To date, and I say that very intentionally, my marriage is working because my husband and I are teammates. I don't say "to date" to be facetious. I understand that marriage is difficult and like many couples, my husband and I have looked at each other over the past 20 years a few times and said, "Are we going to be able to make it?" But to date, today, we are okay.
I think we're okay, because we continue to respect each other as teammates and help each other to live our dreams. It's not easy. I'd be lying if I said that I'm always the best wife, and he'd be lying if he said he's always the best husband but, for almost 20 years we've been, what we call the "hyphenated hustle." We say that because yes, we are hyphenated, Herndon and Brown, but also because we hustle. Not just for money, but for happiness. To me, hustle means work. It means doing whatever you have to do. When it comes to making me happy or trying to, my husband hustles. When it comes to providing for our family, I know that he will hustle. Likewise, he counts on me to be at a high level and tend to his needs, and most of all to being the most available, present, and nurturing mother I can be. The hyphenated hustle was very intentional. When we got married I told him I was going to keep my name, because I was the last Herndon in my family. He had no problem with that. Then he even said, "You know what? I'll take your name, because I want us to always be teammates."
We have this slogan based upon a cartoon that I had drawn for him when we were dating, for the whole three months that we were. If you know our story, you know that our love, our whirlwind love affair/marriage was a span that totaled three months. Check us out on our videos on our webpage. But I got a cartoon illustrated that says, "On the same squad." Ultimately, it is the definition of being teammates. We balance each other in terms of our familial responsibilities. We balance each other in terms of being giving in our marriage. As many of you know, we work together and have for the past 13 years, and we work together in our business. Teammates, know each others' roles and playing the part out. In my marriage I like the fact that I have a teammate. It's working. It's 20 years in. I know he's got me. I know he loves me, but more than anything he is my teammate, and I thank him for that.