A Glimpse Into A Marriage

Yesterday, Jeff and I celebrated our 16th anniversary. Sixteen years…5 kids later…it seems a little surreal. Sixteen years ago, we honeymooned at Hilton Head for a week, and then we worked at a camp as Staff Directors for the summer, where we slept on a mattress on the floor in an old kitchen and had to use the bathhouse along with everyone else. I believe when we agreed to take on this adventure, I was thinking it was going to be like some kind of an extended honeymoon, which it was not. I wouldn’t recommend newly married couples working at camp, but as I review back over our journey it was where we needed to be…where we were supposed to be…I can spend endless hours reviewing all the things I wished I had done or should have done or could have done, but it’s really all very pointless, and dwelling on that stuff just doesn’t help me live in the here and now. Real life is happening all around me, and I miss it if I’m stuck in the past or consumed by the future.

Jeff and I had an argument the day before our anniversary…well, it wasn’t actually an argument…it was more like I got mad and just didn’t talk to him, and when I finally did talk, after slamming things around in my kitchen for a while, I was just mean. What I said to him that he couldn’t refute was my use of the word typical. I don’t think I’ve ever used that word in an argument before. But once I threw out that particular word, he knew he couldn’t argue about the 16 years of his “typical” behavior. When I assigned the word typical to him, I was dredging up everything wrong that he had ever done in the past, and the poor boy didn’t have a chance, and he knew it. He said to me later that I don’t forgive easily, and he’s right. I never really let things go…it might seem like I forgive at the time, but it just means I’ve filed it away for later use.

We’ve had 16 years together…that’s a long time to grow and to learn about another person. Some years have gone relatively smoothly, and some years we’ve struggled and limped along…that’s just the way it is. In the book Real Sex: The Naked Truth About Chastity, Winner says this about married life, “We will argue, and feel broken, and wonder why we ever married in the first place-and it is God who will sustain us in those spells.” I think I personally signed on for the fairy tale marriage which I found out rather quickly doesn’t exist.

But this is the man…this is my man, and I’m learning how to love him little by little…and once again, I’m also learning that it’s really not about my feelings or my perceptions at the time…they’re not trustworthy, and they change. There have been times when I’ve thought Abba must have made a mistake when he gave me this man. But I’ve come to the conclusion that Abba always knows what He’s doing, and it’s always good, whether or not I choose to see it that way at the time. And my heart is filled with graditude for an Abba Father who sustains me at all times…and who has gifted me with Jeff for this lifetime.

8 Responses to “A Glimpse Into A Marriage”

  1. May 31, 2008 at 10:07 am

    Happy Anniversary, Babe. And, btw, this is your official anniversary card, such as it is….I’m working on getting a shredder for those files in my head…:)

  2. 2 Julie
    June 1, 2008 at 7:52 pm

    Congratulations on 16 years together. Looking at the picture I think y’all got married at 15. Y’all look like babies!

  3. June 1, 2008 at 8:15 pm

    Thanks! Actually I think we were babies…I was 20.

  4. 4 LeeAnne
    June 2, 2008 at 3:34 pm

    Congratulations guys! What a rare thing anymore to celebrate so many years together! I know this is truly a celebration of many different overcome trials, etc. and am thankful, with you, that you two are now celebrating 16 years together! This Nov. will be our 16th also. Not to steal your thunder though! May you have many more, filled with lessons and love, which can only bring you closer to God and therefore: closer to each other!

  5. 5 bethany
    June 5, 2008 at 4:31 pm

    I think you already know how to LOVE him, it’s the LIVING with ’em that’s hard! Happy anniversary! Miss you guys desperately!

  6. June 5, 2008 at 7:04 pm

    lol…We miss you too!

  7. 7 noelle
    July 23, 2008 at 9:52 pm

    wow kim… look at you guys….

  8. 8 Dr. Michael A. Smith
    August 18, 2008 at 2:05 pm

    Hi Kim!
    Married 16 years! I cannot believe that. Seems like only yesterday I had you in class and you were giving me grief! Congrats! The next fifty are the hardest. I had a notice that you wrote something on my wall–what ever that is! I have no clue how to get to that.

    Dr. Mike

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