I am Not A Perfect Wife (and it’s plain silly sometimes)

My husband is beginning a grueling week of travel.

I have noticed that each time he travels, we get into pre-travel angsts and stresses.

Today was one of  those.

I am not a perfect wife. And while, it's plain silly sometimes, here's why.

We went to pick up a prescription at the pharmacy.

The lady at the counter tried to find my name on the computer but couldn’t seem find it.

My husband reckoned I needed to give my third name, not my second name.

(In America, if you have a third name, that’s your  “last name”. In Kenya, your last name is your second name, even if you have a third name…long story.)

So I go Kenyan – disagree with my husband – and give the lady my second name, again. And again. (after all the prescription carries my full name, I think to myself, even as I grow weary of the “what’s your name again” question)

Then the lady goes to another computer station at the back.

And asks for my date of birth.

From the back.

*Now I have to shout so she can hear my birth date.


I shout it out and exhale. Now we are done.

Then the lady asks for my date of birth again.

I stand there thinking “Everyone on this floor now knows my age!”

I snap something in Swahili in the direction of my husband. (not at him)

I expect him to understand my vexation and say something supportive in return.

An eerie silence, the one that often communicates his displeasure, swooshes my way instead.

How can he not be upset with with me!  I think through a clenched brain and shoot an aggravated look his way.

And come to think of it, had he not “sided” with the lady when he kept bugging me to give another name than what she was asking for  (turned out he was right though … #facepalm)

A short while later, we walk out of the pharmacy, totally miffed at one another.

Undoing silliness

But as we belt up in the car, I remember the upcoming travel.

And how I had prepped my mind and heart to avoid pesky pre-travel jitters and stresses.

Now I feel terrible for acting up with him and allowing angry words to leave my mouth.

I want to undo this mess.

I am supposed to have the basics of marriage (and Christianity) together.

Do not speak in anger.. (especially not in a language someone else does not understand). Be nice to your husband.

I spend my days thinking, writing and mentoring marriage..at the very least I could try master some basics!

I am not a perfect wife..and sometimes it's plain silly. Here's why.

Crafting our intentional happily-ever-after.

But this is where I (and you, dear reader) miss it.

High standards are great (we need high standards).  But perfection is a monster.

We’ll mess up. Our husbands will mess up.

We’ll do things to each that we can’t undo.

Long after the argument has died and the guests have left, you will realize that there’s nothing you can do to make up for what you said or did.

At that point you will have two options.

Stay mired in your issues – the guilt, the what ifs, the anger.

Or apologize…and move on.

Really move on.

The hardest part of our one-flesh journey is sometimes forgiving ourselves and admitting that we are not superwomen.

And that God never meant for us to be superwomen in the first place.

Stumbling and falling humbles us and reminds us we need God, why we need God.

One thing He constantly asks; look beyond the moment.

He asks us to remember what’s ahead, not what’s in the past.

The past serves deep lessons but it can’t be allowed to steal the future.

But steal the future it will, if we camp in the hill of our messes.

Your happily-ever-after isn’t made in a day.

A great marriage isn’t made (or broken) in a day.

It’s built one day at a time. One intentional grace-empowered choice at a time.

If you’ve been laying there, wallowing in what you did yesterday, wondering if you can survive the mistakes and hurts of the past, I write to tell you; Move on.

Happily-ever- after is still your potion, God still has a plan for your marriage.

But you need to get off that floor.

And start creating it. One day a time. One grace empowered-choice at a time.

Question: What area do you need to “let go” and forgive yourself/husband today?

*It wasn’t a shout really.. just real loud :)


If you would like to have Intentional Today delivered to your inbox, simply click here: Subscribe to Intentional Today (you will also receive a free copy of my eBook, Navigating Change). We can also connect on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter.


Linking with Titus 2sdays, we are That family, Messy Marriage, Wifey Wednesday 
  • http://www.messymarriage.com/ Beth Steffaniak

    I’ve been there, done that–not spoken in Swahili, mind you! But I’ve certainly let the stress of the moment open my mouth and empty out my agitated brain in my husband’s lap for all to see! But the great thing about you, Ngina, is that you learn from these times and you don’t fear admitting that you failed momentarily. I see that as teachable humility and it makes you the wonderful marriage mentor that you are, sweet girl! Loved this post and your wisdom, my friend!

  • http://sukofamily.org/ Caleb

    We have the “traveling angst” pretty often. It usually comes when we’re packing up and I’m getting frustrated because I want to leave in 30 mins and it seems like I’m the only one ready to go. I had to realize that my wife has a lot more to think about anytime we go somewhere, she’s pretty much responsible for our 5 kids and their packing too. Anyway, instead of getting upset and pointing to the time I try to ask, “what can I do to help us get ready?”

  • SheilaG

    Such a good post, Ngina! Thanks for linking up to Wifey Wednesday! I can just see your frustration in the drug store. I’m like that, too. :)

    • http://intentionaltoday.com/ Ngina Otiende

      Thanks Sheila, and thanks so much for stopping by! I love linking up, thanks for hosting!

  • http://danblackonleadership.com/ Dan Black

    Fantastic post here! Even though we are weak God is strong, thankfully:) We need His strength in a marriage.

    • http://intentionaltoday.com/ Ngina Otiende

      Amen to God’s strength Dan! It’s the key for a great marriage!

      • http://danblackonleadership.com/ Dan Black

        It sure is:) I hope your doing well.

  • http://theregoi.com/ floyd

    This is real life stuff here, Ngina. I appreciate your honesty and heart, sister. You and I are cut from the same cloth. We all need to take a deep breath and move on, God’s grace is sufficient. We do tend to take stress out on the ones that we really want to protect. You’re not alone, Ngina. Thanks for being so relatable.

    • http://intentionaltoday.com/ Ngina Otiende

      “Take a deep breath and move on”, – now how to remember to do that when I need to do it! (as opposed to looking back and wishing I had) :) Thank you Floyd, you encourage me, there’s hope for me yet :)

  • http://www.barbraveling.com/ Barb Raveling

    Go Nigina! I kept wanting to cut and paste quotes, but then I started thinking I would have to cut and paste the whole blog post it’s so good! (I think I’ll just pin it instead!) I love this post, Ngina – so great and helpful and practical.

    • http://intentionaltoday.com/ Ngina Otiende

      Thanks Barb, haha. I am glad it had helpful nuggets! Thanks for sharing it.

  • http://tcavey.blogspot.com/ TCAvey

    Forgiving self truly is hard, especially when you (I) don’t want to even acknowledge I need to forgive myself.
    God is so good to bring it to my attention. I am not superwoman and my husband is not superman.
    Eph 4:32 has been coming to mind throughout my blogging today. We must love with a tenderheart, we must forgive as we are forgiven- totally and without the need for “pay back”. We must give of ourselves and not expect anything in return. Only in Christ can we love like that.

    • http://intentionaltoday.com/ Ngina Otiende

      Only Christ can teach us to love like that TC, ..and help us know when we’ve sinned, need to forgive ourselves. It’s all so very “complicated” humanly speaking but our God is All Mighty, nothing is too difficult or complex for Him! Thank you for that verse and sharing.

      • http://tcavey.blogspot.com/ TCAvey

        Amen, nothings too complicated for Him!

  • http://www.lincolnparks.com/ Lincoln Parks

    Ngina, as a Husband I can forgive myself all the time :-) However, I do believe that when it comes to the choices we make, I can tend to push my wifes buttons. I know when do and not to, but end up apologizing after its too late. This is a great example of how communication of our feelings are so very important.

    • http://intentionaltoday.com/ Ngina Otiende

      Thank you for sharing Lincoln. I think realizing our mistakes and apologizing is a great step. The thing is learning not to push them in the first place… I am learning :)

  • Alexandra

    Ngina, thank you for sharing that little part of your life. It leaves hope for the rest of us imperfect wives!
    I can empathize on the travelling part of marriage. My husband travels about once a month. I usually feel a bit sad before he leaves and miss him a lot when he’s gone. So I can relate to feeling a bit on edge before he leaves. It’s difficult when he comes back too. So many adjustments.
    Thank you for your posts. They are always encouraging!

    • http://intentionaltoday.com/ Ngina Otiende

      Alexandra, glad that you relate! Adjustments when he comes back, I need to watch out for those. thank you for sharing