It’s Wednesday morning, and I’m surrounded by the fresh leather smell of Frye boots still in the box. They’re a gift from my husband — just because I’m pregnant. He’s so good at loving me, and I just want to pull a Saint Paul and “out do each other in showing affection.” 

So I made a list of everyday ways to love him. Do I do all these things? Heck no. But I know they are good. And the Fryes remind me that I should. 

1. Allow him to workout.

It’s not legal in VA, but somehow I’m married to two people: Stan when he exercises and Stan when he doesn’t. He is so much happier when he’s running or frolicking or whatever he and his running friends do. At the end of the day, I just want to hang out with him (selfish much?), but I know I should give him just a little more time to do what he loves. And how he loves running, I seriously do not know.

2. Make him food.

He’s a better cook than I am, but there’s some things I can do that he can’t. Also, he works all day long, so it’s a treat when I heat something up and make it look pretty on a plate. 

3. Encourage him to use his gifts.

Turn off the TV, Justina. Turn it off, and stop distracting your bae from doing the things he loves. You know he loves drawing and cooking, so go play your guitar and encourage that creative time at the Murzyn house.

4. Take care of myself.

Men are providers who want to know that house and home are cared for. Happy wife, happy life is no hearsay. While this may sound easy, we all know self-care and work/life balance take work, baby. And of course, saying what I need is important (I totally fall into girl-trap of claiming, “It’s fine” when it’s completely not fine). 

There are so many more ways (duh) of loving him, but they are more nuanced and you don’t know them till they pop up. So, I’m finding the secret to love is anticipating and listening and being present. You know, the hard stuff.