nurturing my marriage.

this is a tough post to write, it feels much more personal than all of the ones i have shared here about mothering or even the ones about my brain tumour. i suppose, because my tumour and my mothering are really about me. my marriage is about me AND dear hubby.

so, here goes…

even as a little girl i knew i would be married one day. when i met dear hubby over ten years ago at treeplanting, up in the woods of northern ontario, i knew we would be married one day. there was something about him. something about the way that we clicked and felt real, instead of just right. for me, the biggest attraction was the fact that dear hubby never ever pretended to be someone he was not. and to this day, he doesn’t lie or exaggerate about who he is.

if you’ve been reading here regularly, you’ve become quite familiar with the various struggles that life has thrown our way in the past few years. our struggles aren’t worse than anyone elses, but they have been quite overwhelming and exhausting for us, as they placed tremendous pressure on our marriage. it is so easy to find excuses not to do something, especially when that something is emotionally demanding and not just something you can just run to the grocery store and pick up. i am sad to admit that our relationship has borne the brunt of our mutual neglect. it has been overshadowed by all the other things that appeared more pressing at the time. and to some degree, yes babies in incubators and tumours on pituitary glands do need immediate attention, but the truth is that we were too caught up in everything else to acknowledge what was happening to us. our marriage. and, to ourselves. i’ve heard horror stories of couples growing apart over such awful circumstances and they simply fall out of love and end up filing for a divorce. i get it. these circumstances are not the easiest to live through, let alone love through, but i noticed what was happening soon enough to do something about it.

now, as the kids are getting older and gaining incredible independence, it is easier to step away and focus on each other. we have come to a shocking realization that we have let our relationship go. we didn’t have the energy or the presence of mind to include our marriage on the to do list so, for a few years we just coasted; surviving through our family’s health crisis’ and other major stressors, by ignoring the very thing that had brought us together in the first place.
our love.

when dear hubby and i met we were young and foolish and cute and naive. now, we have lost some of the naivete, are not nearly as foolish or young for that matter. and the cute, well, it’s more wrinkly and jaded. that being said, the change in how we perceive the world, live in it and thrive in it, is not a bad thing. it’s time doing what time does. it moves. and we’re being moved along with it.

and today i am happy share that we are finding a new momentum. we are slowly working our way out of denial and starting to put real efforts into rebuilding some of the broken, weakened areas of our relationship. of course, couples therapy can be considered, and it’s something we have spoken about. but i feel like, for now, we are making some progress. together we are gaining understanding which areas need extra attention and why. it is so easy to blame the other person in a partnership for your own pain, but in reality it is up to you to hold yourself accountable for your own contributions, before any real change or growth can happen. and the thing that i have learned recently, it’s not about changing yourself or them. it’s about taking control and changing your own bad habits. whether it’s negative thought patterns, those nasty lines you repeat during each fight or the sarcastic stabs you mumble under your breath. We’re not at the point of needing to get in touch with lawyers in Jonesboro AR to discuss divorce yet (and I hope we never will be) but that doesn’t mean that we don’t sometimes let our differences come out in the open in a fiery way. For some of our friends, divorce has been the answer in relationships that have turned toxic and they felt it healthy to go their own separate ways, but we hope by discussing our differences and concerns that we can avoid this.

it’s a start, right?

dear hubby and i quietly celebrated our sixth wedding anniversary on the 17th of february at the cottage with friends and snow!

to share our love, here is probably the worst picture of us taken. the sun was so blinding, hence the bizarre distorted faces! love doesn’t always look that sexy! ha!

xo, mama lola
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  1. says

    happy happy anniversary! it is so hard to make a marriage a priority. The Man and I have had a rough few years, but recently realized that all of those “bad” were from the outside, and that as long as we acknowledged that, we could try to keep it from penetrating us.

    as an aside, what program do you use to illustrate your pictures? I LOVE THEM!

  2. says

    I read this and immediately closed my eyes and took a deep breath. You have just shared something so personal and raw and painful in some respect, and I feel honored to know someone with a heart like yours. You will find your way, my friend, because you want to. And if there’s a will, there’s a way. Happy anniversary, lovely! XOXO, Mandi

  3. says

    I love that picture!

    I think my husband and I are going through a bit of neglect too. Sometimes life gets hard. We both get tired. It seems like too much effort. We have been making some changes too.

    Happy anniversary!

    • says

      that picture is laughable, but that was the point! glad you like it!

      all the best with your marriage. it’s a lot of work, a work i progress is what i tell myself. thanks for stopping by!

  4. says

    Happy anniversary! It is so easy to let everything else slide when your kids and family life consume, well, everything. I’m so grateful for a key piece of advice we got soon before we started having kids– I don’t think it was even meant as advice, but an observation by friends who had a newborn, about how shockingly easy it is to get irritated with and snap at your partner when you’re both exhausted, stressed, etc. My husband and I talked about that conversation, and promised to be patient with each other through these intense early years of parenting. I think that awareness of being kind and patient with each other helped us TREMENDOUSLY through some pretty rough years. It also helped that we were both on board with it– it’s much easier to let your spouse’s annoying habits slide when you know he’s doing the same for you.

    I have to imagine that every marriage that lasts through time has to have its ups and downs. It seems impossible for that not to be the case. Here’s to your marriage being back on an upswing and staying that way for a good long while!

  5. says

    Happy anniversary to you two. I’m glad to hear that you have recognized that your relationship deserves to be nurtured and cared for. Although, you’re right, it is so easy to let things go when other, more pressing, issues must move to the forefront.

    Here’s to a wonderful 7th year of marriage for you!

  6. says

    I love this!! We have also had our fair share of struggles, the hardest one currently happening. It’s important to remember to be present and fight together, not beside each other.
    Happy Anniversary 🙂

  7. says

    Happy Belated Anniversary, Mama Lola. Your words ring true. It makes sense that these things happen when so much else is happening. But it’s so important to be able to acknowledge when a relationship has been put on the back burner. Thank you for linking up such a heartfelt post with Your Place @ Equis Place. It did my heart good to read it.

  8. says

    I can realte to your words, we have also had to stuggle with complicated circumstances and it hasn´t been easy to keep what makes us a couple… but we are finding the way back to our relationship again

  9. says

    Thanks for sharing, the daily struggle to keep a marriage healthy is a real one. I hope you guys are making progress.
    Thanks for hooking upa t the Hump Day Hook Up

  10. says

    As long as you’re both coasting in the same direction, and you don’t let yourselves sputter out, a bit of coasting isn’t too bad. It sounds like you’re both ready to get back up to speed now – best wishes!
    (I came from the Hump Day Hook Up.)


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