(This is in response to my sweet friend, Megan‘s post asking for pearls of wisdom for her upcoming marriage . . . )
First and foremost, I pray that you are blessed with an overwhelming sense of enthusiasm, optimism, hope, and flexibility. You’re in for the ride of your life (literally, your life!) but it is good. Bittersweet at times, but good. There is so much I would like to tell my nearly-married self some 7 years ago that might have saved me from some heartache, but then again, I also think that the hard times have led to sweet times and wisdom can’t be gained when all is wine and roses.
I’d say steer clear of negative talk. There’s a lot of it. In fact, someone who shall remain nameless even pulled Jason aside on our wedding day to tell him he still had time to back out. Nice. Let’s just say that person wasn’t an ace of relationships either. Don’t get me wrong, marriage is hard and downright frustrating a lot of times. Anytime you put two people together who, by their very nature, are completely different, there’s bound to be friction. There’s also mystery and romance and friendship.
Fighting is to be expected. Fight fair. I’d highly recommend setting ground rules for when the knock-down-drag-outs do come. Speak your mind, but do so in love. Also a good tip when things start to get too heated and you’re tempted to throttle your spouse…just get naked. It’s impossible to fight with a naked person, and it inevitably leads to make-up sex.
On your wedding day – ENJOY IT! You (and/or) your parents paid a butt-load for it, so for pete’s sake have a good time. Eat your cake, drink your punch, dance . . . let someone else stress about the details. All that matters is your man standing at the end of the aisle anyway. Bridezilla need not rear her ugly head – because that’s a good indication that you’re focusing on the wrong things. Just reax. Breathe. Kiss you man. It will be okay.
Leave and cleave. This is important. If you’ve been skimming til now, stop. You and your husband are a new family. Don’t go crying to your family and friends every time you have a spat. Boundaries are your friend. Don’t throw your spouse under the bus to make you look better, because you always end up looking worse.
Love and Respect. Best marriage book we ever read. In fact, it revolutionized our marriage. You desire love; he desires respect. Stay off of the crazy cycle – you disrespect him, he acts unloving to you so you disrespect him, then he acts unloving to you….see what I mean?
Just remember that your wedding day is not going to be the most important day of your married life – just one of many. Have grace – lots of it. Don’t diss your girlfriends, they will always be important and necessary. Be flexible and willing to change. Be ever more intimate with God – a cord of three strands is not easily broken (Eccl 4:9-12)
Hope that helps….I know it’s scatterbrained and all, but after 7 years I have enough to write a book of my own.
Now go get Hitched!