Matt and I have seen some rough times. We’ve had so many incredible times and made lots of memories. Our life together has been an amazing journey. What I find sad is how many couples that started their journey around the same time as we did, have not made it. We have a framed engagement picture that people signed at the wedding, instead of a guestbook. If you go back and read that, the couples present seems like a casualty lists. I cant help but think of the broken lives and families torn apart by this ugly word called divorce.
But why have all these marriages crumbled? Why is it that we think that the only way to fix hurt, resentment, anger, or disappointment is to tear the union apart? Now, I am not talking about abuse where someone’s safety is in jeopardy. That is different and extreme circumstances. What I am talking about is phrases like “we just grew apart” or “I don’t feel the same way about my spouse as I once did” or “we married young and just want different things in life now.” There are so many more excuses for the failure of a marriage, but it doesn’t make it any more OK.
I think that sometimes we are in a situation that the alternative seems so glamorous. We picture ourselves outside of the marriage and imaging all the freedom that could be found by walking away. We don’t just think the grass is greener on the other side, we think the other side is paradise and free of all the troubles we have in our marriage. There is the illusion of divorce being a cure all to what ails us.
But that illusion is a fairy tale with no happy ending. You don’t fix lives by tearing people apart. Now, I realize that working through tough times is hard. Not giving up is the hard decision because it requires effort to stand up for something versus running for the hills. I think all too often we become so selfishly motivated, that everything becomes all about me. WE want the freedom to see other people. WE want the butterfly feeling of a new relationship. WE…Me…My…I… So, say you decide to follow those selfish feelings. You leave. Then what? You find someone new, fall in love, get married, and then the new wears off and you are right back where you started from.
Do I always have butterflies in my stomach over Matt? Um no. There are times when he frustrates me just like anyone else has. Though now, I can honestly say that those times are few and far between. My husband is my very best friend. He still gives me butterflies in my stomach, and I am absolutely crazy about him. This didn’t come over night. There were times that it may have seemed easier to throw in the towel, and walk away. The selfish part of me may have even considered it at one point. We worked through it, and because of those times of sticking with the rough patches, my kids still have parents that are married and in the same house.
So I encourage you to don’t even open the door of your mind by allowing yourself to even wonder what life would be like without your spouse. We cannot afford to let the seeds of divorce be planted in our mind, for us to water and grow with every fight or hurt feeling. We have to replace those thoughts with thinking about all the great things our spouses do for us. For every fight, there are so many more great memories to remember. For every hurt feeling, there are so many more great ones that you cannot wait to tell your grandchildren about one day. Make the choice to not fall out of love for the few things may do wrong, love them for all incredible things they do for you that make your life so much better and made your dreams come true.