Ephesians 4,2-3 “with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another through love, striving to preserve the unity of the spirit through the bond of peace.”
Earlier this month, my husband and I celebrated 4 years of marriage and by no means do I consider myself an expert on the subject of marriage. We have had our fair roller coaster rides which have taught me about commitment, patience, compromise and how to stay in love – even when it all seems like it’s all child talk and financial planning.
- Dream together: I never was much of a dreamer. Dreams to me were out of reach and a waste of time until I started dating my husband. I remember sitting and listening to Abner talk for hours about his dreams when we were dating. He taught me the importance of having dreams and goals. Talk about your dreams together. Not only should you talk about what you hope to accomplish as a couple but know your spouse’s individual dreams and encourage them to achieve them. Help your spouse’s dreams become a reality.
- Count your blessing at Church: There’s something so powerful about living Mass and receiving the Holy Communion together. Attending church with your spouse on Saturday/Sunday gives you both a place to meet after a noisy week and to leave all of your worries behind. It is the place where you can find some semblance of peace.It is also the place where the two of you can receive the preached word of Christ and the Eucharist.
- Know your spouse’s love language: I married the most romantic man, and honestly, I was quite crept out in the beginning. I even asked him to stop some of the cheesiness (worst mistake ever). Have you ever spent hours looking for the perfect gift to only receive an emotionless thank you? Well, that happens to me every time I buy a gift. My husband is the person who likes the word of affirmation. To feel loved he rather hear me say, multiple times a day, that I love him. I actually forgot to write him a card this year to go with his anniversary present and you better believe that after opening his gift he asked me where his card was. Whoops! Lol needless to say I now know that the most valuable item in the gift bag for him is the love card.
- Balance housework: In the beginning of our marriage I took it upon myself to do all the housework. Of course, I picked this up from watching my mom do all the cooking, cleaning and errands for the household. Thinking this is how it’s supposed to be done, I eventually realized that it was only possible for her to do this because she was a stay at home mom. My husband and I work full-time jobs and it wasn’t until this year that I burned myself out. I created a stressful situation for myself and my marriage. I tested my husband’s household skills and from there we established household tasks that we are each responsible for (e.i, Abner does not understand the concept of sweeping before moping but he is good at vacuuming so I ruled that out for me and wrote that down for him). The stress I took upon myself to have my house magazine clean and organized was a little over the top. I have lowered my standards around the house, but I think my husband enjoys me not bickering or sending him mean text messages about house cleaning a lot more.
And while we have much more learning and growing to do… here’s to four years of marriage! And just like good wine, it’s getting even stronger and sweeter with time.
Jenyfer D. Navichoque – Writer, unparalleled love