Sunday, June 28, 2009
I watched a couple restate their vows in church this morning. They've been married 50 years. It was an incredibly touching moment and I acknowledge the unlikely longevity of marriage nowadays. What struck me most was how I feel about marriage in general. It's work. Alot of work. But it is not impossible nor is it inevitable nor is it incredible.
I have been married 34 years. It will be 35 in January. I thought about the highs and lows and the hard parts and the good times and the bad times and thought, "What the hell, if you want it bad enough, you can make it work out."
Does this mean I'm super human or special or unique? No. I'm just somebody who wanted to make it work out for a variety of reasons.
I cannot tell you how many times my husband and I wanted to separate; how many fights we had when we threatened to "leave". We were divorced three years. That was early on. We'd been married five years, suffered through a natural disaster, and didn't weather the storm. No kids, no money, no fault.
We remarried three years later...three years we referred to as a "hiatus". We've never regretted that. It was necessary and it was awesome.
I can only say that whether our reasons for staying together make sense or not, they work. The reasons are many:
the years we spent together
the fear of living without one another
the shared experiences
Are those good or bad? Doesn't matter.
I am old school. I think divorce is too convenient. We take the easy way out when things get uncomfortable. Marriage is like a business, a partnership. It's for many reasons, not all of them are about love. There is the inevitable business of raising the family. If you have children, you owe them. It is no longer about you. It is now about the children. Too many people forget that. We, as adults, should be forced to take a test to have children. It's just too easy to have kids and walk away. Children are the future. We owe them. We've already made our mistakes. It's time to give to our children. I believe that more than I believe anything.
If children are the future, we owe them our best, no matter we've left our best behind us long ago.