AMY KIRK: Marriage happy when wife has problems for husband to fixI’m a creative person, and I enjoy putting my creativity to work for my husband. As his supportive spouse, it’s my job to be encouraging and helpful.
By: Amy Kirk, The Daily Republic
I’m a creative person, and I enjoy putting my creativity to work for my husband. As his supportive spouse, it’s my job to be encouraging and helpful.
In addition to creating a comfy home environment and home-cooked meals, I create, on a fairly regular basis, problems for him to remedy. I give him plenty of opportunities in meeting his need to analyze and find solutions for things. He’s never come out and said it, but I think deep down he appreciates my efforts to support his problem-solving interests. I make these opportunities possible so he can stay brushed up on his analytical skills for figuring out, fixing or making his own version of whatever it is we have to have to keep our place humming along.
I’m short on patience when it comes to figuring out how to take care of problems I know nothing about, or how stuff like plumbing, electrical or complicated automotive systems function. My husband doesn’t have much patience either, but it’s in his DNA to find solutions to problems and understand the mechanics of how things work. His genetic need to troubleshoot won’t allow him to leave a problem unresolved or be taken care of by someone else (me). His other rancher genetic makeup is being too proud to allow my/our problems to get fixed by someone else (me). (We’re married, so what’s mine is his.)
He feels it’s his duty to take care of issues himself, regardless of his level of expertise in dealing with undesirable developments that arise on our place, be it household, vehicle/equipment or ranchrelated. Part of troubleshooting is knowing the mechanics of a machine or system. Once he figures that out, he can start brainstorming solutions, but he usually experiences learning how something works and the problem simultaneously — especially the ones I create for him.
The process of getting something working again doesn’t always come easy for him, either. Like me, he gets aggravated when solutions don’t surface quickly, but I usually give up and try to adapt, whereas he’ll work on a solution. Our ranch is the perfect classroom for little analytical experiments, but I have been instrumental in providing my hubby with his most challenging problems.
There’s somewhat of a competition between our cows and me to see who can provide the most solution-seeking opportunities for my husband. Cows can break things, but I can ruin stuff.
Shortly after we moved to where we live now, I forgot to shut the water off on the garden and the well went dry. The 40-year-old jet pump system set up in the root-cellar basement of our home burned up along with it. That’s been the biggest problem-solving opportunity I was ever able to provide him. It kept him occupied for a week trying to retrofit an upgraded submersible pump system into our antiquated well.
Watching my husband in action on that project opened my eyes to his capacity for analyzing problems and finding solutions. Getting the system upgraded was a big undertaking. During the process, I learned something about myself: I’m way better at drawing conclusions than I am at solving problems. I discovered that the person to rely on for the most challenging problems I create should be a professional.
Amy and her husband raise their two kids on a fourth-generation cow/calf operation near Pringle. Her blog can be found at ranch-wifeslant.areavoices.com.