Last night we ordered taco pizza and pulled out the photo albums. The old photo albums. Pictures and memories from when we met, when we dated, when he sang a song in a staircase and proposed. Memories from our engagement, our "I do's", our first apartment and our quaint little first house. They feel like a lifetime ago.
It was a lifetime ago, 4 little lifetimes ago. It will be 10 years in August, and maybe for that fact alone I'm left reflecting on the past 10 years, how we've changed, how our family has been knit together, how our marriage has changed.
Can I tell you a secret? Marriage: it's no stroll in the park. But neither is anything worth doing, right?
So we've been thinking on the past and the now. We've remembered how we were "young and in love", as they say. Now, we are older... and still in love. But the glimmer of young love and excitement has dulled a bit in the midst of sometimes not working as a team, family, work, and struggles in parenting. Over time, we had allowed all the "urgent" to make things between us foggy. We had forgotten to really "date" each other.
To be honest, we both came to marriage with varying expectations and very few solid communication skills. The first year and the ninth year have been the most difficult. The first year, well, because we had little communication or conflict resolution skills. The ninth, because over the years we've forgotten to work as a team, to communicate, to treat each other like we were in love.
And the last 8 months. They've been the most difficult. I've questioned what happened, where I went wrong. We hit pretty close to bottom.
We pressed in and pressed forward. More committed to each other, more committed to Christ. The flaws of not communicating and not working as a team were apparent. We see them clearly now and want to fix them. We are remembering what it's like to date each other again, to consider each other first and to treat each other like we love each other.
Our love for each other never stopped...but we stopped acting like it sometimes.
What I'm learning is that whether it's in marriage, or parenting (adoption!), that "feeling" of love isn't always there. Sometimes love needs unearthed and brushed off and polished. That, friends, is hard work. But it is work that is definitely worth the time and effort.
We made a commitment to each other. At the time we were young and
It's redemption, friends. God taking a crumbled mess and bringing truth and life to it. The last few months--they've been better than ever.
Not easy, of course. But intentional.