Monday, March 31, 2008

 For better and worse...real life

My heart is full and my mind is kind of on overload right now. That's an interesting place to be when you actually want to get a coherent post written. Good luck reading, I'm not sure how this is going to work out.

We spent all day Friday with my parents. Friday evening they gave Dave and I the gift of time together and their adventures in grand parenting began. I'm not sure why my mom looked like she needed to sleep for about 5 days straight when we returned 46 hours later. :)

We have certainly been the recipients of sweet generosity lately. No, it is not normal for us to have two weekends away with out the kids in the same month. Usually we get away like that once each year. I think last year it was twice, but those occasions were six months apart. This year it was twice in 3 weeks. Beyond weird and way out of my norm. Three weeks ago we enjoyed a retreat that our church and two other area churches put together. We wanted to go to that to get to the know other couples from our church better and in a different setting. It was a really great time. We were only gone for about 24 hours.

This last lovely outing was an incredible Christmas gift from Dave's brother and sister in law. They had attended a Family life Weekend to Remember marriage conference and it had positively impacted them. They shared the wonderful things they had learned and then so sweetly sent us to one.

I can't even begin to convey all of the things we learned over the weekend. I guess you'll all just have to go to one to experience it for yourselves. We enjoyed the uninterrupted time to talk. We enjoyed receiving some practical insight and advice on having a great marriage. We enjoyed being silly together. We enjoyed walking together. We enjoyed eating out. We enjoyed the king sized bed, 15 feather pillows, and down comforter. I know what your thinking and let me just tell you, I saw that big inviting bed and all I could think was, "hours of sleep, beautiful, uninterrupted, peaceful sleep!" I ran to the bed and likely could've spent the entire weekend in it. Sleeping.

Let me just share one really touching thing with you about the weekend. Friday night, Saturday, and Sunday morning we had several session where we learned some great things from wise couples. They shared what they have learned. They taught biblical principles for what works to keep your marriage moving in the right direction. It was all super helpful, but what really had an impact on me was the very last thing we did. At the end of the conference they had each couple turn towards each other, hold hands, and re-affirm their commitment to one another. Just imagine this. There were 600 people there, all standing facing their spouses. They had the guys begin. This is what I heard:

"I, David joyfully receive you as God's perfect gift for me, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love you, to honor you, to cherish you, and to protect you, forsaking all others as long as we both shall live."

Seven years ago we said some very similar things to each other. At that time I was looking at a man who could do very little wrong in my eyes. We had stars in our eyes. The future couldn't have been brighter. We were not going to be like other couples. We were really in love, and nothing could pop our bubble of ecstatic infatuation.

And then life happened.

On Sunday morning we spoke those words to each other and this time we knew. We knew poorer. Trying to make ends meet and running into frustration that spills into our relationship( We haven't really known richer...). We knew better and worse. Suddenly we know what that truly looks like. Heart wrenching moments that we never could've imagined when we made our original vows together. We made those vows looking forward. Into the unknown. This time we made them with real life experience behind our words. Knowing what we were really saying. Knowing what we were agreeing to. With our eyes opened to what could touch us, what could subtly sneak in and try to harm us. We know sickness and health. We know what it means to forsake all others for the good of us. We've disappointed each other and been selfish. We will likely disappoint each other again and selfishness will always be a battle. But now we know. We've had make or break moment and we have used those moments to bond us. It was so powerful. I think that moment will be forever in my memory.

Now onto a house full of boys. Spring break. A busy week. Real life. (Yes, those are Thomas the train underpants behind me in the picture...real life. Don't judge others for their preferences, they are comfy and I'm a Thomas fan). Boys will be greatly missing Grandma and Grandpa, who now have an all time, once for all pass into the boys favorite people of all time book. Sweet times were had by every one.

I know it was tiring, I know you have done your time, raised your kids. That's why it means so much and I am so grateful mom and dad. You'll never know how much it meant. Thanks for blessing us! May you be greatly blessed for your hours of diapering, spoon feeding, correcting, and embarrassing anatomy questions...:)

1 comment:

Sarah said...

Glad you had a great time! Love the pics :)