Friday, October 9, 2009
Sixteen years ago today, Mike and I said "I do." Actually, we said "I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. I will love you and honor you all the days of my life."
This morning Mike said something to Annie about this being one of the best years of our marriage. The statement caught me off guard.
"Really?," I thought to myself. "This is the year that we were separated for three months and he can say that it's one of the best years of our marriage?"
We promised to be there for each other in bad times and, in my mind, this past year had more than its share of bad times. But when I thought about it a little more, I realized that Mike was right. This has been one of the best years of our marriage because we really did live up to what we promised each other on that altar 16 years ago.
We were separated, yes.
If we had parted ways, thrown up our hands and said "been nice knowing you," then it would have been bad. But we didn't.
We parted ways with an honest promise to work to find each other again. It's been hard work. Going to marriage counseling sometimes stirs up stuff one or both of us would just rather ignore. But we don't. We sit with it and we work through it. And we're better for it. So is our marriage.
While I would like to have been able to give my children an Ozzie and Harriet picture of wedded bliss, I think the example that we've provided to them over the past year is just as powerful. That love is not always rosy. That love is not about a feeling. Love is choice to honor a commitment that we made to each other and to God.
So, my huzzzband, 16 years ago I chose you. Last spring, I chose you still -- even when so much of me wanted to turn my back. And today, I choose you again.