Yesterday Jay and I celebrated 23 years of marriage. WOW! Jay said it felt like only 10 minutes……under water. Ha. Ha. Over dinner we talked about what an adventure the last 23 years have been. We have been through lows and highs – we both agreed that we have had more highs than lows. If you know my husband, you know that we have had A LOT of laughter and crazy moments. We have been fortunate to have some great mentors who have helped us on our journey.
If we were starting our marriage journey today, here are some things we would tell ourselves:
- The differences you see in each other are good. Make sure you focus on making them work for your marriage versus against it.
- Hang with people who enjoy being married. Believe it or not there are a bunch of them out there.
- Laughter and play really do matter in your relationship.
- Faith matters. Being able to pray with and for my husband has been huge. It has softened my hardened heart on more than one occasion and it has opened my eyes to Jay’s heart. Priceless.
- Avoid being critical about the little things – cereal boxes left on the counter, stacks of stuff, toilet seat left up, empty toilet paper rolls, cabinet doors left open, gas tank left on empty, etc. In the big scheme of things these pesky little things really don’t matter, but if you focus on them you can make mountains out of molehills.
- Being honest and trustworthy are HUGE.
- Guard your heart. There are a lot of people out there who don’t care about your marriage or the condition of your heart. Stay away from these people, especially when you are going through rough times. They are not friends of your marriage and will often mislead you.
- When you don’t have that “lovin’ feeling” for your spouse, remember the commitment you made and keep putting one foot in front of the other. We all go through rough waters. Sometimes the waters are rough for a short period of time and sometimes it is for an extended period of time. Stay the course.
- Take the “D” word out of the equation. Be committed to figuring out how to make it work.
- Don’t try to keep up with the Jones’s.
- Celebrate your anniversary!