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I woke up last Friday knowing my mother-in-law was likely to die that day, wishing I could go back under the covers and sleep through it all. My first inclination was to try to be the best wife I could be, at least for one day. A friend called and encouraged me in the perfect kind of way, then, I made my guy a special breakfast of homemade muffins, bacon and fruit. It took all morning to accomplish since my foot’s not really up for all that, but in the end I was so glad I’d made the effort. It set the tone for a day of me showing my love for him any way I could. The phone rang just after we finished eating and while we were making plans to catch a flight up to Buffalo to be with family at his mom’s bedside, one last time.

That’s when I renewed my resolve to be there for my husband since now we’d be home with the sad news of her passing, unsure what the future held. Being the best wife I can be has a lot to do with listening and waiting for my husband to tell me what is on his mind. He’s not one to just shout that out. It is not about me asking him how he is, or telling him what I think, or expressing my own emotions or ideas. It is about me being available to him for whatever he needs at a time when, I know from experience, it is hard to get your bearings. I am a talker and a thinker and a doer. Quietly waiting for my attention to be required is challenging for me.

I am not sure how I did by him but at the end of the day I was proud of myself. Making extra space for him, someone I dare to take for granted at times, felt good, and right, and helpful, and loving, and all the things I want for him to be able to count on in me. And for my part, it has been a reminder of what I might strive to be more often.