Marriage is stressful. I don’t take it for granted that Dave and I have made it eight years together when it seems like so many couples are getting divorced. I’ve often thought about the phrase “the seven year itch” made famous by the marilyn monroe movie.
When you’re married, you do get itchy. You get irritated by the sounds your spouse makes when they blow their nose or chew their food, you see them when they’re sick and pathetic and super annoying. You prickle when they do something that you think is incredibly stupid but they for some reason think is a good idea. You wonder what life would be like with someone else, if you made the right choice in marrying your spouse, and whether someone else would be a better fit.
Eight years ago today Dave and I promised to each other that regardless of annoying bodily noises, hurtful words, empty wallets or luxurious vacations we would love each other until our bodies waste away in the grave. This weekend we attended the wedding of two friends. Weddings are like prom when you’re married- you get dressed up, go dance with your friends and eat, drink and be merry and your chances of getting lucky at the end of the night are much higher than if you’re a 16 year old who has borrowed your parents buick for the night. Our friend Brad conducted the ceremony & he talked about the word covenant- the promise of being together no matter what. As I sat there with Dave holding his had thinking about these last eight years I was so thankful that we’ve made it this far by God’s grace. I was reminded that forgiveness is the soothing balm that covers the heart when giving up seems easier. I was reminded that when you make a promise, you get one shot for better or for worse. And when you think about being with someone else, the mental pictures are akin to something off of the bachlorette rather than nanny 911. The experience of marriage is neither and it is both. So, here are my eight reasons I love my husband and wish for 8×88 more years of marriage with him:
1. He makes me laugh. every. day. Of all the people I’ve ever known Dave can make a witty comment that just cracks me up when I don’t expect it. And we can just be silly together.
2. He is a deep thinker. One minute we can be talking about which muppet we most emulate and then the next minute we’re talking about how prayer works, or environmental conservation theory.
3. He is an amazing cook. When Dave married me I could cook three things: quesadillas, nachos and spaghetti. When I make a sandwich it’s bread, mustard and meat. When Dave makes a sandwich he makes basil aioli, with grilled meat, two different kinds of cheese, sliced tomato and crisp lettuce. I used to look at him pathetically as I ate my utilitarian sandwich, but now I just ask him to make me one too 🙂
4. He prays like he means it. Dave often reminds me that we really can trust Jesus, pray big prayers and live life as the adventure it’s meant to be. Why? Because God has our backs. Dave helps me to live into that reality when we take walks together, talk about what’s rattling around in our heads and pray about it together.
5. He loves surprises and plans for special things in our lives. For valentines day once he surprised me with a trip to a Chicago bed & breakfast, once he made a special playlist for a date, another time I came home & our whole lawn was torn out because he had got a deal on some sod & knows I love the look of a green, well kept lawn (I am my fathers daughter!) There are other times that he simply tell me that I look beautiful, that I said something that encouraged him or made him laugh. I’ve loved the big and small surprises.
6. He is the most resourceful man I know. He’s learned how to fix our cars mufflers by reading the sears auto mechanic handbook. He takes scrap wood and turns it into furniture or fixes our house. He regularly finds designer jeans (for himself) at goodwill. When he was staying home with Reuben he found a dad’s group to hang out with so he didn’t have to be home alone with a baby. The man can find a deal no matter what, help us to live on budget & still feel like we’re in the lap of luxury. He uses his creativity and resourcefulness to care for our home, family & do his job in a way that I don’t think anyone else could.
7. He rocks his own style. The first day I met Dave he pulled up his shirt to reveal a strip of his hairy gut, pointed to it and said “the ladies love the strip of seduction, you know you love it too” I was simultaneously disgusted, amused and impressed that he was so comfortable with his body that he could make fun of himself while flirting with me. He finds cool vintage shirts that make his blue eyes sparkle, has changed his hairstyle more times than I could count and isn’t afraid to walk on (the fashion) wild side. It has been a rare moment in our marriage where I’ve uttered the phrase “you’re wearing THAT?” And when I have it’s usually with delight at the cool outfit he’s picked out.
8. He empowers me to be the woman God has created me to be and prays me through it when I’m scared. Some men would be freaked out that their wife is higher up the chain on the career ladder, has ambitions to write books, get degrees, travel the world and preach, be an awesome mom and still look cute while doing it all. Dave tells me “go for it- you have to be who God has made you otherwise you’ll be miserable…now go do your hair otherwise you’ll be late for your preaching gig.”
So, happy anniversary to my wonderful hubby! I’m glad to be with you no matter what we’re doing or where we’re at.