The Hard Work

Marriage can be hard. It can also be fun and silly and joyful and rewarding. But sometimes marriage is an uphill climb, over broken glass, in the snow, without shoes. The idea that two people who grew up with different parents and different families under different circumstances and who have different expectations and dreams can come together and create a harmonious life together is a bit of a leap. Most people take that leap under the adrenaline of love without fully contemplating the obstacles that lie ahead. I was older and, while definitely operating under the steam of love, under no such an illusion. Still the negotiations wear me down sometimes.

I am always surprised to hear young women speak about marriage as if it is a conclusion. It may be the end of a search for a mate, but it is just the beginning of the real journey. That awesome wedding is a distant memory of a great party five years in when you are having the same argument for the twenty-seventh time. Compromise becomes crucial and meaningful conversation requires honesty and vulnerability.

Don’t get me wrong: most of the time my marriage makes me feel loved, safe, happy and cared for. We are usually on the same team working toward the same goals. I am blessed to be married to my best friend in the whole world. The downside of that scenario is that when your best friend in the whole world hurts you, it’s hard to know where to turn. Ultimately you have to turn back to the source of the hurt, knowing he hurts too, and work it out.

I love my husband and my marriage; I just hate being a grownup sometimes.