Everyone has it to dish out, right? Oftentimes it's with the best intentions, but unless it's asked for, it often comes off as preachy. I am a researcher at heart. When I'm passionate about something, I will stop at nothing in my quest to learn everything about it. My inner journalist comes out and I ask anyone and everyone who has any knowledge about what I'm learning about. If there's something to read about it, something to watch about it, I'm on it.
In my soul-searching, I've done lots of researching and have gone to people who can relate to my situation. I've talked to people who have gone through divorce, married people who worked through their tough times, and couples who have had long-lasting, successful marriages. Anyone can stay married and put on a good show. What I wanted was to talk to someone who had a good marriage. What was behind their success?
I've had the privilege of knowing people who not only have been married for longer than I've been alive, but have done it in a way that their love for each other still shines through. What would it be like to still be madly in love with someone after decades together? I don't hide that I'm a chicken shit. I'm a runner. I ran from a long-term relationship when it stopped being fulfilling and sprinted from two short-term relationships when they wanted more from me that I was willing to offer. My heart was incapable of letting anyone in. Then I met Ryan and something was palpably different, at least to me. The walls caved in and flooded with a pure, beautiful and raw kind of love that I'd never experienced before. It was innocent and so unbelievably real. I fell quickly and hard. It took me by surprise and I was unprepared for how immediate it was. It freaked me out and I pulled away. How could I feel so intensely for someone that I've known for such little time? Why am I so captivated by this person? How could I possibly feel like I can't live without him when I've only known his existence for what seemed like only moments? I panicked. I had to free myself from this monster that was consuming me. But every time I stopped for a moment to breathe, his face flooded my thoughts. I wanted to be wherever he was.
I've never not loved my husband. It pains me to remember how we were. I long for those days. Every now and then, he tosses a glance my way that mimics the ones he shot me when it was new and I swear, I can literally feel the adrenaline pulse through my veins. I can feel my heart skip a beat. It's moments like those where I stop dead in my running shoes and know there's something there. This is something worth saving. If only for another opportunity to have him look at me the way he used to.
I got the absolute best marriage advice I've ever gotten from someone I highly respect recently. What I most respect about this person is their ability to be objective, regardless of their blood or non-blood relation to whoever they're dealing with. They said that it's important to treat each other like royalty, to pamper each other and that all of the little stuff doesn't matter. I have gotten a lot of marriage advice, but this has spoken to my heart more than anything else. So simple, yet so brilliant. When it's all said and done, will it really matter that his socks don't make it into the laundry hamper or his dish in the sink?
At the end of the day, my ultimate goal is to raise, happy, balanced, strong babies. I don't care how successful, smart, happy a person is, if they come from a broken home, the chip is still there. My siblings and I are all successful, smart, happy people, but we all carry the chip that all kids of divorce carry on their shoulders. We may not feel it all the time, but when holidays roll around and our time is split between parents, it's heavily felt. I don't want that for my kids. I don't believe in staying with someone just for the kids, because doing that can do more harm than good. But I do believe that if there's a shadow of a possibility of saving something, it's worth bringing light to.
I guess that's where I stand right now. If there is a sliver of hope for us, I want to put my all into it and if it fails, then at least we know we gave it our best shot.