Richard Evans is a well-known American writer with more than 25 published novels. As every prolific writer, part of his professional career is occupied by the constant trips he must make across the country to speak and publicize his work.
This led him to deteriorate his relationship with his wife Kerri. Miraculously, just as the marriage was on the verge of disaster, Richard had a kind of revelation that changed his mind and saved his marriage.
Keep reading to see what was the secret that saved Richard's marriage:
My oldest daughter, Jenna, told me not so long ago: "One of my biggest fears when I was a child It was that you and mom divorced. When I turned 12, I came to the conclusion that the fights were so constant that it would be better if you split up. " Then, with a smile, he told me: "I'm glad you noticed in time."
For years, my wife Keri and I argued daily. I really do not know what it is that led us to get married, since our personalities do not coincide in anything. The longer we were married, the more radical our differences seemed to be. That I found fame and fortune did not make our marriage more bearable. In fact it aggravated all our problems.
The tension between us increased to such an extent that the trips I had to make to promote my work became an escape route. Our constant struggle became so intense that it seemed impossible to fix the situation. We were always on the defensive and we forgot the feelings we once felt for each other. Our marriage was on the verge of disaster, the idea of divorce was growing with time.
Then, one day, while I was in the middle of a tour promoting one of my novels, I had a kind of revelation. Just before I had argued again with my wife on the phone. I felt completely alone, frustrated and angry. I had reached my limit. At that point I left everything in the hands of God. I do not know if I could call it prayer, because yelling at God is not a prayer, but whatever it is, I will never forget what happened.
I was standing in the hotel shower shouting to God to give me a solution. As much as I hated the idea of divorce, staying together was too painful. I was completely confused, I could not understand how my marriage had become so difficult. Deep down, I always knew that Keri was a good person, I also considered myself a good person, so why did not it work? Why had I married someone so different from me?
Finally, completely broken and sunken I sat in the shower and cried like a child. Then, suddenly, I had a revelation, a kind of inspiration that made me think with all certainty that I could not change Keri. I should not change it. I could only change myself.
I prayed a lot. I prayed all night. I prayed the next day while taking a flight home. I prayed as I went through the door and approached a cold wife who barely recognized me. That night, when we were lying on the bed, barely a few centimeters apart but it seemed to be miles, I knew what to do.
The next morning, while still in bed, I went to Keri and asked, "What can I do? to do to improve your day? "
Keri looked at me angrily. "What?"
Me: "How can I improve your day?"
"You can not," she said. "Why do you ask me?"
"Because I mean it," I said. "I just want to know what I can do to improve your day."
"Do you want to do something? Go and clean the kitchen. He told me cynically.
She probably expected me to be angry. I, on the other hand, just nodded, got up and cleaned the kitchen. The next day I asked him the same thing. "What can I do to improve your day?"
His eyes narrowed, "Clean the garage."
I took a deep breath, I was expecting a very busy day, and I knew she had said it to get me crazy . Still, instead of bursting I nodded, got up and cleaned the garage for the next two hours. Keri was not sure what to think anymore. The next morning arrived. "What can I do to improve your day?"
"Nothing!" She said. "You can not do anything. Please, stop saying that. "
" I'm sorry, "I replied. "But I can not. I committed myself. What can I do to improve your day? "
" Why are you doing this? "
" Because I care about you and our marriage or ".
The next morning I asked again. And the next. And the next. Then, one of the days of the week a miracle happened.
While I was asking the question , Keri's eyes filled with tears. Seconds later, he broke down crying. When he could speak, he said: "Please, stop asking me that question. You are not the problem. I am. I am very problematic. I do not know how you are still with me. "
Then I gently lifted her chin until I could look her in the eyes. "It's because I love you. What can I do to improve your day? "
" I should be asking you that, "she said still in sobs.
" You should, "I replied," But not now. Right now, I need to change myself, I need you to know everything you mean to me. "
At that moment she put her head against my chest. "I'm sorry I was so bad."
"I love you," I tell him.
"I love you," he replies.
"What can I do to improve your day?"
"Could we? spend some time together? "He said to me as he was smiling.
" I'd love it, "I smiled.
I kept asking him the same question for over a month. The situation between us changed completely. The discussions are over. Keri began to ask me how could I become a better wife?
The walls that once were between us they collapsed. We started having conversations in which we discussed what we expected from life or how we could be happier. I would be lying if I said that we never argued again, however, the tone of these fights changed completely. We did not want to hurt each other.
I've been married to Keri for more than 30 years. I love my wife, I like her, I love being at her side, I want her, I need her. Many of our differences have become strengths and those that remain do not matter to us. We have learned to take care of each other, and what is more important, we have recovered the desire to do it. Having someone to accompany you in life is an extraordinary privilege.
The question that every person in a relationship should be: "What can I do to improve your life?" That is love. True love is not to desire a person, but to desire their happiness, sometimes even at the expense of ours. True love causes us to increase our tolerance and try by all means to seek the welfare of another person.
I know that what happened between Keri and me will not work for everyone. I do not even think that all marriages have to be saved, but in my case, I will be eternally grateful for the inspiration that came to me at the hotel. I feel grateful that my family is healthy, because I can still enjoy my wife, my best friend, the person with whom I wake up every day. Even now, a few decades later, from time to time one still asks the other, "What can I do to make your day happy?" Listening to that question is something worth waking up to every day.
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