By now I am sure most of you married a few years or more have realized marriage is not a magical fairytale we read about or see on the big screen the reality is it's far from a fairytale. The truth is marriage is not exciting most days and it can become cumbersome for many.
I am often asked how I have been married for 24 years and somewhat happy well I am gonna be honest a lot of the times we have not been happy but I don't believe marriage was created solely to be happy and thank God because happiness comes and goes and we can't have our marriages coming and going no one would ever stay married.
Now let me share there are of coarse many times of excitement over the years we have exciting times from time to time and do exciting things and take exciting adventures from time to time but most of marriage is mundane and repetitive.
There are to-do lists and and daily tasks to be done over and over again, then the taking care of 8 kids, and taking care of myself, and then trying to nurture all of the relationships (husband, kids, family, others) it's a lot and most days not filled with excitement and happiness. Oh and not to mention throwing in the stress and chaos of this dark world we live in today.
On my social media platforms (as well as ALL others you follow) you mostly are shown the exciting happy parts like date nights and trips and fun time with families and that stuff is great if you also realize these couples ALL have off days not so fun days ugly days and boring days as well.
We have found ways to keep our marriage alive and exciting but friends it TAKES WORK and most don't want to hear this, but it's TRUTH good marriages are hard marriages and must be cared for daily, weekly, monthly. Friend's we can't just go on monthly dates and think that is enough it's not and it will be damaging in the long run of your marriage trust me we know from experience. I have heard all the excuses too (I myself made many) like well money and kids and why should I do it He needs to make all the effort not me. I am here to say no no and no .
One money is a cop out and none of us ever seem to have enough if your marriage is important to you THEN DO IT you can go for a drive park and enjoy scenery or go for a walk in your neighborhood and talk you can go to coffee like you do with gal pals or just get dessert and when money allows then dinners and stay cations and more. Friends most have lost all excitement in marriage because we stop pursuing the other. Friends start before your mate we must start somewhere and can't wait for other one to make a move.
Remember friends marriage is to be continually watered and cared for and we must remember that marriage is hard and that's normal we are two imperfect people, both with messy pasts, different strengths and weaknesses, on our own journeys with God and then each other. Life is messy and hard and some days I am in tears and he is beside himself but at the end of the day we love each other and we both know the importance of putting in the work.
Here are some of our top things to keep marriage HEALTHY, HAPPY and EXCITING :
1. God this is the most important of all He must be kept at the center of it all.
2. Regular date nights sometimes multiple a week (weekly is priority)
3. Therapy/ Counseling (a must to heal yourself then our marriages)
4. Communication and Boundaries (having healthy communication is super important and took us 24 years to learn this. Second, healthy boundaries is of utmost importance that looks different for every couple.
5. Last don't wait for the other to do for you we are called to serve love and respect without expectation our duty is unto the Lord not man and not for what we can get from it. REMEMBER J O Y is Jesus others then ourself ....
As we go into the New Year let this be a new beginning in your marriage !!