My husband is a handsome guy, fun-loving, athletic, and FULL of energy. He used to say he had "all the energy of a 2-year-old" then a year or so ago he decided he had "matured" a bit so now he says he has "all the energy of a 4-year-old."
That actually is a fairly accurate statement!
He enjoys golfing, dancing, swimming, boating, scuba-diving, sky-diving, the list goes on and on...and he is really good at anything he tries.
If you know me, you know I was the kid in school the team captains fought about who had to take me on their team. In recent years, I've had to take steroid medications to help me with breathing -- which has added several pounds to my already chunky frame.
So today, we went out for a boat ride. It was a lovely day, and we swam a bit, played with Scarlett (who LOVES to fetch sticks the size of small trees in the water), and fished a while. At mid-afternoon, we decided to call it a day, and David brought the boat up alongside the dock at Dutchman's Creek, where we'd left the pickup. He hopped out and began tying it up.
Then I tried to get out of the boat. David offered me his hand and I took it. However, I am not very steady on my feet, I feel hugely overweight, and to my horrors, as I stepped out of the boat I tripped. I fell --SPLAT-- on the dock, bruising my knee, my hand, and my pride. David helped me up; I was not really hurt and tried to shake it off.
Satisfied that I was okay, he secured the boat back on the trailer, and we hopped in the pickup and headed back home, mostly in silence. He was listening to NPR...but I was brooding.
Here's a guy full of life and energy; he wants to DO things, he wants to run and jump and play and dive and live the most actively full life in the world. And yet he's saddled with a partner for life like me. I cant even get out of a boat without tripping. I'm klutzy, my walk is more of a lumbering gait...on and on and on I beat myself up mentally for my physical/athletic shortcomings. I thought about all the things he could do, WITH someone, if that "someone" was another person who was "slim, trim, and athletic." Oh the self-talk I was mentally giving myself was pretty darn cruel. And as we got closer to home, I felt worse. And worse. And worse.
About two miles from our house, David broke the silence by praying aloud: "THANK YOU GOD for this gorgeous day, for the fun we've had, for the sunshine, the boat, and for my lovely wife!"
He had no idea what his prayer to God had spoken to my own heart. I hadnt given him the first clue about the things I'd been thinking about myself. The mean self-talk evaporated with the realization that he didnt really care that I'm not "slim, trim, and athletic." He loves me just the way I am, clumsiness and all.
I thought of times he's swept me into his arms and danced with me in the kitchen. I'm not a good dancer at all -- but he ignores when I step on his toes, or go right instead of left. He's just happy to be holding me, happy to be dancing with ME. It makes me feel like the most special girl in the world.
In our lives today, we're bombarded with how we "should" look. I'm far from the ideal and tend to put myself down about it a lot (like today). I have a difficult time loving myself. But God has given me a husband who thinks I am absolutely "the bomb" (his words). I wonder why it is so hard for me to see myself as he does...
And that made me wonder why it is so hard for me to see myself as God does. I dredge up all the shortcomings, all the "bad stuff." But God sees me as HIS CHILD, his daughter -- a PRINCESS. One who is worthy of being loved by others -- including herself!
Learning to love myself is a challenge: I have to keep on beating back the negative self-talk that I've played in my head for so long. I'd like to eject that tape and throw it into the river.
So for now...I'm thanking God for who I am, how I am, what I am. And for a husband who thinks I am a rare and precious jewel. :)