My Dad always makes the point that you officially and spiritually become one within the marriage ceremony. But the real process of actually merging into one is something that takes time - bumps - and the work of a gracious God over...time.
On the one hand - where have SEVEN years gone??? On the other hand, WOW. God has jam packed those seven years with a lot of punch :).
You know - marriage will never been a lesson learned that I can scratch off the list. As long as I live I will keep learning - and especially as long as we have two people unafraid of confrontation!!! LOL. So in my wifely wifiness I have not arrived in any way shape or form. But I've learned lessons I am so grateful to say.
Zion and I met when we were 17 and 18 years old. CRAZY! From where I sit now - we were little babies :). But we were immediately drawn to each other like magnets and we knew that we knew - we'd seen what we wanted. I'll take one of those please! We dated for five years before we got married. Wouldn't recommend that for everyone but we were in college and so it worked for us. I was so drawn to Zion at the beginning and I still am today. He's been my friend, my partner, my forever love and my favorite person.
I thought that I'd just take a moment (or two!) to jot down a few of the biggest lessons I've learned thus far:
- A good marriage is a choice made by both partners day after day, week after week. Some weeks one make more efforts and then it may flip. Being willing to be the 'one' to make that choice is never a bad choice and it always pays off.
- Opposites do attract. But, my observation is that it's a heck of a lot easier to enjoy marriage if you enjoy spending your time in some of the same ways. Again and again, the bed of friendship will sustain your marriage when fleeting emotions flee you. Friendship is frankly just kind of hard if you don't like to do at least some of the same things with your time. A word to the dating among us :)
- Sex is important. No duh right??? As women - I think we can get pretty weird about sex. Honestly - there's a lack of teaching about sex for women in the church. It's easy to fall into routine, to get too tired, or to stop pursuing the development of your sex life. Perhaps a little too straightforward for a blog I'm beginning to wonder?? LOL - oh well - I've already gone this far. Let me just say this - sex is meant to be fun for the husband and for the wife. But it only gets fun if you keep learning, growing, and working at it. It's the most sacred part of the marriage relationship and therefore there is a lot of reason for it to be attacked. As a wife, I have become fiercely protective of that element of our marriage. I'll be darned if my lack of effort were ever to leave a vulnerability or weakness in our marriage. You know I'm not saying that it's all up to the wife right?! Just speaking to that because I'm guessing I don't have many male readers lol.
- Make space for marriage to stay fresh. It doesn't just happen organically - at least seven years in! Do little fun things together - whether they cost money or not. If things in the schedule get too busy for too long - stop everything. Cancel committments, reschedule coffee dates with your girlfriends, find a way to meet up for lunch, go for a coke date, get in a workout together....anything. Know when to stop the never-ending cycle of business and just clear space for togetherness.
- Be on his team. Even when you don't feel it. He has to know that you're always always always behind him and if he goes down - you're going down together. And if he goes up - you'll be right by his side - not loving him because of his success but being more proud of him than words can say.
- Love him like a strong man and a boy. I feel crazy writing it - but there's no denying that all men like to feel that tenderness that sometimes we reserve only for our babies. Just sayin.
So thankful that we are here seven years later. So thankful that God has brought us through. I love him today more than I could have ever imagined. By the grace of God - no seven year itch in sight!
Here's to looooooots more learning!