I had this lightbulb realization today.
I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t self centered. That’s not to say that I’m selfish, but my first reaction to things is to relate it to myself. People tell me a story about their friend who died in a freak boating accident and I’m the person who’s saying, “wow, I’m not boating without a lifevest anymore!” rather than “Are you OK, what can I do to help?” It’s not my greatest quality, but I’m aware it’s who I am and improvement can only come from that.
Part of being self centered is a constant need for recognition. Growing up, when my mother gave me speeches about utter disappointment in my behavior, it hurt way worse than any beating I could’ve received. I tear myself up inside to do my very best and make people proud. And really, I can’t imagine that I’m that much different than the entire population.
My realization, as I sat at work relishing in a lovely compliment I received, was that Matt doesn’t have constant validation. I support a client base at work. I provide support services for both internal and external customers and I’m constantly gifted with notes of “thank you” and “hell yea, good job!” I have multiple framed certificates of appreciation recognition in my office that remind me daily that I’m appreciated.
For a stay-at-home parent, they service a small client base. My husband provides support services, critical in most cases, to both the children and myself. I do my best to tell him, as often as I can without seeming ridiculous and obnoxious, that I appreciate and value him. He nourishes us with food, he ensures our environment is habitable, he pays our vendor bills, he runs all critical tasks so that the time we spend together as a family is of the utmost quality. And while doing this, he is mentoring and supervising our children, helping them to grow into the best people they can be (which has produced amazingly above standard results so far).
I’ve been told it’s better late than never, so on this 3 year anniversary of his endeavor to be the best stay- at-home-parent there ever was, I present this Certificate of Recognition and Appreciation on behalf of the entire family.