True Love: Keeping It Alive And Strong
The Blending of Hearts
The secret to a happy marriage is to always treat your husband as if he were your best friend. Your actions are different when viewed as such. —My mother's advice
When you find that special someone, you lose your individuality. Your singular world diminishes, replaced by plans and dreams for a duel future. You can no longer schedule your time without thinking of how it will affect your partner. Steps forward are made with two sets of footprints walking side by side along a path strewn with bright hopes.
As you fall in love, your heart sees what others can not. Your heart is exposed and open, yearning for fulfillment, the completion of a promise. Can you give your heart to another, trusting they will accept your commitment? Will the exchange of hearts be mutually accepted?
If the answer is yes, then the concluding settlement is a union of two blended hearts: a marriage young, but alive and strong.
The First Years
A great relationship is about two things, first, find out the similarities, second, respect the differences. —Unknown
Marriage doesn't come with a manual. No one truly enters into the relationship fully aware of the commitment required to make it all work. Believe me, we are going on 43 years of marriage and we're still working things out!
A friend once shared with me how she and her husband disagreed over the importance of dinner. Living single for years, she was accustomed to eating early and having a light snack after six pm. During their first week of marriage, whenever her husband requested dinner, she served a bag of popcorn as the evening meal. Her husband said nothing the first few days; however, when it continued over the week, he voiced his disappointment over the simple offering. It became a major issue between them.
The Truth Of The Matter
Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. —1st Peter 4:8
And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. —Colossions 3:14
Making Marriage Work
No One Ever Warned Me
I married young. My knowledge of marriage consisted of fairy tale stories where the prince and princess lived happily ever after. No one ever warned me (okay, maybe my mom did) marriage required compromise. If you block your partner's point of view, you are doomed to a road filled with anguish and disappointment.
Compromise was not a popular word in my vocabulary during my early years. I pretty much saw things in terms of what I needed or thought was needed to make things work. Of course my dear hubby saw things differently. What happens when two worlds collide?
Years and years later, I finally discovered the secret to a happy marriage: communicate in order to build trust between each other. Don't assume that your sweetheart is seeing the picture from the same perspective. Once you know how the other thinks, you must be able to compromise, or at least listen to their story and understand their reasoning. How you make major decisions is no longer a one-sided process. As the old saying goes, it takes two to tango.
Can You Compromise?
What is your preference on . . .
Differences of Opinion
Fresh or Frozen, Eat out or Home-cooked, Natural or Processed
Worship together. Separate faith worship. No faith.
Daily, once a week. Types of intimacy. Precautions used?
Bathing together? Use the toilet in private? Toiletries on the counter or stored?
Cat, dog, bird, or ?, Inside or outside home. Allowed to sleep in bed. None wanted.
Self-clean ups, assign chores, one person does the cleaning
Visit family daily, monthly, holidays and special days only. Share problems with parents, siblings?
Have one, two, three or ? Adopt? None desired, thank you.
Keep individual bank accounts, joint accounts? Who does the budget and books?
Traveling The Road Together
Do I Stay Or Do I Go?
Love is an unconditional commitment to an imperfect person. To love somebody isn’t just a strong feeling. It is a decision, a judgment and a promise. —Unkown
Value and appreciate the people who sacrifice their “something” for you. Because maybe that “something” was their everything. So maybe they don't do things to your liking. Perhaps they like popcorn plain and you prefer it with butter. Those are minor differences. But when someone changes their point of view because they believe in you, it's something. Value their choice to ride along with you.
The road you travel together is going to have surprises. Surprises that may shake your world or at least make traveling difficult collectively. Jumping off mid-way is not an option. I've experienced some pretty hairy and scary times during these past forty plus years, but I hung on. I am not perfect. Ed, my hubby, is not perfect. But together we travel better than alone.
When you come to a fork in the road and you are pondering: do I stay or do I go? I hope you at least talk it through with your spouse and be honest about your feelings. Life's journey is an adventure. Make it a good one.
© 2014 Dianna Mendez