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8701653116_b045ff69f4_zFor the past few days, I’ve been sharing some nuggets of wisdom from other married ladies. These ladies have been married anywhere from 3 to 26 years!

I’m pretty sure I’ve been learning something from every single one of ’em, and I thought you could too 😉

If you missed Part I of this anniversary series, check it out here.

If you missed Part II of this anniversary series, check it out here.

What I’ve been saying all along is this: love is contagious, and so I just had to share what these women were saying about their marriages and anniversaries.

Enjoy!

Anniversary Round-Up Part III

Conceiving Hope, married 2 years:

“Vows on the altar provide no guarantee on the order they are lived out.  When my husband and I got married, the vows we made to each other included “I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health…”. We joke with each other that there was no promise we’d get good times before bad. But then look at the juxtaposition of that last part! Interestingly enough sickness comes before health in the marriage vows of a Catholic ceremony. The truth is that our marriage (to date) has been filled with a whole-lotta-sickness. We’ve lost all our children due to my illnesses, in one way or another. I can’t pretend they aren’t connected. Thyroid, adrenals, ovaries, immune system, hormones… it’s been a giant mess of a puzzle to unravel. We’re figuring it all out one day at a time…
 
“Nothing could have possibly prepared us on our wedding day for the illness that followed. Except the order of those words in our vows! Every bit of what we spoke to each other was meant the day that we said it, but we have learned in the years that have followed those sacred vows… that the actual words were something we could trust. There will be good. And bad. There will be sickness. And it will come before health. But at the end of the day… whichever kind it has been (good, bad, sick, or healthy), I find myself reflecting on how we had no clue when we spoke those vows. And yet we really did think and feel like we meant every word of them. God is teaching us to live it all one day at a time.”

Patty, married 3 years

“Deep down we are all broken people. Some of us more than others, but we all come into relationships with scars and wounds of our past. The same in our own marriage. We happily came into it with grand ideals and expectations, but on the inside were deeply broken; and so in working through our own brokenness we became broken together…

“With a strong foundation, you can pour the cement in, put up beams and siding, and eventually a sturdy roof. We had none of those things three years ago. All we had were our dreams, good intentions, and ideals. And when the wrecking ball came, none of those things could withstand the blow. Right now we are in the midst of working to lay that strong foundation we never had. Being broken together is teaching us how to grow stronger together. Through shattered dreams, we’ve embraced new dreams and adventures. We know ourselves more deeply and have a better understanding what goes into the strong, unbreakable foundation that makes a good marriage great. Today I remember the day we got married, but I also remember where we’ve been and where are going now. I also celebrate where God is leading us now, which is to something stronger, more faithful and enduring. Marriage is not about marrying your best friend or having the perfect happily ever after. But rather its allowing your brokenness to be molded and transformed. God loves to fix broken things and make them anew and beautiful again…and that’s what my heart celebrates today, how our brokenness is making us whole.”

Daja, married 15 years:

“I think that my husband and I are what Billy and Ruth Graham called “happily incompatible.” Can such opposites co-exist and even enjoy life together? YES! And sometimes such opposites can irritate the living daylights out of each other and they start quarreling over the variety of apples purchased at the Farmer’s Market…  And I think I’m finally–finally–after 14 years of matrimony learning that this is OK. I’m an emotional one and when we have a spat the enemy of marriage–the devil–tries to lie to me: “He doesn’t love you anymore!” I know it’s a lie. He does love me. He just wanted Red Delicious and not Fuji.

“I’m finally learning to not try to remake the man I married and to let him be who he is. I’m learning that marriage isn’t really a fifties sitcom (although, wouldn’t it be great to vacuum in heels and pearls?). Marriage is vastly more interesting than that, especially when married to someone who is different from me. It’s challenging and exciting and crazy and romantic and surprising….and so….DAILY. Marriage means having someone to run to. It means having someone to run my hair-brained ideas by before I expose them to the world. It means someone who makes fun of me and someone I can make fun of. Marriage means I have a man whose vision I have pledged to support. I am a help-meet to someone who needs my help—just maybe not in the way I thought he did. And maybe not in the he thought he did, either.  Marriage means someone who begins and ends each day with me—someone who is a living witness to my life and my journey with God…  Sometimes two opposites are perfect for each other. They are counter-balances.  Sometimes compatibility is overrated.  My husband and I are two extremes. Together we make a happy moderate.”

Mary, married 12 years:

“Our past wounds weren’t magically healed when we said “I do”.  You don’t leave everything behind when you come into a marriage.  You bring all the stuff with you, even the stuff that’s been buried or ignored for years.  You bring the stuff you’ve thought you’ve been healed from but that the Lord might need to probe further.  You bring it all.  The wounds, the memories, the insecurities, the issues.  They may hide for a while but they will at some point emerge and I believe that often it is in and through your marriage that they can be healed.  But that healing takes work and it can take a level of vulnerability that is terrifying.”

Like what you see? There’s more where that came from!  (TO BE CONTINUED TOMORROW…) Don’t miss out! Click here to subscribe to my mailing list

And after that, tell me: what have you learned through your years of marriage? I’d love to hear from you!

photo credit: John Hope Photography