We love marriage. How many times have you heard us say that? 1,000? Maybe more? It’s our anthem, a HUGE part of each of our hearts and stories, and one of the biggest driving forces in our business. We believe in the incredible power of a committed marriage relationship and in working hard and selflessly on that relationship, day in and day out, for our spouse.
But just because we believe in these things, just because we are “passionate” about marriage, doesn’t mean it comes “easier” for us.
I will be the first to admit that I can be a really, really bad wife. I have a lot of flaws, let’s be honest with each other here, and one of them is stubbornness. When it comes to my relationship with Caleb, I don’t like to be wrong and I don’t like to admit that I’m wrong. When I get upset, I immediately think that I am right — no ifs, ands, or buts — and Caleb better be the one to apologize first. Because he’s wrong. And I’m right.
What I just wrote? That is NO way to live, trust me. When we were going through pre-marriage counseling, we had the great honor of meeting with an incredible couple, Mark and Peggy, and I will never forget a story they shared with us.
When their kids were younger (mind you, their kids are now all grown and married with their own kids!), they got into a heated argument. Hurtful words were exchanged and for the next TWO YEARS, they found themselves living with intense resentment, disconnect, and significant distance in their relationship. They told us that it was the most challenging season of their marriage — all because of ONE single conversation — and they greatly regret that they can never get those two years of their lives back. It WASN’T worth it.
When I get mad at Caleb and I find myself thinking those selfish, stubborn thoughts, I immediately think of Mark and Peggy. And I am thankful for their vulnerability. Because I don’t want to live ANY season of my life in deep conflict with my husband that could be fixed by a (hard) conversation, (hard) work, humbling myself (that’s hard, too), seeking council or wisdom from others (also hard) because life is short — a cliché saying, but plain and simple, true.
Although at first I’m angry and am convinced there is NO way I am apologizing, if I just give myself time and space to “cool down,” I am able to think about how much more I enjoy life with Caleb when we are getting along. I am also able to see the mistakes I made in our conversation and own up to them in my head. I can then usually (again, I’m not perfect) convince myself to take that first step towards reconciliation with my husband. And it is ALWAYS worth it in the end. Life is SO much sweeter when we are working together towards harmony in our marriage.
Pretending like we have it figured out isn’t going to serve anyone.
That’s why I’m sharing this post with you today. If you’ve been following our blog for any amount of time, you know that Caleb is the one who usually writes our Marriage Monday posts. That’s because Caleb is wise. Don’t me get wrong, he isn’t perfect, but it’s much easier for him to write these posts because he is a good learner when it comes to our marriage and he is committed to the everyday betterment of our marriage. I want you to learn from him and not from me ; ) kidding … kind of.
I don’t want to live with regret in my marriage. I don’t want to come to the end of my life or, God forbid, the sudden end of Caleb’s life, and think, “Wow, I wasted it.” I don’t want to live in selfishness or stubbornness or pride — especially in my marriage. I want to give to and ENJOY my husband and my time with him, every. single. day. How about you?