Romeo and Juliet, Lucy and Ricky, Fred and Wilma, Adam and Eve…these are just a few well known, though vastly different couples who come to mind when I think about how true love has been spotlighted throughout the ages. Romances of the past intrigue me most and I could sit for hours and listen to my grandmother talk about her experiences. To me it just seems that older generations were more romantic, more sentimental. I’m not so naïve to think that they did not have their problems, but it seems that they tried harder at making things work.
With the most romantic day of the year creeping up this weekend I started thinking about my own relationship. I have been blessed with parents who have been happily married for thirty-six years so I had a firm foundation of good example. They have taught me that when you marry someone you marry their good and their bad. There are no proverbial sick days allowed in the building of a marriage and most definitely no vacations. When you speak your vows before God and family they are sacred and meant to be kept not stretched or distorted to suit a selfish purpose.
My husband and I have seen our fair share of ups and downs since we have been married. We began our adventure like horses out of the starting gate and things haven’t slowed down yet. We are almost exact opposites on pretty much everything so I assume that that old belief that opposites attract is true. He could say black and I would say white, he would say run and I would say walk, etc., etc. Valentine’s Day has always held some significance to our relationship because we starting dating on this day, we broke up on this day, we got engaged on this day, and…well, you get the picture. We were high school sweethearts so we have had our fair share of Valentine’s Days.
Our family has grown to six and we still look at each other occasionally and find it hard to believe. The good Lord has given us four beautiful and healthy sons who keep us very busy. In all the hectic scheduling of our lives one thing has remained true and that is the fact that my husband is my best friend. He is the person I see first in the mornings and the last person I see at night. Granted there are days when I childishly stick my tongue out at him behind his back or would just like to avoid him all together, and I know he has felt the same towards me. But we both know that we are in this boat together, sink or swim, we go as one.
Sometimes I wonder about couples who are always seen together, but they never make contact with one another either by touch or sight. I love my husband and if I want to hug him or give him a kiss out in public then I see nothing wrong with that. Most of the time we sit close and hold hands, unless of course it is one of those days when we don’t like each other, but even then we still communicate. We were guests at a wedding once where Miss Nellie Meadows was in attendance. After the ceremony she came up to us and told us that we still acted like newlyweds. We took it as a great compliment coming from such a sweet lady.
Life is hectic and I understand that sometimes those fairy tales we build up in our heads just don’t live up to our expectations. Sometimes people just don’t mix well or figure out that they really don’t like each other. I have learned through almost ten years of marriage that sometimes you don’t like your spouse, but you should love them all of the time.
My two oldest boys will be turning eleven years old on the eighteenth of this month and now that they have girlfriends it is somewhat hard on this old mom to realize that I will have to share their hearts with another. My husband was having a “man to man” talk with them over the weekend about several different things. I was keeping to myself because I felt like they needed this time with their dad to have a “manly” talk. I couldn’t help, but smile though when he started talking about picking out a good girlfriend. He told them that they needed to think about what a future with that girl would be like. “She should be your best friend, someone you are happy to come home to everyday…like your mom is to me.” He definitely racked up some brownie points with that one.
My granny told me once that when my papaw died she swore she’d never deal with another man and to this day she lives alone. I think it is just because when papaw died he left a hole in her heart that no one else could ever fill. I want to love like that, to set out on a journey with one person and stay the course till God calls us home. I am thankful for my husband and his stubborn ways. I am thankful for our differences because they keep us on our toes and I am thankful that we have chosen to love through the hard times and laugh through the good.
Happy Valentine’s Day and I hope everyone has someone to love no matter what day of the year it is. Love knows no time limit or calendar space! “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” John 13:34