The Secret of Marriage

Marriage is hard and it’s not going to read like the relationships in your romance novel. Characters in a book are controlled by the writer, so it’s easy to manufacture storybook love. 

This past year I’ve begun to dive into what it takes to maintain relationships and discovered I view people as good or bad, and the moment they feel ‘bad’ I don’t want anything to do with them.

Using my gut reaction has been how I’ve made it through life making decisions, and for the most part, I trust my gut over anything.

What I have learned about my gut is that it needs a new set of rules to determine if a person is safe and not write-off someone who crossed my boundary, momentarily made me angry or, etc.

When my Grandmother died the first day was filled with ‘bad’ Grandma thoughts, which were really wishes I had about our relationship that never came true. It was easier to be angry than sad.

After one sleep, I started to remember her for what she did offer–no matter how far away we were from her, she made sure to come visit at least twice a year and one of those visits always fell on Easter.

She might not have been the huggable, snuggable, most warm feeling Grandma some were used to, but she was mine and most importantly, she showed up. Grandma made sure she was present for the important moments.

And in death she made me realize people can’t be categorized as ‘all good’ or all bad.’ We’re humans and have flaws.

How does Grandma’s death relate to the marriage secret I promised to tell? 

Your significant other is flawed, too. For a long time, I expected my Hubs to be better than the rest. I held him to the romance novel standard because when we met he did sweep me off my feet. I felt like he was my prince charming, and therefore should act like it all the time.

Without realizing it I put him up to perfection and got frustrated when he didn’t keep up to par. For some reason my brain segmented ‘other’ relationships and marriage.

The secret to marriage is understanding because life is hard, and living with someone full time can be a nightmare. You’re two different people, who grew up in two separate households with different rules and traditions, trying to figure out how to mesh both worlds into one.

It’s an equation destined for a few rough patches when other life (career change, a cross-country move, depression) elements get thrown into the mix.

We’re human, and if you allow yourself forgiveness for not acting %100 on point then you must learn to throw forgiveness to the other relationships in your life. It’s my new personal goal, trying to understand where the other person is coming from because after all…

We’re only human.

Cultivate it.

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