Dear Jared

You asked me this morning as you were leaving if I was mad at you.

I told you I wasn’t, and I meant it.

I also told you that I was just stressed, that I was carrying a lot on my shoulders right now and it was hard.

You told me to let you take some of it. I snapped and told you that you couldn’t, that you knew that you couldn’t. I tried to salvage the goodbye conversation with an “I love you” and a “don’t worry about it”, but I’m pretty sure the last impression was already cemented.

I don’t say the words as well as I write them, sometimes.

I know when I say “I’m carrying a lot and it’s hard”, you hear “I’m carrying too much”. I know when you say “let me take some of it”, you mean it. I love that. I hear that, and I hear that you’re willing to do anything to make me happy.

Thank you for that. Truly.

“I’m carrying a lot and it’s hard” doesn’t mean I want you to carry it. The extra work, the extra financial stuff – we already know it’s not something you can do right now. I get that. We get that. And I am 150% OK with that.

When I say “it’s hard” I don’t mean “and I blame you for making it hard”.

When I say “it’s hard” I mean “know that it’s hard. See that it’s hard, and cheer me on.”

That’s what I need most from you. To know that I’m not struggling in the dark. To be reminded that it’s part of something bigger – that it’s my part of our something bigger.

Love. Encouragement. And yes, a thank you – not because I think I’m doing more than my fair share, but because sometimes it’s nice to be told thank you even for doing the shit you’re supposed to do. It’s extra, I know. But sometimes, when it’s hard, it’s the extra that keeps you going.

So no, baby. I’m not mad.

I’m tired. I’m stressed. I’m working my ass off with no visible results right now and I’m searching frantically for the positive reinforcement I need to keep going.

I need you to be that positive reinforcement. Because no one’s cheering in the whole world has the power that yours does. No one’s approval or support or love or gratitude holds a candle to the acknowledgment that only you can give.

I love you,


P.S. If you could also explain to me how it is that you are not pulling your hair out for some alone time, that would be awesome. Because my mom and I are coming up with a few theories of our own and – well – let’s just say you might want to cut us off.

P.P.S A blog post? I know. I’m working on my communication skills.

P.P.P.S I also think that a back rub says “wow, you are doing awesome! Good job! Keeping going!” really well. If you’re looking for ideas. I mean, I don’t want to tell you how to do your job or anything. I’m just saying, that’s an option.

P.P.P.P.S You forgot to pack Emma’s lunch this morning.

P.P.P.P.P.S But you made coffee, so, YAY! Coffee!

P.P.P.P.P.P.S I really do love you more than life itself. XO

UPDATE: Apparently your daughter is a liar and you did in fact make lunch you just didn’t pack the right lunch and she doesn’t wannnnnt Jello and whyyyyy does she have to have Jello and wahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh… Daaaaaaddddddddeeeeeeeee…. waaaaaahhhhhhhhhh….

So scratch that part.

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