Monday, March 2, 2009

Ironing lesson, 23 years in the making

Even before we married, I had many strong opinion's about what a wife should do and be, and especially NOT do. Thus, well before we were married, I told Jeff, "I will not iron your clothes." It didn't seem like a deal breaker, so he married me anyway.
I have ironed clothes since then, but sad to say that not many of them were men shirts. Many times we would just throw clothes into the dryer. It was close enough.
Well, as time will fly, 23 years easily did! I didn't think much of that initial declaration, for much of that time, because Jeff is not a complainer.
I love Dr. Laura and agree with much of what she says and would listen to her frequently. She has strong opinion's of how a wife should treat her husband. So I listened some more. I was touched by how she made things like ironing sound so simply an act of love given freely. I also have a darling neighbor that is so cute and sweet. She talked about how excited she was when they got married. She would make multiple course meals for her brand new husband and had the cutest attitude about it. There were other sweet examples that I saw, that made me stop and think.
So, I had recently and frequently been thinking about my non-cute attitude about ironing. I don't understand fully why I felt so strongly about things like this. I did feel: I didn't want to be subservient to anyone. Jeff has never been bossy. I have done many things around the house for the family. I gave up sleep to work as a nurse for many years, so I could be with the kids during the day. I knew about sacrifice and love. Why did it take 23 years! I'm not sure. Jeff never complained and only asked me a couple times to iron a shirt. Now I see so clearly, how doing anything for Jeff is a gift of love and that I can give freely! I really had a change of heart, I even feel different! So, I started ironing his shirts. I bought some spray starch. I started ironing all his shirts in the closet. I thought of him as I ironed, for days and days. I thought how he should have wrinkle free shirts to go to work in and how he should not worry about what he was going to wear for the day. I had so many good thoughts about Jeff. I was happy as I ironed all those shirts. I even started ironing his pants! I bought cans and cans of spray starch!
He has told me that I don't need to iron his clothes. It makes me happy to iron his clothes! We just had our 23rd year anniversary in January! So, I have a lot of catching up to do!
I quickly told my daughter, who is getting married soon, "Please, don't wait 23 years to iron shirts for your husband! It's about love, a gift freely given!"
"I know Mom", she quickly replied. She is so smart!

No comments: