Faith, Faith, Flour, & Sawdust

Lessons Learned

In June, the husband and I celebrated 21 years of marriage. This past weekend we got his and hers ring tattoos. Marriage is not for the faint of heart. Marriage is tough and requires daily work. Things that were cute are now annoying. Problems do not just go away. Having children does not make things better. Marriage is a lifetime commitment.

It has taken me almost 15 years to get the hang of things in my marriage. I always knew I wanted to be a wife and mother. It is what I wanted to be when I grew up. I goofed up and had a child before the marriage. I was lucky to find a man who loved my son.

When you get married you usually have an adjustment period where you learn to become a couple before children. We got married and it was an instant family. There was 3 not just him and me. Not only did I have a kid now, but I have a husband. There was a lot of adjustments to go through. By adjustments I do mean yelling, tears, and harsh words exchanged.

Lots of changes happaned that first year. We moved across the state, and had job changes, Shortly after our 1 year Anniversary we 3 became 4. This did not solve our problems. It might have masked them for a bit but it by no means solved them. Year 2 was just as exciting as we moved into our forever home. Year 4 we lost a pregnancy and 9/11 happened. Year 5 we lost another pregnancy. Year 6 we were pregnant again and had our last child.

The years rolled by and we still had our problems. Sometime in our teen years of marriage I started looking at our fights and realized it was not the husband’s fault. When I started to look closer I realized it was me. I was trying to change and “fix” my husband so he would fit in the box of my ideal perfect husband. I was trying to change and fix someone who did not understand my expectations. It wasn’t his fault, he can not read my mind. I expected him to read my mind and know my feelings and adjust to me. I expected a perfect husband from an imperfect human.

Year 15 of marriage we lost his mother very unexpectedly and fast. I was her hospice caregiver. We had never spent more then a few hours in the same room and now I was taking care of her. This was hard and it changed me. She came to Jesus before her death and I was grateful to spend her last days together. After this experience I asked myself what was making me upset in my marriage and would it matter in 6 months, 1 year, 5 years or at all? This is how I started changing my experiences and expectations in my marriage.

I do not loose my crap too much anymore in life. I still loose it but it is more controlled and focused. I do not get mad at everyone in the room when it is directed at one person. I have also to think before I speak and make sure I give grace. This is not effortless and without some restraint but I am working on me. In the process my husband has noticed the change and has made an effort to change himself so we both work on our relationship. This is a two way street, I do not do all the giving or recieving. We work together and our relationship is getting better and better all the time. We are by no means perfect but we are a perfect fit together.

Have a blessed day, live the ones you are with, and remember we are not guaranteed tomorrow but we are guaranteed coffee today

Shannon