DH and I celebrated our 20th Valentine’s Day together tonight. So it was really appropriate for my daughter asked me tonight how I knew I was in love with my husband. My lame, weak answer is really the truth.
I just knew.
So she pushed a little further and said, “Well, yeah, but HOW did you know?”
I responded with the same answer. I just knew.
From our first date on January 26, 1992 we knew we were madly in love, totally meant for each other and would get married as soon as socially acceptable. As gross as it sounds, the faceless man of my dreams appeared before my eyes at the Christian Student Center on the campus of Southwest Missouri State University and I was just done. DH proposed March 6, 1992, and we were married October 3, 1992. A lot of people were watching my belly for such a short courtship. A lot of people didn’t think we would make it having only known each other a year before we got married. But by the grace of God we’re still together.
I can tell you a few reasons why my daughter tells her friends we have a Cheesy Movie Kind of Love. I would have preferred my daughter to say DH and I had a Phil Collins “Groovy Kind of Love”. We don’t have it all together. We make lots of mistakes. There’s a reason for our 20th anniversary this year that we only count about 16 years of that. But here a few things that work for us.
1. We try not to treat people outside of our relationship better than those in the marriage.
It’s important to us that we don’t ridicule, call names, yell, cuss, scream etc. We wouldn’t do that to other people so we’re not going to do it to each other.
2. We don’t make a bad situation worse.
When we have our fights and arguments we try really hard to keep focused just on that issue and not pull up old fights or hard feelings. We also try to contain the controversy and keep perspective so it doesn’t get out of hand.
3. We have an “us” vs. “them” mentality.
This isn’t to be confused with an us vs the world thinking. What I mean, we don’t really act independantly of each other. From a financial aspect to a spiritual matters, it’s all for one and one for all. It doesn’t mean we don’t have our separate friendships and interests but on the core values of our marriage we’re united.
4. This one really is cheesy, but we understand each other’s love language.
This was a concept taught to us a few years ago in a marriage class and it was really eye-opening I think for both of us. It made our marriage much more relaxed and took a lot of the guessing out of what would make the other happy or what we thought individually we needed. If you’re aren’t familiar with this idea check out the website for Love Languages here==>http://www.5lovelanguages.com/learn-the-languages/the-five-love-languages/
5. As much as our kids mean to us we know we were here first and we’ll be here when they are gone.
We make time together a priority. We schedule family time but we go out together by ourselves without kids at the very least once a month. Our jobs, community involvement, and kids’ activities require us to spend a lot of time a part so our time together really gets past the mundane into almost the sacred for me. Our spiritual intimacy, physical intimacy, and personal intimacy are all tied to the intentional time we commit to each other. There is no one else I would rather be with than my DH.
We may not have a groovy kind of love but our cheesy movie kind of love works for us.
What have you found to be helpful in creating a successful marriage together?