Gemmia told me that I needed to buy myself something special to commemorate the achievement. I thought about it for more than a week. I decided that I would buy two peach-colored armchairs. I wanted to be able to sit in and on that money! I had them custom made and I still have them today.

The chairs were just the beginning. When my husband and I bought our home, I was determined to make it everything I ever wanted and more. I had started with the kitchen, which had to be torn down and rebuilt. Next, I wanted a sauna room with a hot tub. I decided to wait, and instead I built a sun room onto the side of the house. My husband was all for it until the work began. Then he got quiet. I asked him what was wrong. I asked three or four times before I got an honest response.

He said, "This is your house, not our house." He felt bad that I was paying for everything and he could not contribute. I reminded him that we were partners and that I didn't consider the house or the money mine. It was ours. I felt that my job as a wife was to make our home as comfortable and beautiful as possible. I wanted him to participate, and it did not matter to me who paid. The truth is that he had to participate because I was never home.

Since he was unhappy anyway, I decided to proceed with the construction of my sauna room. He bought into the idea and even suggested that we build a stairway from our bedroom down to the sauna room so that we wouldn't have to walk through the house if we wanted to use it late at night. While construction was going on, I kept traveling and working.

©Iyanla Vanzant 2010. All rights reserved. Reprinted with the permission of SmileyBooks.