After reading GBear's post about going home and wondering how her husband kept up with the "household" duties while she was away for 3 months, I was reminded of some of the things my husband and I have learned about each other over the years when one of us is unable to "fulfill our duties" around the house.
More to the point: I learned that my brain can multitask and his can not. And, he has a really hard time dealing with the fact that he can not help when he feels he should be (i.e. when he was recovering from being wounded in Iraq).
Multitasking: I went in to labor when I was 32 weeks pregnant with our daughter (our son had just turned 3). The docs stopped my labor and put me on bed rest until I reached 36 weeks. HAH!!! Me? Sit around on my butt for a month? These docs had not idea who they were dealing with... but I listened anyway (kinda).
One day in particular I had asked my husband to vacuum the living room. No big deal, right? Well, every time he turned off the vacuum to move or pick something up, I gave him another task to do after vacuuming. I think I gave him about 4 more things to do in about 15 minutes time. He was NOT happy! He turned off the vacuum, looked at me and said, "Do YOU want to vacuum??? I can only do one thing at a time!!!" ooops. I started crying, of course, b/c I was pregnant and hormonal and my husband rarely raises his voice to me. He apologized and we got over it, but it was something to keep tucked away in my mental "notes to self" folder.
Recovering from wounds: I won't go into much detail in this arena b/c there were many instances where my husband felt so helpless and overall useless for a number of months after being wounded. Plus, it's actually quite personal on his part and I don't want to "expose" too much.
After returning from Walter Reed, my husband was heavily medicated and was "laid up" for a couple of months. We had good days, bad days, and REALLY bad days. It was a roller coaster from he## on our family, relationship, and emotions. During that time, I came to realize how much he felt the need and desire to "provide" for his family in any capacity. Not because he felt it was his "duty" as the man in the house, but b/c he truly wanted to provide for us.
This realization, for me, showed me how much he truly loved and honored me and our children. My husband has never been a "tell your feelings" kind of guy, so sometimes I struggled with what he thought about regarding our family. Of course I knew he loved us. I can't really describe what I mean, but this experience, as awful as being wounded is, opened a new door in our relationship as a couple and in our family. For that, I am truly grateful.