By the time you read this, I hope to god I am in Rapid City, South Dakota. I hope I am not in a sketch hotel and that's it is just a really great deal. A steal of a deal that people pass up. I hope it has air conditioning, a bed bug free bed and wifi. I just hope all of these things because it will have been a ridiculously long day of travel. If you do not follow me on Instagram, you should. I'll try to post pictures of our adventures and of course, anything really hilarious I come across.
But onto a somewhat serious topic.
I have a blog reader who has been a reader almost from the very beginning, which I'm not kidding, I think was 2008. Yikes. But she's kind of one of those undercover readers you don't know is there until you get an email out of the blue and they tell you that something you wrote made them pause and feel compelled to write you. Which is really amazing, and just.... I just really love it.
I recently received an email from her and though I don't know her at all, she feels like she knows me through my blog (which also is very cool), and she wanted my advice. And it's just kind of humbling when a person is willing to tell you what's going on in their life and see if maybe I have advice or a solution. Because honestly, it helps. I don't know where I'd be without total strangers helping me, so I'll return that favor.
Unfortunately, her and her husband are really in a tough spot. They've been having marital issues for a few years. They've handled a bout of infidelity a few years ago, went to counseling and did the whole bit. But lately, things aren't the same. The spark is gone. They argue a lot. Both of them basically feel indifferent towards the other. And now when they argue over something pretty dumb, it snowballs into something huge and someone will resort to saying, "So maybe we should just get a divorce?". So basically, that's where they are at and she wants to know how I do it.
And to that I say, I fly by the seat of my pants.
One thing I have learned in ten years of marriage is that it is hard and it sucks a good portion of the time. I think the real benefit for me is that when we were first married, I worked for a senior volunteer program. And when I got married, all of those volunteers were just thrilled and gave me loads of advice. But the best two pieces of advice I ever got were:
- Start how you mean to finish. This actually came from my boss and she said it's so important that if you are going to be that wife that makes your husband's lunch, leave little love notes in his car, set his clothes out, have dinner ready at 5, etc- then you better be prepared to do that forever. Because as soon as you stop, he feels upset and like you're neglecting him. You'll get mad he's being a baby. He's mad because you're mad and that you don't understand how he feels, etc. And it's so true.
- It's going to be really awful, but no marriage makes it to fifty years without the awful. And it's also true. Every person I know who has been married for the long haul have all told me they hit real rocky periods in their marriage where they questioned their spouse or if this was right for them. But it always comes around. It's like the tide, it's good and it's bad. You just have to work really hard at it.