Why I Do It
September 25, 2007

A few days ago, one of Jared's old buddies from Maine called to share the great news that his wife is expecting. From what Jared told me, it was your standard pregnancy conversation with comments like:

"Aw, that's great man!" and "We couldn't be any happier for you guys!" and "Seriously, congratulations dude. I'm so stoked."

But before they got off the phone, there was a quick change in the direction of the conversation. According to Jared, Mike's voice became more serious, as though he was preparing to drop some sort of bombshell on my husband.

"Dude, I've gotta let you know that your wife has a blog, and I read it. I don't know if you know about the blog or not, but she writes about all of your fights. I mean, she tells everyone all the details of your arguments."

When Jared relayed the conversation to me, I got the distinct impression that Mike doesn't exactly like what I do--it occurred to me that he might it find disrespectful. And of course, it stopped me in my tracks.

I started to do a bit of self-examination, and asked myself a very tough question--Why do I do what I do?

Do I put my husband, my child and myself on the line every single day to get a laugh? Yes, I absolutely do. Do I do it to humiliate or degrade my family? No, of course not.

You've got to understand that Jared Lawson is the undisputed love of my life. I have more respect for my husband than I do for any other person in this world. He is the most honest, sincere, and forgiving person that I have ever known. But the characteristic that I admire most about Jared, is his willingness to change and his propensity toward self-betterment. Never in my life have I met a man who is so willing to put himself in a position of vulnerability in order to tackle his weaknesses.

Jared thanks me every single day for the work I do to keep this family running. He trusts me with our finances, and compliments me every time a wear a bit of makeup. He's never missed any of my races, and has taught James how to yell "Go Mommy!" when I run by them on the course. Jared is 100% confident that I will qualify for the Boston Marathon, or accomplish any other goal that I put my heart into.

Despite all of his wonderful qualities, marriage is quite certainly the toughest project I've ever taken on. Jared is stubborn, and generally impossible when he's stressed. His text messaging might land us in the poor house, and I swear he likes to keep the air conditioner at its 'freezer setting.'

Yes, I know, these are minor inconveniences, and little quirks like those should never weaken a strong and happy marriage. But I'm sorry to say that they do. If you look at the national divorce rate, which hovers somewhere between 40 and 50%, I would have to guess that 'the little quirks' can easily overtake the 'wonderful qualities,' and I refuse to let that happen to me.

I make light of my husband's minor shortcomings for a very simple reason--they deserve to be made fun of. I take his major struggles seriously, I take his strengths and talents very seriously, and I don't take his minor flaws seriously at all.

I do what I do because my marriage is far from perfect, and I'm unwilling to put on a show. That would offer nothing to me, my husband, or the reader.

I do what I do because marriage is ridiculously difficult, and I want my readers to know that they're not alone in their frustrations.

I poke fun at my mothering for the very same reason. Parenting can really beat you down if you let it--I try not to let it.

I'm not perfect--that's the one thing I'll certainly never be able to change. But I'm going to have as much fun with my imperfections as I possibly can.

That's why I do what I do.

28 comments:

Brad and Becks said...

AMEN to that!

Rob & Katy said...

off topic- so does that make 20, now?

Melinda said...

Awesome post, Amy.

Cheryl said...

OK, I have to admit when I first read your blog I said, "Oh my goodness, she certainly doesn't sound like a Mormon!" And from time to time when you write about your husband, I say, Poor Jared! But I have also said Poor Amy -- like when he hides and jumps out to scare you. But mostly it's just refreshing that you are willing to tell the world about your family, "warts and all." That takes guts. Plus, best of all, you're HILARIOUS and very entertaining! Keep up the good work.

Amy said...

Ohhhhh.....yeah, it's like 20.

RunningCrazyAfter3 said...

This is probably my favorite post of yours so far. Very well put. Although not married, I very much enjoy telling stories when my kids are being ornery little punks as opposed to bragging on them. But I'm sure that makes for lots of people who believe I have a couple of holy terrors on my hands...and I'm good with them thinking that ;)

I do, however, have to crack up at the fact that one of Jared's friends had a heart-to-heart with him about it! It's like you are having an affair! LOL

Iggy Bloggit said...

you mean you've been stringing us along and you actually LOVE your husband? i'm outta here, i'm going to find a blog that is truly cynical and hateful.

just kidding [obviously] but just so you know--as someone who does not know you personally i've always been able to read between the lines and realize how much you love your family!

Mother Smuckers said...

Hi Mike -- Get a life!

krystyn said...

Great post...your posts are hilarious!!

Felicia said...

I hear you loud and clear. My husband is a Marriage and Family Therapist and I always get asked if we have "the perfect marriage" or if he "therapizes" me.
Everyone has quirks, and they deserve to be laughed about--that's what keeps us all going.
By the way, we do have the perfect marriage. He clips his toenails with these weird scissors and it drives me crazy, and I hit snooze too many times in the morning and drive him crazy, and we're happy as can be--flaws and all.

Erin said...

Wonderful post! The humor you find in life's annoyances reminds me to do the same and I am happier bc of it~ THANK YOU!

MillerFam said...

I say Amen to that as well.Great post, keep up the good work!!

Marcy said...

You've GOTTA have a sense of humor with marriage, parenting, and just life in general otherwise it's b-o-r-i-n-g ;-) You rock Amy!

Vanilla said...

Great post Amy.

Amy said...

No, no, no...I love Mike. He's the best...just watching out for his buddy :o)

Grandma said...

you go girl...and nice "shout out" to Jared!!

CollegeGirl said...

Awesome post. And honestly, I've never thought down on you for what you write. I think it's entertaining and honest, and I never think your posts are meant to be intentionally heartless or mean.

Keep it up!

Jason and Sarah said...

LOVE IT! Love every word of your post. That's all I have to say!

J~mom said...

I love that you are being real. That was back in the 50s when moms tried to act like everything was perfect. Then by the 70s they were all on drugs. Well maybe not;.0. The best thing we can do today is admit that life is not perfect, laugh together and then keep on keeping on. :>)

Taryn said...

Amy - I am pretty new to your blog, but please know that I NEVER thought your blogs were disrespectful of your husband, your marraige, or motherhood.

I find your blog refreshing and an open and real look into another life!

Maggie said...

I always tell people the same thing. Marriage is not a cake walk! It's not flowers and back rubs every night!

katieo said...

Great Post!
I think one of the reasons your "marital squabble" posts are so funny is because everyone relates in one way or another.

Imperfections somehow become way less important when they're made fun of.

Loved reading this, it was a great reminder to not sweat the small stuff.

Sue said...

I think your love for your family shines through everything you write.

Amy said...

I would guess that Jared must have known about your sassiness when he decided to marry you, and he probably factored that into his decision. In fact, I bet it tipped the scales in your favor. The real problem would be if you had never said one sarcastic and/or honest thing to his face, but were secretly keeping this blog (which seems to be what Mike thought).

Mary said...

I love this post, Amy. And I love your sense of humor and writing style. I'm sorry we haven't gotten to know you and Jared better. But then we are probably older than your parents. I've decided to let my hair grow out. Once everyone can see how much white hair I have, I'll have to start sitting on the back row of the chapel!

Penny said...

You rock Amy. And thank goodness you do. And thank goodness you do it well.

RosieRunner said...

Amy, from my perspective (the ripe old age of 47) you're very young, but darn it, you've got a smart perspective on the whole marriage thing. It's hard work, certainly. It's also the best fun you can have that's legal and socially acceptable.

Good luck being young, and funny, and working towards the best marriage you can figure out how to create.

And should you ever come to Seattle to run or ride your bike, please blog about it and I'll meet you for a couple laps around Green Lake.

RosieRunner

P.O.M. said...

I'm new to your blogs too, but I think your humor and wit is awesome. And your marriage (flaws and all) is one to admire. You seem so open and honest - isn't that what marraige is about?

Keep it up.