But, over the years, I've had people ask, "what is the secret to a long and happy marriage?" Because we are pretty much the oldest people around...and we've been married a long time.
And to that, Jim will say, "well there's LONG...and there's HAPPY." (yukyukyukyuk...you are SO FUNNY) (NOT)
And to that I always say, "jewelry."
The secret is sarcasm.
(well, only half-way kidding. But, to be used successfully in marriage, sarcasm can only be used by one person...the funny one. NOT the one whose name rhymes with "TIM.")
Side note: We are in a new small group at our church, they haven't quiiiiiite got us figured out. Which, you can't really blame them...we've been married longer than most of them have been alive.
THAN MOST OF THEM HAVE BEEN ALIVE.
Actually, I don't know if there is a "secret" to marriage. At times, marriage can be fun and exciting. Other times, it's hard work, and lots of blood, sweat, and tears. It takes commitment in the good times...and in the hard times: commitment to each other, and commitment to God. He's the One who helps us hold it all together.
I've heard it said that marriages, with families who have children with special needs, have a divorce rate of 85% or more. And yet...here we are. We are no better than anyone else...probably a lot worse. All I can say is we figured out, early on, that we were better together than we ever would be apart; that we made this family, and neither one of us was willing to let it go; and that we had great examples set for us by our parents.
Our parents also gave us great support and encouragement over the years. I guess it should've been a heads-up that tough times in marriage COULD come, when...on my wedding day...my Dad told me, "you can't come back home to us."
And who could forget the admonition from my mother-in-law: "remember, divorce is not an option...but murder is."
Doesn't that make your heart just melt? (HA!)
After our commitment to God, each other, and our family...the next, most essential component in our marriage is: HUMOR. We laugh a LOT (mainly at Jim, but whatever). I mean, you take a Type A+ guy, and a Type Laid-Back girl...and then add 4 kids to the mix...well, it's a perfect storm, right?
But we choose to laugh (MOST of the time).
Jim used to say that he lived in a house with 4 monkeys and a hyena (oh yeah? I know you are, but what am I?).
And if marriage is sanding off each other's rough edges, we are pretty much both gonna be toothpicks by the time this is all said and done.
Over the years, we've come to understand each other a little bit more. Seriously, in the beginning, I didn't understand Jim's drive for challenge and perfection in his work, but our family has definitely benefited from it over the years.
And Jim didn't always understand my opinions on how we should raise our kids, or the intentional way I went about creating our home...but he trusted me, and I like to think we've all benefited from that as well.
I always kinda wish we could see the future, but I'm also glad we can't. Like it says in my bio on here, if we had seen some of the twists and turns God would allow in our lives these past 36 years, we'd have run screaming into the woods...because we were bayyyyyyybeeeees when we got married. We had no clue about the depths of true love, or about the challenges of life in general.
But 6 years later, after Joshua was born, I had a "Jesus, Take the Wheel" moment.
Turns out, that philosophy works for every area of our lives.
So, I guess if there's a "secret" to marriage, and to life, that'd be it.
"That is why a man leaves his father and mother and unites with his wife, and they become a new family." Genesis 2:24