Some rare marriage advice (because after nine years I'm still totally winging it).
The moment you walk in that door after a long day at work, after a training session, after whatever kept you busy all day... that very moment needs to be the happiest few minutes you've had since leaving your home in the morning.
If you have to, fake it.
We get it, you're tired. We get it, you're mentally drained, physically exhausted. We really do know and appreciate all these things.
But suck it up, for at least 20 minutes, just suck it up.
Because waiting for you are scenarios you possibly (understandably) haven't considered whilst you were taking over the world.
Waiting for you are children who have a million 'fascinating' stories they're desperate to share with you. Little stories that may seem so trivial, but in their growing minds are the most important things in the world.
Nothing puts your day, your life into perspective like seeing it through the eyes of an innocent child with a fiery imagination. Hug them, pick them up, read them a story.
They've missed you.
Waiting for you is your spouse. If he/she is a stay at home parent they've spent all day thanklessly putting others first, wiping small bums, cooking, organising, drying tears, kissing 'ouchies', knowing when to discipline, playing dress-up, cricket, baker-baker. Engaging on an array of levels specific to each child.
Following the ssaaaaammmeeeee routine of raising a functioning family, dayyyyy in and dayyyyyy out.
Possibly having no adult interaction all day. Mentally under-stimulated so far as brain usage goes but emotionally, more exhausted than words could ever ever ever begin to describe.
So very 'touched-out'.
And completely guilty at entertaining even an ounce of resentment for the person they love and know works hard to provide.
But who they also sometimes shamefully envy for having an identity, goals and a purpose to existence beyond school runs, homework and toy-tidier.
They've missed you.
Be tired, be down if your day was rough. But be those things only after you've arrived happy. Your reaction to seeing your family will set the tone for the evening. Seeing you obviously adore, and quite simply... play with the children who have pushed your spouse to the brink of insanity will fill him/her with enough love and raw affection to welcome tomorrow when it all starts again.
Be overly, obviously excited to see the family who, whilst you contribute to the economy and your career / life goals, are growing into an entity that is silently, tirelessly moulded by that beautiful person in the background who craves your appreciation and gratitude as much as you crave theirs.
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