Today, William and I reached our 17th wedding anniversary. I will NEVER tell anyone the road has been easy for us and that we’ve been in wedded bliss every single day because that would be a lie. Anyone that knows us and knows our story, knows that when we fight, we *FIGHT* and you should just step out of the way and let it run its course. The flip side of that is the deep, solid love that we wouldn’t trade for all the money in the world.
We come from two totally different backgrounds and for the longest time, I thought that would be the reason we split. However, those differences are what bond us together tighter than paint to a wall. Where I am weak, he is strong. Where he is weak, I am strong. Coming from the country, I possess the true Southern hospitality that sometimes leaves me vulnerable. Coming from the city, he has that brashness that some turn away from. Combine the two and what you have is a force that can’t be easily penetrated.
I know in my spirit that he would be lost without me. I don’t say that in any conceited manner because I am not naive enough to believe that another woman could not take my place. What I do know is that ours is a marriage of compromise, understanding and acceptance. Know that without him, I would not be me. It’s often said that a spouse is your other half and in our case, nothing is more true. There are some things that we don’t necessarily like in each other’s ways and actions but that is where acceptance comes in. No one is perfect but we are perfect for each other.
In him, I have a magnificent provider, protector and yes, indeed, a friend. In me, he has a supporter, a sounding board (even when he has no words to speak) and yes, indeed, a friend. Marriage is work. Its hard, hard work. To those who aren’t married, I will tell you that the biggest mistake you can make when looking for your spouse is expecting him or her to be perfect. They won’t be. Neither are you. Be a little more tolerant of the things that won’t send you into to a murderous spiral because I promise you, there are things about you that will be like the proverbial “fingernail on the chalkboard” sound to them. For those of you who are married and are ready to quit, think again. I would NEVER encourage anyone to stay in a marriage that has ANY sort of abuse (physical, mental or emotional), but don’t be so quick to walk away because he or she doesn’t do every single thing the way YOU want him or her to. You won’t do everything to his or her specifications either. If it comes to that point, you’ve crossed the line of compromise and stepped into the land of “giving in”. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t aim to please your spouse, but the day that you lose the enjoyment of being yourself in order to please the other person and can no longer maintain your own sense of self and happiness, you’ve stepped into a world of darkness. That is another blog subject for another time.
We’re off to do a little celebrating. I pray God’s blessing on our marriage and trust that He will hold us together.