Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Happily Ever After

This past weekend I had the pleasure of seeing my baby brother get married. When he and his then-fiancée announced their engagement last August, I secretly feared that I wouldn't be around to see the big day. Thankfully, I made it!

All the wedding stuff got me reflecting on marriage, and being a know-it-all big sister I can't help but give a little unsolicited marriage advice - not that the newlyweds will read this, since they are off honeymooning!

Lounging out before the ceremony

People often sagely say that "marriage takes work" and "marriage is hard." I think they are emphasizing the wrong thing. It's not marriage that is hard; life is hard. 

In the words of my favorite superhero, "The hardest thing in this world is to live in it."

It is hard to face all the random twists and turns that life throws at you. It is hard to be thoughtful and kind. It is hard to remember to say "thank you" for all the little things. It's hard not to take people for granted. It's hard to remember to find the joy in the small moments of life. It is hard to feel all the emotions that come with being human.

At dinner, Jason was talking about an improv rule that I think is also a great reminder for life:

"The scene in your head is rarely the scene you are in."

All the small affronts that become looming problems in our minds can often obscure the life that is happening right in front of our noses. It is easy to read too much into an offhand remark, to assign motivation to a tone of voice. It is easy to read weary body language as frustrated, and a comment born of exhaustion as a personal attack. I have often found that when I get irritated with Jason, it actually has nothing to do with the glass left in the sink, but everything to do with how tired I am.

Being a good person is no small feat. Sometimes life is really hard.

So it only follows that marriage has all the same challenges as life. At the same time, it carries with it joy and partnership, love and friendship. For those lucky enough to find it, marriage becomes another one of the blissful challenges you face during your journey on this planet.

Congratulations, Phillip and Liz! May you have many, many happy years together!


David and Melissa said...

Well said, my friend!

Arrin said...

Love the insightful message! Thanks for sharing.