04/09/2013 AT 8:00 PM ET
Julianna Margulies waited 41 years to become a real-life good wife – and she s savoring every minute of it.
“I feel very grateful that I had the courage to say no when I did and say yes when I could, that I waited to find the right mate and to have this little family,” Margulies, now 46, tells Good Housekeeping in its May cover story. “There’s something about this time in my life where I feel like it’s never going to get better.”
The wedding surprised the Emmy-winning star, who had convinced herself she was “not the marrying kind.” But her mother – who split with Margulies’s father when she was just a year old – convinced her to be open to the idea of matrimony.
Says Margulies: “She said, ‘Oh, honey, every woman should get married. I loved being married … Just try it at least once.’ ”
She got her opportunity in 2006 when she met Lieberthal at a friend’s birthday party. “I said to him, ‘Listen, I’m going to be leaving in 10 minutes because I’m sure you’re an actor and I have sworn off [your type],’ ” she said. “And he said, ‘Well, that’s good. I’m a lawyer.’ Then he poured me a big glass of red wine, I stayed the entire dinner – and that was it.”
Today, she says the couple stays connected through regular date nights, and she credits her husband for supporting her hectic life as a TV star and mom.
“I married a rock, who understands what I do without any resentment,” she says. “And I’ve got a joyful, easy kid.”