Before I even complete one sentence, I want to make it abundantly clear that my marriage is wonderful and that the mister and I are quite happy. Please, don’t anybody worry. For my part at least, I love Andy more than I ever would have dreamed possible in 1995.
That being said, it occurred to us this week at we are only about eight weeks away from our 19th anniversary and once that passes, all of the 20th milestones will be upon us. First date, first kiss, first this or that…this spring it will be 20 years! While we truly are madly in love, we stopped for a while and discussed how much time has passed and how easy it is to get complacent in our relationship.
The reason that all of this came to mind is actually a sad one. We know a couple who has been planning on getting divorced, but this week everything became official; documents were signed and Andy actually had to be the legal witness to a few things. They’re doing the best that they can under the circumstances, but there are children involved and it’s undoubtedly hard on them.
As Andy and I hugged each other and chatted, my initial reaction was to say, “Don’t worry, that won’t ever happen to us.” As soon as those words escaped my lips, I realized just how foolish they were. We know so many people, and I’m sure you do too, who thought that it would never happen to them. And it did. So I think the worst thing that we can do is to bury our heads in the sand and say, “Oh, that will never be me.”
I doubt that something like that would come up quickly; it’s probably a slow progression. It’s very easy to get busy with your own life, your job, and your hobbies. If you happen to have children, you know how crazy that gets and sometimes just keeping up with them, their activities, and their needs takes every ounce of energy that you have. You don’t always have a lot left to give your partner. At the end of the day, it’s easy to just rest in the knowledge that he or she will always be there and not give that relationship the care and attention that you give other relationships. We were watching a TV show last night and there was a couple that was talking about how so many years had gone by and they were worried that there weren’t any “firsts” left in their relationship; they were struggling to find newness.
So in light of the length of time that Andy and I have been together, the place that our friends find themselves, and a TV show that caused us to reflect, we have made a couple of specific choices this week in an attempt to not take each other for granted. We aren’t roommates; we are first and foremost husband and wife. Without that foundation, we wouldn’t have the children, the home, or the lives that we enjoy right now. So we will work daily to preserve and treasure that. If you are married, whether it’s been for one week or fifty years, I would encourage you to examine your relationship and do the same. Your choices, your action items, won’t be the same as ours, nor should they be. But please, do what it takes to fight for your relationship. Don’t become complacent. Don’t become a habit. Don’t give the enemy a foothold or a chance to come between what the Lord has so richly blessed you with.