A couple of weeks ago, I just freaked out in a major way about my marriage, and I did write about it. But since that time, I’ve dealt with random frustrations within my myself, about my husband, my daughter is………..a TODDLER…..Lord, have mercy. It’s been a lot going on for me personally. But marriage-wise, I don’t know what happened. I started feeling like we were just slipping…like we should be further along. I was frustrated at the things that my husband always did (like always) because I thought he should have changed by now. Considering other marriages that I saw, I just felt like we were really behind, and it was really bumming me out.
I’m not sure where I heard this, but a man, commenting on his marriage, said that his wife had been married to 8 different men. But he said that all of those men were him. I thought that was a really crazy statement, but I could get at the point he was making. He knew marriage had changed him many times over the course of his marriage (he’d been married over 15 years I believe), and he was grateful to God that his wife bore with him through all of those changes, just as he bore with her through all of hers.
Well, at some point after being bummed out about my marriage for a while, that little statement and story came back to me. And in the midst of being frustrated, I just took a step back and tried to objectively examine the situation. Reality is: my husband and I have only been married a little more than 2 years. When we got married, we had about one month of a “honeymoon period” (where we dealt with other adjustments) before I found out I was pregnant. Since then, we’ve been dealing with a lot of major life changes. We’ve moved 6 times, lived in 3 different states, finished a Ph.D., and dealt with the dynamics of starting new jobs in a completely different environment. All the while, we’ve been financially supporting family members, going through first-time parenting challenges, and trying to pay off our debts. Truth be told, we pretty much hit the ground running, and we haven’t had a lot of time to just sit, reflect, think about ourselves, think about our dreams, or anything like that. We threw our “plan” out the window once the pregnancy started, and we’ve just been dealing with life as it’s hit us ever since…..ever since that first month of marriage.
Considering these things, I wondered why I would compare our marriage to the marriages of people who’ve been married for over 10 and 20 years. Why and the world would I do that? Even think of doing that? And I guess it’s because we’ve been through so much in such a short period of time….I don’t know. It’s felt like we’ve been married for years and years some days. But reality is, we haven’t. It’s been a lot of stuff, but it really hasn’t been that long.
So, after my reality check, I talked to my husband, and apologized for the freak out and the random emotionally-charged conversations I put him through. I realized that although we’re dealing with a lot, we still have many many more years to go, God-willing, and we have plenty of years to go through more challenges and more changes and grow together and learn about each other and so on. Honestly, that growing and learning and changing is a life-time process. And I’m glad I realized that and the importance of always taking the mindset of a need to learn more and more. Even when I’m 50, I don’t want to consider my marriage and think that I’ve learned all I need to learn, but I still want to learn, even then. I still want to grow and change for the better….be conformed to the image of Christ more and more. And as long as I am with my husband, we’re going to be doing this together. And it’s foolish of me to expect him, or even myself, to be perfect, when we have yet to be perfected by the Lord. So, hey, I’ve calmed down, and I’m taking this journey in stride, and I pray that you do the same.