Remember the butterflies

I remember the butterflies. The excitement over experiencing something new with my husband. The first time holding hands, a kiss, the agony over waiting until our wedding night. I remember how a day without seeing them felt like it would never end and how all I wanted was to be with him all the time. Dreaming constantly of our wedding day and perfect marriage. I remember the overwhelming conversation of whether or not we had feelings for each other. Or the rush of happiness knowing we were going to see each other. I can tell you the EXACT moment I realized I was in love with him and wanted to spend the rest of my life with him.

Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate. Mark 10:9

We went shopping to cook stuff for dinner together, made a lovely crab legs dinner, sat together and just had a delightful conversation and it just seemed so simple…so easy…so right. Did I dare tell him I felt this way? Absolutely not…see I was a victim of many broken hearts and cheating relationships. I wasn’t going to give him that power. Even though he said he loved me first, I told him there was no possible way he could know that and we shouldn’t say that. He was great and apologized and didn’t say it anymore. Until one day, it was after work and he wanted to see me even if it was just a few minutes. He noticed my tires on my car were flat and he filled them. As we said goodbye at QT, he kissed me on the cheek and said I love you. Then just walked away and got in the car and went home. I realized at that exact moment, because of how natural it felt, how that moment was so small but so genuine, that I loved him, too. He remembered that I made such a big deal that the poor guy even texted me an apology for saying I love you to me. Which just makes me laugh. This guy will apologize for anything miniscule, but if he is wrong, won’t even mutter an I’m sorry.

 

It’s so important to remember how it all started. Because when the times get tough, you have to remember how you got there. Remind yourself that it isn’t always an easy thing and that there are good times. One this I’ve learned is marriage is not a piece of cake. It’s hard! When you’re engaged, all you can think about is the wedding, spending every day together and happiness! You don’t think of how to handle arguing, raising kids, money, any of that. It doesn’t seem important. Arguing/disagreements are inevitable. We argued only twice before getting married. Each topic was a heavy topic, and were definitely needing to be addressed. So when we got married, it was like my husband’s opinionated argumentative switch went off. That first year was rough. There were seriously days where I felt like we couldn’t do it. We moved too quickly. It was hard. We prayed together constantly, still do. That’s one of our strongest attributes in our marriage is praying together. We both knew divorce was never an answer. I came from a family of divorce and it tore all of us up, and I never wanted that. We both know what the Bible says about divorce, so when the going got tough, I think knowing that just “quitting” wasn’t a choice…it made arguing harder. Because the argument had to always get resolved. There was no walking away from it, there was no abandoning each other, there were no threats to be made, you just had to fix it. I know that sounds so silly, but I think one reason why arguing is never much of a big deal in dating is because the relationship can end whenever. An argument could be the deciding factor for both of ya’ll to realize you can’t see eye to eye and it’s over. Marriage, you can’t do that. You have to compromise. That was the hardest part was neither of us WANTED to compromise. Both of us wanted to be right, have the final word, and wanted the other to say their sorry. Compromise is hard.

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That’s the funny thing, no one warns you about how to argue/not to argue in marriage. You hear about love each other, make memories, never stop the romance, have fun, pray together….but how to deal with someone who’s opinion seems to always be at war against yours? Sheesh, that’s hard. I can’t even tell you how many times in that first year I was reminded of “wives, submit yourselves to your husbands.” And I would always throw back with, “husbands love your wife more than thyself”. We both wanted to use scripture to help win our argument. It’s so funny to look back and how childish we were.

(Ephesians 5:22-33)

But how do you learn to love one more than yourself? How do you learn to submit without argument? It’s hard. Am I going to sit here and act like my husband and I do this daily, no. But we definitely try more than we did. When we first started, we demanded to be respected and loved, more than we gave respect and love. I remember, we went to a one year check up with our pastor who performed our premarital counseling, and he listened to us go on about what we have learned in our first year. He just chuckled at our discoveries and complaints. And then proceeded to ask if we ever tried responding to an argument that’s about to start in less than five words? I told him it was impossible. My husband agreed and said we couldn’t get our point across if we did that. Then our pastor said, “most arguments happen because of a response to what someone says, not because of what was originally said. If you choose to respond in less than five words, you could prevent an unnecessary argument from even happening.” We both paused. How could two stubborn people, who both wanted to be right, do such a simple thing? We both just decided it didn’t apply to us. Haha! He then said, “if what you are arguing about is not going to change your lives, or directly affect your relationships, then it’s a waste of your time, and does not bring glory to God.” He’s right….we had, and sometimes still do, wasted so much time, gotten so mad, on something so insignificant.

 

We’ve gotten a lot better six years later. We’re still a work in progress. But one thing we are confident in, is we will never give on each other. When it gets tough, we money is tight, you are more irritable than peaceful, we always remember the beginning. How we got there. No matter how mad I get, I could never think of desiring a life without my husband. He is my best friend, my partner, my other half, and the best parent for my children. Even if at the moment he may not like me because we are arguing and we are mad…..he still loves me. We could hug mid argument and be over it. Sometimes, if we are arguing over something, and maybe he spills a drink or something happens, we just stop and laugh and then it’s just over. There is no one else in this world I could do that with. He has seen me at my absolute worst and loved me through it. Plus, there is no other way I could score anyone as good looking as this man. He is absolutely dreamy gorgeous. That smirk he makes, could still make me flutter. The rings on my finger, still make me smile cause they are so beautiful. We still say “I love you” to each other at least three times a day. There is never a day that we don’t hug, kiss, or hold hands. We get excited to do things together, eat lunch together, be with the kids together, even though we are with each other every day. We still desire each other. We still can crack each other up, and no matter how long it’s been, I still have so much fun tickling him because he is the most ticklish man on the planet. There is never a thought of quitting, no matter how mad we get, because we still keep the good times alive. We don’t forget how we started, because we remind each other daily of why we are still in love with each other. I pray for him, he prays for me, and most importantly, every day we pray together! That’s what makes our relationship work.

 

Are we perfect? Absolutely not, but we know this is it. We are each for the other. And I love that.

 

Nathan,

 

Thank you for loving me unconditionally. Your love me is the closest thing to Christ’s love for us that I know. You love me past my mistakes, my wrong doings, and my faults. Even when I’m mad, you still want me. It’s breath taking. Every day, I thank the Lord that he believed I was even worth having your love. He has blessed me so much with placing you in my life at my darkest time, and then giving us three amazing children. I also thank God that he made you as handsome as you are with that wrinkle in your forehead, the dimples on your cheeks, your radical blue eyes, and that smirk that can make my heart melt. I know we will never be perfect, and I also know without a doubt we will have plenty more arguments, but I also know that we will always love each other through any fiery dart and trial thrown our way. I appreciate everything you do for me and our family. I can’t promise that I will be the Proverbial wife that we read about, but I do promise that I will try. I will spend the rest of my life, loving you the way you have loved me. I cannot wait to see what else is in store for us. I’m so glad I have you as my life partner for the remaining journey of our lives. Thank you for never giving up on me, and for no matter how many times I complain, groan, or sigh, for finding me beautiful. I love you always…

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This seems so long…jumping headfirst into marriage. I still would do it all over again! 🙂

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