I can handle another 23 years of feeling that way and I’m almost fearful of being blindsided and letting that happen again.
I have become stronger in these last two years. Learning to be more independent of him because he wasn’t always there, and quite honestly, I grew to love the freedom of being alone, because it meant that I didn’t have to continue feeling rejected by him. I used writing as my escape and felt like I didn’t need him anymore.
So now, I have a choice to make. I am struggling every day to either accept this unexpected gift that apparently God has given me, or throw it all away because I’m stubborn and tired of trying. It sounds like an easy choice, and yet I’m fighting against my own will to keep myself from getting hurt. My heart just won’t let me forget all the suffering and the pain, which plagued me for so long. And yet I know what I must do.
In recent days, I have been blessed with loving words of affirmation, by my husband who is trying so very hard to make things right. Tonight I spent some time going through all the notes that he’s been leaving for me over the past month, and I affixed them to the tree that I painted on my office wall. I decided that I needed these loving reminders, to help me move forward. I need to forget the years of bad memories and replace them with the good ones that we are finally making together. I think I may eventually win this battle after all.
It’s finally here, my favorite day of the year, the 4th of July! I’m not sure about you, but the 4th has always been a big day for me. Here are some of the memories I have of this special day; cookouts, visiting the old Stow house, eating homemade ice cream, going on rides, (pony, hay, train, boat, & Model-T) taking long walks on the beach, drawing messages in the dark with sparklers, watching fireworks, reminiscing about the good old days, and most importantly, sharing the entire wonderful day with family and friends.
Every year is different, but every year is amazing in its own way; and this year is no exception! From the moment I got up this morning, I have been anxious and eager. Celebrating our freedom, in one of the most beautiful cities in the world, is such a thrill to me! Brian and I decided to grab breakfast at Einstein Bagels, which is located at our resort. I am so glad that we decided to eat here. The food is really good, inexpensive, and the staff have been very friendly. With our stomachs full and a helpful tip from one of the staff members, we decide to head to the LINQ to park for the day. The LINQ, is a gigantic high roller observation wheel that offers panoramic views of Las Vegas. Unfortunately it’s $30 a ticket to take a ride, so we decide to pass and instead visit a few casinos.
There is so much to see and do here, and the streets and casinos are so crowded today. It’s hard to get around and the heat is unbearable. I am determined to buy souvenirs today, but it seems like every shop has basically the exact same thing. The only thing that ever changes is the prices. So I am spending most of my time just looking at the costs and trying to find good deals. In a city like this though, good deals are hard to find, and Brian and I don’t have much luck finding anything worth buying.
Back out on the streets, which are getting more crowded by the hour, we pass by a woman who is very intoxicated and not wearing anything but a string to cover up her lady parts. With the image now burned into my mind, I try to erase my last few minutes of memory, but unfortunately the delete button isn’t working. I finally just realized, that we aren’t in Kansas anymore! Oh wait… we never were! Oh well… back to what I was saying… out on the streets there are lots of interesting people today. Most are trying to make a few bucks selling their homemade cd’s, and some are even selling sculptures that they have cleverly designed. I feel bad that I can’t buy everything.
We finally pass a couple that isn’t trying to sell anything, all they are asking for is food. The sign reads “No money, food only please.” So I decide to stop and offer them a package of apple raisin crisps and some water that I have stashed away in my backpack. The couple is very appreciative and eats the crackers right away. Janet and Steve are their names and they return the favor by offering us handmade roses for our daughters. I feel blessed by their generosity and Steve won’t let us leave until he has finished making all four roses. While Steve is making the beautiful roses out of palm fronds, Janet shares their story with us, about how they ended up here and how they still feel blessed despite their situation of being homeless. Janet’s mother is very sick and she doesn’t want to tell her mother that she is homeless. She fears that her mother will become more ill by the news. Their story is all too familiar and I feel sad that they have to live this way. After carefully putting the flowers away in my backpack, we head out once more.
Heading down the street further, we spy a Mexican restaurant and take a peek inside, to see if there are any tables available. We are surprised by how vacant the place looks and we are seated right away. After ordering, our food comes fast and everything tastes really good. After eating, we walk around and visit a few more casinos. The day is going by fast, and before we realize it, it is already 9:15 p.m. and the fireworks are scheduled to start in 15 minutes. We hurry outside and notice that the whole strip is covered from one end to the next in a mob of people. We aren’t sure where the best viewing spot is, so we just stay where we’re at and hope for the best.
Soon the fireworks begin and we realize that we have hardly any view at all. Unfortunately with the crowds being as thick as they are, we have to remain where we are, catching glimpses of the fireworks through the buildings that are blocking our view. The fireworks don’t last long and afterward we decide to get frosties at Wendy’s and chicken tenders at Chick Filet for a late night dinner/snack. Once done eating, we decide to walk back to the car. The crowds aren’t quite as bad as they had been, but it still takes us about an hour of walking before we reach our car.
Once back at the resort I flop on the bed in relief that I can finally lay down. I can see the LINQ through the window. It’s all lit up in red, white, and blue. It’s been a good day, but in a way I’m happy it’s over. I have never seen so many people in one place before and it’s good to finally be free from the crowds once again. Goodnight!