Peaks, Valleys, and Somewhere In Between

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I’ve been concerned about my blog lately. And by blog, I mean my marriage.

Having a blog about your marriage is a great way to keep tabs on things. Just like I’m sure having a blog about healthy eating is a great way to keep track of how healthy you are actually eating, or how having a blog about parenting is a great way to keep track of how good you’re doing with your own children. Blogs are like giant, very close mirrors. The honest ones often do more for the writer than they do for the reader.

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Lately I’ve noticed that I haven’t been posting hardly at all about my marriage. Which is something to think about, considering this is a marriage blog. I’ve been trying to think of something to write about for two weeks now, but nothing has come to mind. Which has me concerned.

In two weeks, NOTHING HAS COME TO MIND ABOUT MY MARRIAGE.

At first, I thought that was fantastic. We aren’t fighting, we aren’t in crisis mode, we aren’t struggling with a challenge, we aren’t working through something deep and meaningful. We aren’t really anything. We just are.  For a week, I thought, “Well, that’s great!  Look how far we’ve come!  Look how good our marriage is doing!”  And then two weeks went by and my mind continued to stay blank about my marriage.  That’s when the panic began to set in.  “What’s going on?  What’s happening here?  Are we 7-year-itching?  Are we avoiding real issues in our marriage?  Are we regressing?  Or worst, are we (gulp) growing apart????”

Don’t you love the female mind?  Such a powerful tool.  And like most powerful tools, it can really wreak havoc when not used properly.  Doubting my marriage simply because things are going smoothly is not using my power tool correctly.  Instead, I should be using my power tool to do powerful things.  Like writing my sweetheart a note to tell him how much I love him even when life is calm.  Or like praying more about how I can be a better wife.  Or like planning a really awesome date night.  Power tools don’t always have to blaze trails or fight through hard things.  Sometimes power tools can be just as useful doing practical things, like hanging a ceiling fan or bookshelf.

All of this is to say that:

A) My marriage is enjoying a little period of inactivity.  We’re not growing necessarily at the moment, but we’re enjoying each others company while we’re idling.

B) My marriage will need to start growing again here soon.  My mom told me one time that a marriage is like a shark – if it isn’t moving forward, then it will die.  (Did you know sharks have to keep moving or they will die?)  So, forward motion is always the goal, but it’s kind of nice sometimes to just be still for a while.

C)  I have a powerfully strong female mind.  Shocking, I know.  And while most of the time, that massive power tool sitting on my shoulders can be used for all kinds of important work – like growing my marriage, finding new ways to raise two sweet babies, and learning about how to become a better person myself – sometimes, that power tool can take a break and, as Bean says, chillax for a while.

Life without storm clouds is not the worst thing in the world, and neither is a smooth sailing marriage.  We might not be doing anything truly blog-worthy, but I’m enjoying this time with Chris.  We’re cuddling on the couch while watching TV at night, laughing at the kids behind their backs (Bean said, “Holy shoot!” tonight and we cracked up!), and holding hands while we drive down the road.  It might not be forward progression, but that might not be such a terrible thing.  Peaks are incredibly uplifting in a marriage, and valleys can be so very strengthening.  But sometimes the in between is awfully satisfying, too.

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18 Thoughts to “Peaks, Valleys, and Somewhere In Between”

  1. I personally think the heat is to blame. I think its just so darn hot that everything and everyone has decided its time to sit still.

  2. Understand. I would kind of go for those in between or at least valley times because we’re for sure going through one of those peaks with the first baby and all…

  3. Holding hands while you’re driving down the road is a wonderful thing =) It’s one of the small things I look at in my marriage: Are we touching each other even when we’re not doing the hanky panky… because that says a lot {or CAN say a lot} about the state of a marriage.

    As always, I love your honestly about marriage, and your willingness to keep working on it, in every stage.

  4. Bonnie B.

    SO much will ‘happen’ to your marriage in the coming years that you will kick yourself in the butt remembering the times you fretted about nothing happening in your marriage. Ha! ENJOY these times with a quiet smile shared between the two of you. And just chillax, as Bean says. (FYI, I’ve been married 30 years. Same guy. True story.)

  5. We get this too- periods of time where our marriage is neither in trouble nor flourishing. It’s just ‘blah’ time. You are right, it’s not a stage that should be entertained for any lengthy period of time, but it’s sometimes okay just to rest and relax and enjoy that comfortable space.
    You guys will surely get into something crazy soon enough, and things will be exciting & turbulent again!

  6. I appreciate your candidness about your marriage. In my own, year one was fantastic. Year two has been harder, but we’ve worked / been through a lot. I’m hoping year three will see us moving forward and together more…gotta keep moving! 😉

  7. Funnily enough, I was reading this in google reader and at the bottom of the post was an ad for a lawyer that said divorce is hard. Cracked me up.

  8. I’ll take a little marriage idling. In fact, I’ll take some idling in other areas of my life. Idling can be good. Batteries need to re-charge, yes?

    SJ

  9. My best friend is in town this weekend and we where talking about how my relationship has morphed over 5 years of marriage. I told her, I like to do little weekend adventures with my girlfriends, but my husband is the person I like to hang out with day to day and go on major adventures with. We used to spend every weekend doing everything together, but our interests shifted a little, and we found balance with that. I think it’s a good thing in marriage to settle into happy.

  10. Julie

    I think it is perfectly fine to “chillax” for a little bit. I did a bible study at my church this past Spring called, “What’s It Like Being Married to Me.” The book is by Linda Dillow. This book made me reflect on what kind of wife I am for my husband in God’s eyes. It asked some tough questions and it definitely has made our marriage stronger.

  11. Peggy A

    I agree with Bonnie. I have been married almost 24 years and it is nice to have some “Chillax” time because you never know when you have to put your marriage into high gear again for whatever reason.

  12. Amanda H

    Beautiful. I love the idea of a power tool. Great way to look at things. Thanks for being so willing to share all your thoughts in a public setting.

  13. Kari

    I so agree that a bit of marriage idling can be a good thing…but not for too long. I love the shark comparison–it is so important to keep it moving forward. I learned this the very hard way this year. Our marriage was idling along–no fights but nothing super amazing happening to move our marriage forward or strenghten it. We were content but idling. Then his affair happened and the life and marriage I thought we had was turned upside down. We are doing everything we can to get our marriage back on track. It is the most painful and difficult thing I’ve ever been through, so I’m afraid to ever let it idle again.

  14. Kat

    I’m the same way – when things are going well or calm, I start trying to figure out if it’s because we’re “boring” or “never spending time together like we should be” or…I don’t even know what honestly. This is a good reminder to make a little extra effort and to quit criticizing my marriage for no good reason 😉

  15. Jennifer B

    I loved and needed this post! Thank you. The Shark bit is perfect!

  16. Beanie & Gracie's Nana

    I bet Bonny and Peggy will agree with me on this, having been married for many years – Tough times and good times are both right around the corner in a marriage. But troubled times can drain you and leave you questioning your ability to even manage through the crisis. During the lowest of the lows in my marriage, it wasn’t the memory of spectacular events with my husband that carried me through. It was holding on to these sweet unencumbered precious times when life was like a still lake. Enjoy these times – But also deposit them in your memory bank. Guarantee you’ll need to make a withdrawal from time to time.

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