Sometimes, I feel like happily-ever-after romance gets a bad rap.
“It’s not realistic,” the nay-sayers proclaim.
“Just wait until AFTER the honeymoon,” they warn.
“Endings shouldn’t always be happy!” they demand.
And sure, I get it. Relationships take a lot of work, and too many marriages these days end up broken and dissolved. I’d bet many of you have even experienced a broken not-so-happy marriage or walked through that difficult season with a friend.
But I was thinking about it lately and looking at my own marriage. We’ll be married 19 years in October. It has not been 19 years of a happy, perfect married life. We’ve fought. We’ve gone to bed mad. We’ve cried in marriage counseling. We’ve slammed doors. We’ve walked through the tragedy of a miscarriage and the very long, hard road of having a child born with a severe heart defect. We’ve disagreed on parenting decisions, we’ve called each other out on sin, and we’ve yelled until we were red-faced and out of breath. (okay, fine, that one is more like “I’ve” because I’m definitely the yeller in the relationship.)
But we’ve also made-up, woken up and apologized, reconciled, flung open doors and rushed together to embrace. We’ve clung to each other through our hardships, we’ve raised/are still raising 4 pretty wonderful daughters together, we’ve championed each other’s wins, and we’ve laughed. A lot.
So while married life might not be roses and rainbows and smiles every moment, it definitely still HAS some clearance-bought-roses, kid-colored rainbows, and face-aching grins.
I like to remind myself that of that when I come to that sigh-worthy ending of a book. First, man. The previous 300 and some-odd pages have most definitely NOT been all happy. In fact, in a good book, there are moments when as a reader I’m not 100% sure there will BE a happy ending. That couple NEEDS a happy moment by the end of a book after what us authors throw at them! But a happy book ending doesn’t mean conflict won’t come, but it’s also okay to savor those good moments. Remembering the good is what helps make going through the tough stuff more tolerable. Remembering the sigh-worthy moments that will eventually come helps you trudge through the messy work of relationships.
So here is to happily-mostly-afters! May your marriages be full of laughter, love, and really good make-up kisses!!
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