I’ve contemplated many times if weddings are pure magic. Every time we head home after a wedding the things we were bickering about on the way there seem to become too silly & unworthy of revisiting.
We attended a wedding recently & after months of feeling overwhelmed by our stressful life, we proved my theory, true. That “wedding magic” made all the yuck melt away.
Our song came on at the reception. Requested by me 😉
We made our way to the dance floor & began to sway together. Looking into each other’s eyes, like we do every single time we hear this song.
His hands around my waist & my arms around his neck, we swayed & slowly turned in circles on the dance floor together. Married. In-love.
Suddenly my brain is firing away with memories:
Our wedding day – a mixture of drama, love, anticipation, misunderstanding, pain, & joy. During this song, it all melted away. Nothing mattered except us. Our new life. Together now, forever if we decided to keep choosing to be. Safe. Seen. Loved.
Our first year of marriage – a year filled with passion. So many heated arguments & passionate lovemaking. In the midst of all the learning how to live together & how to do this marriage thing right, dancing to our song in the living room by candlelight. Once again all the things we were so rusty at, melted away & it was just us. The bills non-existent for a moment. Fear vanquished. Safe. Seen. Loved.
When he attended a wedding without me – We didn’t have the money for us both to fly to a friend’s wedding, so he went on his own. I remember the phone rang & music immediately started playing through the speaker. He had requested our song for me, letting me know that just because we were apart I was still with him. He still loved me dearly. Our commitment was something precious to him even when I wasn’t there to celebrate it with him. Safe. Seen. Loved.
New Parents – We had gotten a babysitter for our then two-year-old & danced together in a barn @ my cousin’s wedding. Life was stressful. We had endured much loss financially & with the relationships we loved & trusted. At that moment when life felt so uncertain, our song played. We gazed at each other, questions behind our eyes, but knowing somehow through it all that what we had was worth holding onto. Safe. Seen. Loved.
When our healing began – We attended a wedding where some of the people we had lost connection & safety with also attended. We had grown in the time apart & when our song came on we danced for us. Not because we should or shouldn’t, not because it’s what we had grown accustomed to over the years, but because even when those relationships were shaky, ours was not. We held onto each other a little tighter, snuggled in a little more, & told each other with our eyes that no matter what happened we were Safe. Seen. Loved.
Ten Year Anniversary – We sat by our fireplace & read a new set of vows to one another. Because the things that mattered ten years ago when we didn’t have a clue, had changed just enough to need some freshening up. We played our song. Danced in the candlelight again. Safe. Seen. Loved.
Three Kids In – At that most recent wedding I mentioned when our song came on; I told him that I had requested it. He lovingly responded by calling me snotbag! Because that’s what he calls me when I surprise him. [don’t worry it took me awhile to warm up to it too, but I came around]. It was the first time we had all three of our kids at separate sleepovers for a whole weekend. We NEEDED this time together, to chat, find each other, & just breathe a little. Even if it was a hectic weekend, not having three children begging for attention & fighting over every damn thing was a beautiful thing. [only for a couple days though, because I totally missed our lovely Team Awesome chaos]. But as we swayed back & forth singing the lyrics together that night at the reception, to each other, my eyes kept watering…
The line that always makes my eyes turn to reflecting pools?
Come away with me & I’ll never stop loving you
It really is so difficult to put deep emotions into words. But every time I sing that line to him, I’m choosing him all over again. I’m choosing him over & in spite of the mess & the pain.
We usually have small fragmented conversations during the song. Whether it be remembering sweet moments we’ve shared or maybe an apology for losing sight of who we are as a couple. At this particular wedding though, I looked up at him & I said I’m sorry for being so angry all of the time. My eyes watered as I said it & again as I typed those words.
Friends, sometimes my mess, pain, & grief they feel SO big & that makes me feel SO out of control. I prefer things to be familiar & knowing what to expect. This allows me the opportunity to respond properly & be the loving, memory making momma that I know I am. But when the chaos gets too much, & I’m staring at piles of laundry, boxes that need to be sorted & donated, a sink full of dishes, school papers that need to be gone through, did I mention piles of laundry? The kids start being sassy with each other or Lord help us all, they start being sassy with me! My anger shows up so quickly as if it were on the sidelines of the game watching intently, just waiting to be tapped in & obliterate the opponent. This is not who I am. This is who I refuse to be. I can handle my chaos better. I choose to. I will not be perfect, nor do I want to be. But I do want to change in such a way that is visible to my family. Because they deserve to feel Safe. Seen. Loved. Just as much as I do.
So as tears trickled down my face after my admission & apology, without skipping a beat my hunky hubby replied, I’m sorry for being absent. I will tell you, that sometimes the memorable moments in your marriage & life are not because everything fell into place perfectly & you shared some well-planned greeting card sentiment. Those are great for sure. But in this moment of honesty & vulnerability with one another about our flaws, I felt closer to my hunky hubby than I have in months.
He wasn’t apologizing for something after I nagged at him or gave him the passive aggressive shoulder. I wasn’t apologizing after losing my cool & melting down. It was just an honest moment between a couple that was reminded once again of the pure innocent love they shared on their wedding day. Clueless & pretty naive but determined & unified.
I don’t want to go back to being who we were on our wedding day. I also never want to lose sight of the way I desired to love that man with every fiber of my body that day. I never ever wanted him to question my love for him. I wanted him to live a life where he felt respected, adored, …Safe. Seen. Loved.
I also never want him to lose the look in his eye that told me without words that I was the best thing that ever chose him. That he was a winner because he had me. The way that he told me we could conquer anything as long as we were together. & we have. Heaven knows we haven’t skipped through the minefields, & there has been plenty of explosions & learning opportunities. But he looked at me then in a way that told me that no matter what I was Safe. Seen. Loved.
Almost twelve years ago when we got married, we didn’t plan on becoming angry & absent in our relationship. But, we did decide that if we ever arrived at that destination, we would refuse to stay there. THIS decision is what matters most. The choice.
We have to believe, married or not, that where we are right now in life is not a permanent post.
Whether you are having the time of your life, money is flowing, success is your middle name, your friendships are flourishing, & life just seems too good to be true.
Or your sitting in an empty house trying to figure out how to pick up the pieces, you’re fighting a disease, you keep receiving rejection letters, you’ve been trying to conceive & it’s just not happening, you feel lonely, or your drowning financially.
What we must remember is that being in either of these places is not permanent.
We keep moving forward. Life has ups & downs. Success & rejection. Experiences where we are treated fairly & other times when we are grossly mistreated. But it doesn’t last forever.
I choose to put down my weapons, that I’ve grabbed in anger. & He decides not to hide from me by falling asleep on the couch or hanging out in the bathroom for the evening.
Now, please don’t misunderstand me. My anger is not the problem. It’s not even unjustified! I have a great list of reasons to be angry. & my husband doesn’t hide from me on purpose. His stress mounts & his body cries for sleep, that he honestly needs. So I’m NOT saying, never be angry. Or never fall asleep on the couch or enjoy a game on your phone while you use the restroom. What I AM saying is there’s a proper way to present your anger & frustration. & there is a proper way to handle stress. Choose your partner over the emotional responses your circumstances create within you.
We can accomplish this by taking a deep breath & talking things out. Being an active listener & reminding ourselves to be present in the now.
It’s a work in progress.
He’s worth it. I’m worth it. Our marriage is worth it. & our kids seeing us work it out & have a healthy relationship, is worth it.
So we keep moving forward! Determined to keep providing safety for one another. To keep seeing one another. & to keep loving each other the best way we can.
I hope this inspired you to love your partner well, & to not be afraid of doing it wrong.
How long have you been married? What’s your song? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!
Let’s keep moving forward choosing love together friends!
The Mess in Me Honors the Mess in You