In a marriage, there will likely be many ups and downs. It’s like the ultimate emotional rollercoaster. Here are a few “adventures” my wife and I have experienced over the last 14 years:
Natural disasters, holidays, celebration, buying homes, losing our jobs, bankruptcy, losing our home, struggling to pay bills, pain, happiness, laughter, sickness, hospitalization, surgeries, fear, failed businesse ventures, smiles, travel, successful business ventures, awesome friends, birth of children, love, raising children, dancing ( she’s WAY better. I look like Elaine from Seinfeld), making money, losing money, family hurts, friend hurts, massive support, love from friends, and much more.
Much of the above was experienced even within the first few years of marriage.
We have been very blessed that for the most part when one of us was weak the other was strong and at the rare times that we both were weak, our combined strength was at least enough to hold on while the storm shook the shit out of us.
We have learned, evolved and changed. In many ways we are very different people than when we started.
I have made so many mistakes. So. Many.
I speak my mind. All. Of. The Time. Which can be a double-edged sword because I always say what I am thinking. She may not like what I am thinking, but she never has to wonder, what I am thinking.
We have fought. We have made up. We have held onto things too long and we have also forgiven many things. There were times that I’m sure that I broke her heart and at times I felt that mine was broken too.
But love conquers all right?
After 14 years, something I now know is this:
Marriage is not based – and must not be based – solely on LOVE. There were many times that one or both of us did not feel “loved”. If marriage is made to be about love, then as soon as a person did not feel “love”, they would have the desire to go and find love….. elsewhere if need be. If you make it all about the feelings of love and in-love feelings, you are inviting trouble because there will certainly be times when a person won’t be able to feel love from the other. This may be for a day, or a week, a month or even longer. I’m sure you have experienced this at one time or another, but that’s not what it’s meant to be about.
Marriage is about a soul connection to another person and a commitment to focus on and nurture that connection beyond all else, and in the midst of all else. That bond will persist when love is not so visibly present. That bond will also help facilitate the truest form of love we all want to feel.
This is a choice we continually make daily, not just one time in front of friends and family on the wedding day.
The life you are living with the other person is one of connection, commitment and forgiveness. Sometimes it takes a lot of forgiveness. The feelings of love facilitated making the commitment to each other, not the other way around.
Darren Hardy once said: “Commitment is doing the thing you said you were going to do even after the mood you said it in has left you.”
So take a deep breath, step back and try to remember why you are together. Forgive and commit. Even when you want to pull your hair out or punch them in the face. I promise the feelings of love will be felt again.