I am compassionate by nature. I am also a problem solver. Seeing a man with struggles gave me purpose. I wanted so bad to help. I wanted to be there to pick him up, give hope and send him on the right path.
But I didn’t think about myself. I’m not perfect. I have struggles. What about the help I needed? The thought of putting myself first seemed selfish so I continued down my righteous path and dated asshole after asshole.
Years after meeting my husband, I finally figured out why this relationship was different.
He pushes me to do things outside of my comfort zone.
When we were dating, my husband wouldn’t see me some days so he could go to a martial arts class or to the gym after work. It forced me think of myself and my hobbies. I didn’t want to sit around waiting for him so I found things to do. Hot yoga is what I found and I loved it. I would never have discovered how much I enjoy sweating had it not been for my husband.
Years later, after we were married, I mentioned I wanted to take a self defense class. For Christmas, he paid for a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu instructor to teach me some techniques. I loved it. A year later, I started Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Why a year? It took him that long to convince me I wasn’t too old or too busy. That’s love.
He pushes me to eat healthier.
I am Indian American. I grew up eating 4 meals a day- breakfast, lunch at school, a full meal when I got home at 3, and dinner at 8. I ate a lot. Fried food. Carbs. When I started dating my husband, I’d notice the types of foods he gravitated towards. By then I ate salads to maintain weight and it took me years to realize carbs are not evil. My husband has always had a healthy mindset and balance. I’ve learned to eat in moderation and exercise often.
He pushes me to exercise knowing it will make me feel better.
And no he doesn’t do this because he thinks I’m fat though I thought that for a while. If I am stressed with work, he asks me when I’m going to exercise because he knows I’ll feel better when I do. He doesn’t press on the topic or force it, he gives just a simple reminder. Do it for yourself, you deserve it. I get angry at times. Being a full time working mother, I don’t always have the time to exercise, right? Wrong. He’s taught me that I can make the time to do something for myself and that I deserve it.
He pushes me to follow through on what I say.
When I say I want to try something new or learn a new hobby, he pushes me to follow through. At the start of the pandemic, I mentioned I wanted to learn guitar. He had an old one in the attic that he took out, cleaned up and gave me to use. Later that day I was watching you tube and learning some basic chords.
For the past couple years, I’ve said I want to home brew. I haven’t followed through. He reminds me often. I guess it’s time to start listening to him!
He pushes me to love myself
After having children, I got upset about my c-section pouch. As I age, I struggle with my grays. Yet, there is not one morning he doesn’t kiss me and tell me I’m beautiful. And this is first thing in the morning!
He is constantly reminding me how much I’ve done and how far I’ve come. From being unhealthy and unathletic to developing good eating and exercise habits, my body is beginning to show it. He makes me see improvements rather than focusing on an end goal.
I’ve been married 10 years and we’ve been together for 12. The personal growth I’ve had in this time is a tribute to how much my husband has pushed me. He’s increased my self-awareness, strength and confidence. He is my rock.
A healthy relationship doesn’t drag you down, it inspires you to be better. — Mandy Hale
You deserve to be with someone who makes you better, who pushes you in the right direction, who cares about your health and well being and who makes you take a deep look at yourself and evaluate. You owe it to yourself to find this person. If you’re not with him or her now, move on. Being with someone who contributes to your growth is essential to your happiness. Trust me.