It’s been a while since Ted and I could think about our marriage. Maybe since before we were even married. The first two years were all about my PTSD and about Ted getting a job with his law degree. The third was mostly about being pregnant and then trying to keep the baby alive. But the baby’s been alive now for eight, almost nine months so I think, on that front, we’re in a good place. Which means that we can now catch and dispel the little foxes that have grown fat in our marriage.
During last night’s State of the Marriage discussion we realized that we’ve been butting heads and talking in the same, slow circles because one of my weaknesses and one of his are feeding off of each other. And we’ve realized that the core fears in both our hearts are being confirmed by the other’s weakness. It was a heavy conversation that has brought much peace.
Ted and I are very different. My weaknesses (ahem, interpersonal skills) are often covered by his strengths (Ted loves all people very well all the time) and vice versa (I’m amazing with time management, exhortation, and (sometimes when I get good sleep) am whip smart. And Ted, who is whip smart more reliably, enjoys to be deeply with people, listen to the long stories and embrace the moments and connection. I listen faster than most people speak because I have a lot of goals and lists.).
But we’ve been having lightening strikes from this severe storm for a couple months now. And thankfully, finally, enough dead trees have burned down and we can see each other again. And we can connect over on all the ways we’ve been hurting one another and missing each other.
Marriage is hard. And a lot of work. But wonderful all the same. I’m not sure what we’re going to do about both of our weaknesses being active members of our marriage right now. We’ll pray about it because that’s all we’ve been taught to do. And because Jesus promises that in our (Can this please be a plural ‘our”?) weakness He is strong. And we’ll take each day as it comes, and mend the fence around our marriage so that the fat little foxes won’t creep back in.
Come to think of it, my marriage is the only thing that I’m hopelessly optimistic about. I believe 100% that no matter what we must face (whether internal threats or external), by the grace of God and all of the humbling and brave conversations that keep us up at night, we will make it. We’ll be old but still sitting in our two leather chairs, arguing about some obscurely fine grammar matter and how poorly I spell.