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Why stay together and what does BUTTER have to do with marriage?

Posted by on in Marriage Stuff

"We're celebrating our 40th anniversary, which means we've been happily married for five years!"

I saw the joke on Facebook today because a friend had clicked the thumbs-up on someone's status, causing it to show up in my sidebar. Of course it was followed by winks and "ha ha"; it even made me smile. But, you have to wonder how much truth was in that post? Not just for this couple, but for all husbands and wives.

Being married for 40 years, or 25 like my parents {whose anniversary today unfortunately reminds me of how long it's been since I graduated High School in 1988}, means there's a likelihood some of that time wasn't "happily ever after", right? Jeremy and I have lived that likelihood many times in our 12 years. Marriage is wonderful...and hard. Sometimes marriage is hell and, some days, heavenly. You can't live life so closely with another person without running into conflict. Over and over. So...why stay?

Why do some couples get through the rough stuff? Why do some survive losing a job, losing a dream, even losing a child? Why do some get through the "I never expected" moments that can turn into years? Why do some couples make it - against all odds - to their 40th wedding anniversary?

I wonder if it's like the riddle my seven year old read to me the other night...

A frog jumped into a pot of cream and started treading. He soon felt something solid under his feet and was able to hop out of the pot. What did the frog feel?

{Answer: The frog felt butter under his feet, because he churned the cream and made butter.}

We jump into that pot of marriage and realize pretty quickly exactly how deep it is. We have to start treading just to keep from drowning. We pray, we go to counseling, we communicate, we die to self. Then...little by little, we feel something solid under our feet. Experience. Commitment. Wisdom? Definitely age. Whatever it is, it gives us a better footing for the next challenge. Just like butter though, that experience and commitment can melt away when the fires get hot enough. So, I guess we have to keep on churning. And pray for butter!

In fact, I think a big slab of the yellow stuff would be a great gift for my parents' Silver Anniversary. Think they'll mind?

What are some of the tough things you and your spouse have churned through together? Why did you stay? Please share your story!

 

 

 

 

 

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