I was coming home from a trip. It would be the first time that my husband wouldn’t be there to pick me up. I hadn’t really thought about it until we pulled into the dock. I saw women on the boat start waving to their significant others. I saw their lovers, boyfriends, husbands smile and wave back.
I was so hurt.
Where was my husband?
Why had he chosen to leave?
Why couldn’t I have him here to pick me up?
My heart hurt just to think of it.
I was so terribly sad.
I started to pick up my luggage and walk down the ramp to the terminal. I hated that I felt so alone. I hated that I didn’t have a husband to pick me up anymore. I watched the other couples and then, I started to think…
I didn’t know what was going on in their marriages. Yes, they had husbands to pick them up. Yes, they might be a couple but that didn’t mean that they were happy. How many times had my husband come to pick me up and been angry that he had to do it? How many times had he been upset when the boat I was on was late? Or the plane?
We looked happy to everyone else who saw us but I knew, as soon as he had me alone, he would let me know how I had put him out by having him come to pick me up.
How many times had we argued in the car all the way home?
I was missing something I never truly had.
I was wanting what the other couples I saw had… not even knowing if they were truly happy.
Who knows what goes on in another person’s life?
Who knows what goes on in another couple’s marriage?
They have their own problems to work out and their own happiness to find.
I was feeling sorry for myself.
So I didn’t have a husband to pick me up. So I didn’t have something that someone else had. That didn’t mean that I was worse off for it. It wasn’t better or worse… It just was.
I needed to stop wanting what other people had and be happy with what I did have. Someday, maybe I would have a husband to pick me up from the boat, to wave and smile, and maybe we would be truly happy.
Today though, it is just me. I can choose to be miserable… to wallow in self-pity for what I don’t have… to believe that if I just had what others had that I would be truly happy or… I can choose to smile, to wave, to walk the ramp from the boat… alone… and be happy with what I do have; myself.
“Dear God, help me to appreciate what I have, instead of longing for what I want. Help me to remember that what I want may not be what I truly need.”
Photo Credit: Paul Bradley