Love & Marriage

Seventeen Years Later

I can scarce believe I’ve been married to my best friend for 17 years now! We married young. God blessed it anyway, lol! We grew together, God saw us through that too. I don’t know if there is a formula for what we have going on here but I have to say that faith in God plays a huge role. Once I realized that God didn’t promise all good days, but rather the grace to see us through, I just knew it was going to be okay.

I spy out marriages around me. Some i want to create a patent for. Some I want to throw into the sea of forgetfulness! Here are some lessons we have learned from both.

Make each other laugh! Yep, me the proverbial prude enjoys my husband’s corny jokes. And he enjoys my bitingly sarcastic ones. We get each other on the funny level. I text him funny memes that I know he would get a good laugh from. Nothing like coming home with a funny story to share with your boo.

Don’t make comparisons. I once had an acquaintance start off her comment to me with “Whenever I see you guys on Sunday, you always look happy…” Stop the madness! We sell ourselves short when we look at another’s relationships and think it’s all kosher. Sure, we can learn from each other but at day’s end, there are no two marriages alike. Besides, my husband is a pastor. Sunday is the guaranteed day that we don’t get on each other’s nerves, lol!

Do what works for you. We both are from Caribbean backgrounds. We have taken what best serves our marriage and left behind what doesn’t. I work a job with a heads or tails type of schedule. There’s no standing over the stove every day like my mother used to do. His hours are more flexible than mine. So if he can shop for the groceries and I come home to prep and throw it in the crockpot, that’s just how we roll. I know of wives who mow the lawn and husbands who stay at home with the kids. Don’t let some unhappy hag make you feel like you are coming up short! #ANBGT4Dat

Fight fair. I heard a Christian counselor once say, the fighting shouldn’t be an issue as long as you fight fair. Hear each out. No demeaning one another. No using profanity. No bringing up things that were already forgiven for. You have two warring personalities that will not necessarily see eye to eye on the matter of child-rearing, finances, the future. It’s okay to hash it out. Make time for those tough conversations. Take the gloves off and duke it out fair and square. Walk away with solutions and a plan to meet at the same time and same place to talk again.

Put God in the middle of it. I started off marrying a man I was equally yoked to. One who didn’t think twice about praying over me before he left the house, or seeking God for the next phase in our marriage. I couldn’t imagine being with someone with whom I would eventually have nothing in common with. How would you raise your children? What would your priorities look like? If that significant other isn’t on par with your spiritual priorities and faith, then the battle is lost before it’s begun.

There is no fountain of marital youth. Just couples around the world on their daily grind: making ends meet, raising children, saving up for homes, paying for fertility treatments, caring for elderly parents, raising younger siblings, starting businesses together, and so on and so forth. All the while making it look good by the grace of God.

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