My current marriage of ten years is pretty awesome but, let me tell you, it is hard work. I am continually amazed at the number of people who are envious at the ease of my marriage. I have many friends who swoon over my marriage and assume that because I met and married my dream guy, our union is easy, flawless and smooth. Oh contraire! I am here to set the record straight: Just because I write books about relationships does not make me immune from having to work every single day on my marriage.
Keeping my marriage bonded and passionate takes an enormous amount of hard work. In fact, it is downright exhausting at times. My marriage is a complete roller coaster of highs, lows, adoration, dislike, annoyances, pleasures, irritation, bliss, and desire.
In contrast, my former marriage of twenty-five years was very easy. It was a piece of cake, so to speak. There were no arguments, no bickering, and oh yes, no sex. Things were easy as we glided through a quarter of a century together. My first marriage was relaxed and involved absolutely no effort to keep it together. We just coasted through the years, as husband and wife, on autopilot. We shared a life that was robotic and predictable. There were no pit stops or curves during my twenty-five year marriage. My life during that time was a straightaway with not a bump in the road. There were no highs or lows. There were no disagreements or yelling. And we never once raised our voices.
Instead, there was indifference and acceptance
There was acceptance of a brotherly love as if I was married to a guy pal. There was indifference as to the state of my marriage. It did not matter to me if my marriage failed or flourished. I simply did not care about the destiny of my marriage and that made staying married easy breezy. I eventually left my long and easy marriage. I did not leave it because of the ease of it though. I left my laid-back marriage because I was struck by the wake-up call of my own deathbed and wanted something more than a comfortable and loveless marriage before I leave this world.
Five years after my divorce, I met and married a man who literally makes me go weak in the knees. I married a man who is so incredible I still pinch myself after twelve years of marriage. I have to tell you, this second marriage, so full of life and passion, is not easy. In fact, for the first time in my thirty-seven years of married life, marriage is really hard.
I have been pondering why my current marriage of twelve years has continued to be so difficult to navigate. I often wonder why my husband and I go through such rocky points in our marriage yet continue to adore each other. I wonder why one minute we bicker and argue and in the next minute we are in each other’s arms never wanting to let go. I ponder why sometimes one of us may sleep on the couch and spend a night apart and then madly embrace the next morning. I wonder why through all of our bumps over the years, some of which would have ended most marriages, we continue to be madly and passionately in love with each other. Then it hit me: Our marriage is so hard because we are crazy about each other.
Our marriage is hard because we have to work every single day to maintain the sexy and passionate state of our marriage.
Our marriage is difficult because, frankly, there is too much to lose if it should ever fall apart. We sometimes bicker because there is so much emotion within our connected and undivided souls. Our marriage is challenging because keeping each other as a priority in our lives takes energy, commitment and thought.
Being married to a man I am crazy about, I have to make myself aware, more than ever, to keep my end of the marriage bargain up. I do not want my marriage to fail and that takes work and a daily dose of effort. Our marriage requires us to be aware of the daily state of our connection to each other and adjust the puzzle piece if it starts to come loose from our finished puzzle of love.
Over the past thirty-five years, I have experienced two entirely different types of marriage. Both marriages have produced two entirely different feelings with complete opposite levels of difficulty to maintain. My first marriage was a marriage of ease and indifference filled with a brotherly type of love. It was an easy existence. But with my easy marriage came a void of deep and passionate love in my life. My current union is a marriage of incredibly deep and passionate love, which I have come to realize, requires compromise, effort, awareness, and daily checkups to maintain its status quo.
So yes, my marriage is hard work and I finally understand it is hard because it is so wonderful.