Love and Marriage: What is it Worth These Days?

I was given a story to read by a friend today, and it speaks so much more beyond the story itself. We live in a time where love and marriage aren't as high on the priority list as they should be. Of course everyone is experiencing love at different levels at different times in their life. But this story is of love and marriage. Once one has established they're true partner in life, gone through love from its baby stages of adoration, cuddling, flirtatious playfulness, etc. to finishing each others sentences, tough times, accepting each others differences, appreciating simple moments together, raising kids, growing old together and so on.

I think we all have either been at this point in our relationships (maybe not so specifically) or know someone who has, or is. What do you do when love becomes a challenge sometimes, when life gets a hold of you for the worst and you find that marriage isn't as great as you thought it would be? What decisions would you make? When do you just give up? How do learn to love again? By all means, I do not have these answers. Every relationship is so different, so complex dependent upon the individuals and their actions. BUT, I do have a thought worth sharing. In no way am I experienced in any kind of relationship counseling, but through my experiences and ultimate love, peace, fulfillment, gratefulness, and sense of pride my marriage has given me, I feel it wouldn't hurt to put it out there. First, here's the beautiful story that is definitely a must read for anyone in love or marriage:

Marriage


When I got home that night as my wife served dinner, I held her hand and said, I've got something to tell you. She sat down and ate quietly. Again I observed the hurt in her eyes.

Suddenly I didn't know how to open my mouth. But I had to let her know what I was thinking. I want a divorce. I raised the topic calmly.

She didn't seem to be annoyed by my words, instead she asked me softly, why?

I avoided her question. This made her angry. She threw away the chopsticks and shouted at me, you are not a man! That night, we didn't talk to each other. She was weeping. I knew she wanted to find out what had happened to our marriage. But I could hardly give her a satisfactory answer; she had lost my heart to Jane. I didn't love her anymore. I just pitied her!

With a deep sense of guilt, I drafted a divorce agreement which stated that she could own our house, our car, and 30% stake of my company.

She glanced at it and then tore it into pieces. The woman who had spent ten years of her life with me had become a stranger. I felt sorry for her wasted time, resources and energy but I could not take back what I had said for I loved Jane so dearly. Finally she cried loudly in front of me, which was what I had expected to see. To me her cry was actually a kind of release. The idea of divorce which had obsessed me for several weeks seemed to be firmer and clearer now.

The next day, I came back home very late and found her writing something at the table. I didn't have supper but went straight to sleep and fell asleep very fast because I was tired after an eventful day with Jane.

When I woke up, she was still there at the table writing. I just did not care so I turned over and was asleep again.

In the morning she presented her divorce conditions: she didn't want anything from me, but needed a month's notice before the divorce. She requested that in that one month we both struggle to live as normal a life as possible. Her reasons were simple: our son had his exams in a month's time and she didn't want to disrupt him with our broken marriage.

This was agreeable to me. But she had something more, she asked me to recall how I had carried her into out bridal room on our wedding day.

She requested that every day for the month's duration I carry her out of our bedroom to the front door ever morning. I thought she was going crazy. Just to make our last days together bearable I accepted her odd request.

I told Jane about my wife's divorce conditions. . She laughed loudly and thought it was absurd. No matter what tricks she applies, she has to face the divorce, she said scornfully.

My wife and I hadn't had any body contact since my divorce intention was explicitly expressed. So when I carried her out on the first day, we both appeared clumsy. Our son clapped behind us, daddy is holding mommy in his arms. His words brought me a sense of pain. From the bedroom to the sitting room, then to the door, I walked over ten meters with her in my arms. She closed her eyes and said softly; don't tell our son about the divorce. I nodded, feeling somewhat upset. I put her down outside
the door. She went to wait for the bus to work. I drove alone to the office.

On the second day, both of us acted much more easily. She leaned on my chest. I could smell the fragrance of her blouse. I realized that I hadn't looked at this woman carefully for a long time. I realized she was not young any more. There were fine wrinkles on her face, her hair was graying! Our marriage had taken its toll on her. For a minute I wondered what I had done to her.

On the fourth day, when I lifted her up, I felt a sense of intimacy returning. This was the woman who had given ten years of her life to me.

On the fifth and sixth day, I realized that our sense of intimacy was growing again. I didn't tell Jane about this. It became easier to carry her as the month slipped by. Perhaps the everyday workout made me stronger.

She was choosing what to wear one morning. She tried on quite a few dresses but could not find a suitable one. Then she sighed, all my dresses have grown bigger. I suddenly realized that she had grown so thin, that was the reason why I could carry her more easily.

Suddenly it hit me... she had buried so much pain and bitterness in her heart. Subconsciously I reached out and touched her head.

Our son came in at the moment and said, Dad, it's time to carry mom out. To him, seeing his father carrying his mother out had become an essential part of his life. My wife gestured to our son to come closer and hugged him tightly. I turned my face away because I was afraid I might change my mind at this last minute. I then held her in my arms, walking from the bedroom, through the sitting room, to the hallway. Her hand surrounded my neck softly and naturally. I held her body tightly; it was just like our wedding day.

But her much lighter weight made me sad. On the last day, when I held her in my arms I could hardly move a step. Our son had gone to school. I held her tightly and said, I hadn't noticed that our life lacked intimacy.

I drove to office.... jumped out of the car swiftly without locking the door. I was afraid any delay would make me change my mind...I walked upstairs. Jane opened the door and I said to her, Sorry, Jane, I do not want the divorce anymore.

She looked at me, astonished, and then touched my forehead. Do you have a fever? She said. I moved her hand off my head. Sorry, Jane, I said, I won't divorce. My marriage life was boring probably because she and I didn't value the details of our lives, not because we didn't love each other anymore. Now I realize that since I carried her into my home on our wedding day I am supposed to hold her until death do us apart.

Jane seemed to suddenly wake up. She gave me a loud slap and then slammed the door and burst into tears. I walked downstairs and drove away.

At the floral shop on the way, I ordered a bouquet of flowers for my wife. The salesgirl asked me what to write on the card. I smiled and wrote, I'll carry you out every morning until death do us apart.

That evening I arrived home, flowers in my hands, a smile on my face, I run up stairs, only to find my wife in the bed - dead.
My wife had been fighting CANCER for months and I was so busy with Jane to even notice. She knew that she would die soon and she wanted to save me from the whatever negative reaction from our son, in case we push thru with the divorce.-- At least, in the eyes of our son--- I'm a loving husband....

The small details of your lives are what really matter in a relationship. It is not the mansion, the car, property, the money in the bank. These create an environment conducive for happiness but cannot give happiness in themselves. So find time to be your spouse's friend and do those little things for each other that build intimacy. Do have a real happy marriage!

Many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.

My theory is this. Take the time to really learn and understand who you are and what makes you happy, what your true values mean to you. Establish what you know you need to be happy in a relationship. I know what you're saying already; okay, like you're really going to find THE perfect person? No, you probably won't.  But if you set your standards and never settle for anything less, you may not end up with the perfect person, but you increase your chances of that individual meeting most of your needs in respect towards values. Given that you will obviously need to know what's worth compromising for you when that time comes. Once you choose someone in marriage, you have to never be off guard in love.

 I've heard the saying marriage is 50/50. I completely disagree. In order to give your marriage any worthy chance to survive, it has to be 110 percent given by each person. This should be done consistently at all times.  Mind you, I've had a failed marriage in the past at a very young age. In all honesty it was never really born out of true love in the first place and for all the wrong reasons. That being said, my marriage now was founded exactly how I previously described.

What kind of marriage do I have? To say the least, I am truly blessed with my husband. From day one he's shown me the utmost respect in every manner through any situation. There's never a day that goes by that he doesn't fail to show me in one way or another how much he adores and appreciates me. Our communication has always been priority. Honesty has never been an issue. We met at points in our lives where we were both headstrong about who we were and what we wanted, and telling it like it is, is never a problem. We each find the time to pay attention to details, compliment each other, and positively influence each other, spending the time needed together in order for us to be focused on our goals. We just flow so effortlessly through each and every day now, that we've learned to simplify our lives in order to truly enjoy and appreciate what we have to offer each other as well as continue to inspire and encourage each other to become even more than what we are.

Really, I could probably write a book on my marriage and how it all began (if you only knew our whole story). Things weren't always so great, but through our love we always stayed strong in appreciating one another. I believe the key to a successful marriage has to start with yourself. Too quickly people fall into the whole "what about me" attitude. If you keep track of yourself, your thoughts, your actions, and your motives, then you become a more valueable partner towards success in love. The both of you mentally, physically, and emotionally working together each and everyday takes effort on each end. Being supportive of one another, remembering why you fell in love with this person in the first place, appreciating the smallest gestures, making the smallest gestures, it's a constant awareness of all things happening in the relationship. There's never a point where you look at each other and say " We're good, we have a great marriage, there's nothing to worry about." It's about everyday being individual of itself. Most importantly be in control. Like I said it all starts within you. Be concious of your thoughts, your intentions because ultimately that is what you will follow. Don't ever give in to settling for less and whatever is easier. If you truly love someone giving up is not an option, giving your all is the only one.

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Comments 41 comments

mikielikie profile image

mikielikie 6 years ago from Texas

Hey lady. I think that some people think of marriage as just a little paper that you sign. Like its something that we have to do to be normal. But I think that marriage is the simple part. Its the "I love you" part thats hard. Its so hard not to say it every second that you're with that special someone. Great hub!


Granny's House profile image

Granny's House 6 years ago from Older and Hopefully Wiser Time

Wow, great story. My husband and I have been married for 36 years. We are more in love today then ever.


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 6 years ago from California Author

Hey mikie, I think you're right. The respect factor in marriages seems to be lacking in some, and it appears to be easier and easier to just give up and call it quits. Respectfully, everyone has their own specific situation going on, but I do think there are some that jump into marriage because it's "the next step". It's so important to express in every way possible how much you love and appreciate them at all times. If not, it's easy to get comfortable and take for granted the simple things. Thanks for reading my thoughts!


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 6 years ago from California Author

Hi Granny's House, I loved the story too. That's so awesome for you and your husband, 36 years. Congratulations! I love hearing of relationships that just get better and better over time. You're truly blessed. =) I appreciate your reading and commenting.


singlmomat52 profile image

singlmomat52 6 years ago

Hi Cheryl, I must say this is a beautiful Hub!!! I agree with you on all counts. 110% is what we need to give in a relationship. It cannot be about me, me, me. I believe you must be considerate of him 110% and he of you 110%. Have each others backs, look out for one another, tell each other everyday that you love each other and make sure it is not just words you are saying, but that you are showing it in everyway and carrying it in your heart. Thank you for sharing!!


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 6 years ago from California Author

Hi singlmomat52, I'm glad that you enjoyed it. You're right, showing each other how much you love one another in everyway is so important. It only plants the seeds for much more to to grow. I appreciate your comment!


kowality profile image

kowality 6 years ago from Everywhere

Wow, I didn't expect that ending - So sad. I have a loyal wife whom I love dearly. We spent twelve years together before we married and this year makes 13. I think I appreciate her more today than I ever could have when we met. Thank you for reminding me of that. Thumbs up!


Cheeky Girl profile image

Cheeky Girl 6 years ago from UK and Nerujenia

Aw, _cheryl_, this was such a moving story about the couple and what you wrote here - it is so moving. I am only 26 and not married, but I envy people who can marry and stay in love and be loyal and together for the rest of their lives. My grand parents managed it very well. (My grandparents raised me as my parents died when I was a nipper).

There are many ways of showing love, in words and actions and deeds. Tributes and flowers, and even little prezzies (they don't have to be much or expensive or anything) - the thought of someone thinking of me and surprising me with anything that acknowledges that love - gosh - it just gets major bonus points for this. Those little affirmations can be so powerful, and can - even on a dreary day or time we are feeling "down" can be heart-warming, and re-assuring.

When a partner take the person or relationship for granted, things can slip a bit, and sometimes a kind of fatigue can creep in. I found that little breaks away in the country, trips out shopping and varying the usual "routine" can help. Some guys get a bee in their bonnet about women who they claim are "needy". Sometimes all the woman wants is for the guy to just listen and be more attentive to what she is saying - not entirely what she needs...

Anyway, you sound like you need a cheering up, if you don't mind my saying that. I hope your day is good, _cheryl_. Take care. Blessings to you.


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 6 years ago from California Author

Thanks for taking the time to read kowality. My husband and I are in the same boat, we've spent quite a number of years together before we actually got married and I believe that makes us appreciate each other so much more. Thank you for the thumbs up!


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 6 years ago from California Author

Hey Cheeky Girl! Very glad you stopped by to read this. How awesome is it that you have such loving grandparents. I'm with you, it says so much about two people who can stay loyal and in love with each other for the rest of their lives. I completely agree too that any little affirmation, no matter how small can be more powerful than we think. Reminds me of a favorite quote "Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around." ~ Leo Buscaglia.... Thanks so much for your thoughts, always a pleasure to hear from you! =)


Medkh9 6 years ago

thanks for the fan mail , i really like it my wife did too.your hubs are great . am following you now , enjoy your time on your hubs


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 6 years ago from California Author

Thanks Medkh9 =)


TattoGuy 6 years ago

I have been seperated 2 years now and am slowly finding myself as you suggested in your hub. I miss at times a person to share the little things with but I am happy you have found love, tis rare these days, who knows one day I may just find it. you lil stunner ; ) x


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 6 years ago from California Author

Hi TG, sometimes we have to go through unsuccessful relationships in order to really learn what truly makes us happy. It's hard I'm sure at times, but hang in there. Your such a wonderful guy who's full of interesting things in mind as well as thoughtful and encouraging...and I've only learned this of you from knowing you here on HP! I'm sure love is on track to find you. =)


@MagicBoy profile image

@MagicBoy 6 years ago from Qatar

Hi Cheryl, that was a heart touching story which I really appreciated reading about relationships..I was sorry to learn about your bad experiences, but am very glad that you have a great relationship now which I pray should last forever..I am not married yet, although I have taken an note of all the vital information from your article which would come handy for me to refer to in the future..I am hoping to have a lifelong relationship with someone to whom I can give everything I have…

Reading your articles makes me realize that I have started to know you more and more..feels good.. Sending much love your way...


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 6 years ago from California Author

@MagicBoy, I'm very glad to hear you valued my thoughts on love and marriage. It's great to know that through these hubs you're able to make a connection, that's ultimately my goal in sharing my thoughts with anyone willing to read them. I really appreciate you sharing your thoughts as well, thank you. Sending love back your way! =)


fundamentallife profile image

fundamentallife 6 years ago

A beautiful, albeit sad story. I can totally relate to your thoughts. Thanks for an awesome hub.

AJ..


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 6 years ago from California Author

Thanks AJ, I appreciate you reading on my thoughts. It's always nice to know when someone can relate.


tom hellert profile image

tom hellert 6 years ago from home

Ch,

I'll tell you this read my 3 hub series on what happened wen i died- *Spoiler alert* I Came back- but was in a coma- *spoiler #2* my wife was the pnly one I responded to after being in a coma for a week. So to me it is worth my life they thought I was brain dead but she got mre out that is what it means to me...

TH


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 6 years ago from California Author

That is an awesome story TH. It's so amazing the connection that is formed between two people who truly love!


tom hellert profile image

tom hellert 6 years ago from home

Ch,

what may be more amazing ishow we met-

I met her at a job interview!!!! She was interviewing ME...

she worked at a temp agency-i was trying for a mall interviewer job- I got a job the day before but I figured I would go to the next interview anyway- well 2 hours later - I was engaged.. just kidding- *hehe* I left and she called back about another job and- I asked her out we went out and 1.5 yrs later married- I should put the whole story in a hub- there is alot more to it....\hhhmmm

TH


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 6 years ago from California Author

Wow TH, crazy story! I love hearing of how people meet their soul mates. =) Believe it or not, I met my husband at a gas station. You really never know who you'll run into at any given time lol! Of course there's so much more to our story as well....I'll be lookin out for your "how you met your wife" hub. ;)


tom hellert profile image

tom hellert 6 years ago from home

Fine Cheryl ya big bully LOL- I'll write it soon..

TH


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 6 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space

This is wonderful. I was dumbstruck by the parable you told here as well, about the couple getting divorced. Life is too short for people to be angry and hating each other.


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 6 years ago from California Author

Hi Astra Nomik! So true, life is too short to take some of the simplest things for granted. I'm glad you enjoyed my hub. =)


ecoggins profile image

ecoggins 5 years ago from Corona, California

Very moving story. Should be made into a movie. Have a blessed holiday.


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 5 years ago from California Author

Thanks ecoggins, it's a great story of love and it's possibilites isn't it? I'm glad you took the time to read it. =)


oneinajillian profile image

oneinajillian 5 years ago from So.Cali

very useful advice. thank u for sharing!


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 5 years ago from California Author

Glad you took the time to read it jill! Thanks ;)


donna orallo profile image

donna orallo 5 years ago

I love your hub. I completely agree with you that in order to give your marriage any worthy chance to survive, it has to be 110 percent given by each person and not by one alone. I also have a failed marriage. But I'm happy right now not with anybody else but with my son.


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 5 years ago from California Author

Hi donna, thanks for your comment. Yeah, 110% really should be applied to everything we do. But most especially in our relationships with those we value most. :)


carolinemd21 profile image

carolinemd21 4 years ago from Close to Heaven

Hi Cheryl that was such a moving and heartfelt story. I loved it. I'm glad you included it. I haven't been married yet, but would love to soon. I have a high valued outlook on relationships and what you and your husband have is wonderful. thank you for sharing. I hope I have something like that one day.


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 4 years ago from California Author

Thank you carolinemd21. Here's a quote I've always loved by Steve Jobs, and I truly believe it 100%!

. “I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.

If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle.”


carolinemd21 profile image

carolinemd21 4 years ago from Close to Heaven

Thank you Cheryl for the great advice. Happy New Year to you!


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 4 years ago from California Author

Much love and God bless for you in 2012 carolinemd21 :) Happy New Year!!!!!!


Donald1960 profile image

Donald1960 4 years ago from United States

Hi Cheryl, your theory is right. Every couple should take time to see if they are compatible before marriage. I know that is little insensitive, but this way you can avoid great marriage troubles after.


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 4 years ago from California Author

Thanks Donald1960, there's nothing wrong with taking the time to be more than sure that a person is right for you. Everyone is so different, not everyone is on the same page about many aspects of a relationship, but taking that time, in the end worth it. :)


DFiduccia profile image

DFiduccia 4 years ago from Las Vegas

Hello Cheryl,

This hub on love and marriage was very moving. My dad passed away in April 2010 at the age of ninety-one. My mom, now ninety- two, lives with my sister after seventy-two years of marriage with our father.


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 4 years ago from California Author

Thanks DFiduccia, that's amazing that your parents were able to live for so many years together. Truly a blessing. 72 years of marriage... so much knowledge and wisdom from the both of them I'm sure. Thanks for sharing that, it's very inspiring.


mariesthorayanlaz profile image

mariesthorayanlaz 4 years ago from India

HI Cheryl, I love your story. I think you are a person who give prime importance to the family relationships.What a wonderful wife she is! A great loss for the husband.I am a wife for 20 years and have 2 children.Your hub is like an advice for mr. Thank you.


_cheryl_ profile image

_cheryl_ 4 years ago from California Author

Hi mariesthorayaniaz, thank you for your comment. My family relationship is very very important to me, you're right. It's not always easy and great, but if you are with the one that you truly love it's worth a fight to keep what you started in the first place. A very good friend gave me some great advice; Anything worth having is worth fighting for.

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