Sep 20, 2010

The UnRomantic Anniversary Post

Today, we celebrate our 7th anniversary!

It's a far cry from the 50 years my in laws have celebrated or the 20+ both my parents celebrated (each in their second marriages) but yet I see ours worth many times more than our "mere" 7 years together in wisdom. We've weathered some pretty huge storms.
We didn't really start on a strong footing. Although he had been separated some time, he was not officially divorced when we began dating. After four months he moved in with me, and within 3 more months we found out we were expecting a baby. Thankfully, the divorce was finalized yet that summer and we were engaged before Timmy was born. However, because I still wanted a traditional wedding we set a date the September of the following year. Having a newborn and planning a wedding was a feat in itself, but before I was even able to purchase a wedding dress I would learn that despite being on the pill, I would need a wedding dress that would fit my 6 month pregnant tummy.
To say that we hadn't exactly followed a biblical family plan, would be a bit of an understatement. Yet, we DID both have a strong faith. When we took those vows, we intended them to be forever. But I never could have imagined how hard life could get. We endured a LOT in those first few years and a point came when I thought I was done. I packed up the kids and spent Christmas away from my husband because I didn't think I could continue living life the way things had gone. But I think fear more than anything convinced me to go back. Almost a whole year went by before I really felt like we were stuck where we'd been, with everyone being miserable, no trust at all left between us and no love at all. The following Thanksgiving I filed for a divorce. I hadn't wanted it to be that way, I come from a family with an unusually long history of divorce and I wanted things to be different, I wanted to break that cycle. But the weight of going on everyday as we had been, had become too much. I felt resolved in my decision and there were very few, if any, people who were disagreeing with me. But husband, had been snapped awake, this was not what he wanted and after taking a few days to absorb it, it began to try to convince me to reconsider. But my mind was made up, I felt we'd tried long enough with no change. So unknown to me, he began to pray. And very slowly, it began to change things. I'm sure it was to the complete dismay of some of my family, but my heart began to change. I opened up to giving us a chance if he was willing to work at it. It was not a quick change, but a long slow road to healing. Things certainly weren't all sunshine and roses, as they never will be. But the wounds that had been there, began to heal and the trust began to return ever so slowly. I won't claim that it's completely back even almost 4 years later, but we have healed enough to be able to say we've made it through the storm.
Our marriage is far from perfect, we argue and we criticize each other. There are days, I don't like him at all, but I still love him. We have been in the lowest of lows but slowly and surely, and not without the help of our faith, we have crawled out of that pit. Sure we still hit an occasional pothole, but if we simply learn to accept that it is all part of doing life together in marriage, we can handle any journey. We hope, and intend, to make a long journey down this bumpy road together and hopefully we will get to enjoy all the scenic stops along the way and not get to discouraged by the detours.

I have heard all too many times from people that a marriage is simply too far gone to save, and while I do want to note that there are somethings that are NOT acceptable in a marriage and no person should have to endure, but short of that I do NOT believe it is EVER to late as long as there is a willingness to want to make it work. The giddiness of new love will fade, and there will be days when we really feel like we don't like our spouses at all. But as a parent I also have days that I don't like my child all too much. Or I don't like the way they are acting really but it doesn't meant I don't LOVE them or that I will disown them.

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