Monday, May 05, 2014

The Need to Provide

I've been sharing a bit on a marriage study that I'm doing at church.  You can see part 1 on Respect and part 2 on Insecurity.  Thank you to those that have let me know about how this has impacted you, I very much appreciate it.  This blog started as a way to document my kids childhood for them and has turned into a way to connect with other people as well.  Win win.

My husband Gary.  The Main Provider.
{Photo courtesy of Andrew Willms}

This week in our marriage study (`For Women Only' by Shaunti Feldhahn), we learned about the constant desire of a man to provide for his family.   I don't feel like this one really hit home for us as something that made me go `Oh yes! So true!' but there were a few good tidbits in there.

First of all, they did a study and asked how often the man thinks about their responsibility to provide for their family and 71% said that it was always or often on their mind.  Gary does not fit into the majority here as he doesn't think or worry about it (he really doesn't worry about anything though, I asked him.).

The few things that I have learned over the years, and were solidified this week were:

1.  Gary does not dread going to work. Ever.  Every year I ask him if he's good to go for another year of teaching and he always says `yes'.  He loves/likes it.  I, on the other hand, got burnt out from teaching full time and don't see myself every doing that again (part time, yes, maybe).  

2.  Gary likes spending time at work and doing the best he can.  For the most part, he loves hanging out with students, teaching them, and coaching them.  I used to get upset at times that he seemed to love going on hiking trips with his classes more than go camping with us.  Or that he liked spending so much time coaching and missing so many dinners and/or bedtimes.  I've realized he wants to do his job well and it gives him great satisfaction, and by doing that, he will have to sacrifice some family time for that.  If he's been working more, `The appropriate response is sympathy, not criticism.' (although balance is needed).

{This picture was from my first classroom back in 2002 I think.  We both started teaching Science 9 at the same school in 2001.}

3. Appreciate the work he does.  Ask about his day.  Say thank you for working so hard.  It doesn't have to be a productivity contest of `Well, I did the laundry, edited a session, vacuumed, made meals, dusted...'.  Ahem, not that I do that.

4. Talk about the lifestyle you both want. Gary and I talk about this a lot. I am very money conscious and take care of most of the finances in our home.  We talk often (at least once a month) about how much we want in savings, what we will use it for, how we can save money, what big purchases will be coming up this year etc. 

There was one VERY surprising thing that came up this week when I talked about this with him.  He thought that if he could make our current household income by himself, that I would still want to work.  NOPE. It's very true that I like to be productive, but I could be busy with waaaaay more fun things than work.  Sports, reading, volunteering, RELAXING.  Louise of 3 years ago would probably want to work and bring money in, but this Louise?  She wants to savour time and energy with her family and find some more time to herself.  I have worked since I was 11 years old (started with babysitting then on to Purdy's Chocolates) and all through university (residence advisor, cafeteria, landscaper), straight to teaching, and then photography and subbing.  Time for a break!!  That being said, Gary doesn't have the option to work more to make more (he already shoots weddings with me as a second job) and I don't want him gone more, so I am so thankful for the work that I do have; babysitting, subbing and photography. Very thankful.

Gary, thank you so much for working all the time to bring home the bacon.   I love bacon!

I hope you had a wonderful weekend.  

1 comment:

  1. Another great post, Louise. The students that Gary teaches and coaches are very lucky!