DH got a scary reminder of how much he appreciates what I do this weekend. One of his co-worker's wives fell, hit her head, and is in critical condition in ICU. She is doing a little better today, but its still not sure if she's going to survive.
DH came home from the hospital, listened to our three kids and niece who spent the night running around with the dishwasher, washing machine and dryer all running in the background, and gave me a big ol' hug saying, quite honestly, that he doesn't know what he would do without me.
But over the last eleven years there have been plenty of weeks I have felt unappreciated. And so has, rightly, DH. We're both so busy it's hard not to feel like we don't get recognized for all we do.
I work part-time now, and am on the boards of some non-profit groups, so I currently get some recognition for work I do (paychecks, and end of the year little gifts for service from the boards), but in my years of only SAHMing, ugh. There was none of the tangible rewards to let me know that yes, someone doe appreciate all my work.
This is especially frustrating when the days are mixed with kids telling you you are ruining their lives (or whatever kid phrasing they are using at that age) because you made them turn off the TV and brush their teeth or do their homework or whatever task they are upset at being asked to do. Or the whole Groundhog Day-ness of doing the same things over and over and over just to have them immediately undone (clean dishes get dirtied, clean clothes get worn, the clean floors get stepped on by muddy shoes, etc.). That part is extremely unnerving to me, that everything I do from day to day seems useless.
I do sometimes look back at the scrapbook from the early years of my children's lives and just sit and appreciate for myself, all that I have done with and for the kids.