Posted by Erin Wilson On Thursday, June 16, 2011 1 comments
I've been working on a little father's day present for Milo this week and I have been reminded of something I used to feel a lot when we first got married. I guess the busyness of life and kids have gotten in the way in recent years. I was reminded yesterday how serving your husband and doing something special for him evokes and stirs up feelings of love. It caught me off guard yesterday as the girls and I were working on his gift to notice the giddy butterflies I was feeling in my stomach. I don't know how to describe it but I think you know that excited "lovey" feeling you felt when you were young and there was a boy you liked! The way I used to feel all the time when Milo and I first met!

Milo and I have been married for 9.5 years this month and I'm so glad I still get those feelings for him. I've learned something really important this year though about those feelings. It's not always his responsibility to evoke those feelings in me. Many times it's up to me to allow myself to feel and see how much I love my husband. Let me explain a little.

This past year and a half as we have been grieving the loss of our son has been difficult on our marriage. Thankfully because of our solid foundation it has not been as difficult as it could have been, but it's still been hard at times. There have not been excessive arguments or disagreements. It happened in the silence. It was in the distance I let happen. Milo and I have always been very close, best friends, we do everything together. I've never been a huge fan of girls night out because I love being with Milo. We enjoy doing many of the same things, with the exception of tweeting!

So for the first time in our married life when Josiah was alive we HAD to do things separately. Milo had to continue his job and live part time in Greenville while I was living in Charleston. Three to four days a week we were apart and we began to have separate lives. He had his work and friends back in Greenville and I had this new group of friends and my "work" at the hospital in Charleston. What snuck up on me (and didn't realize for months after Josiah passed) was how much I let myself become disinterested in his world. I quit asking him about work and the church, about what he did while he was apart from us.

After Josiah died we began on a new journey that we did separately, grief. Grief is so personal and no two persons, no matter how close they are, grieve alike. So what again snuck up on me was how I allowed the distance to grow between us. I will say that Milo tried very hard to stay close to me and it was me that created the distance. I had found an independence in Charleston that I liked (to some extent) and so when our lives got physically put back together in Greenville, after Josiah's death, I kept my emotional independence. The toll that took on our marriage was hard. I quit caring about the things Milo was interested in, which led to me finding the things he talked about annoying, which led to me just seeing the negative in my husband and not enjoying him. When people complimented him I would think in my head, "yeah, but…" It took me more than 6 months to realize what I was doing and that it was my fault that our relationship felt so strained. I realized that while I would always love Milo at that point I was not feeling "in love" with him. And I could see I had two options. Let things keep going the way they were going and let the distance continue thinking it was up to him to make me feel in love with him or turn myself around and walk back towards him. It took me several weeks to process that in my head and make a decision. Finally, I approached Milo with all of this. I hurt him, as he had no idea I was feeling this way, but I kept reassuring him that me having this conversation with him was me deciding to walk back towards him. It was a difficult conversation. But from that day on things began to change. My first step was to quit looking at the negatives and search for the positives. It was a choice and it was work, not because my husband has a lot of negatives (he is a wonderful husband) but because I had closed my eyes to all the positives for so long. The awesome thing is that while in the beginning it was hard, very soon it became easy and natural. The second thing was to become re-interested in the things he was interested in. I needed to ask him about work and LISTEN to his answer. I needed to go for a bike ride with him, even if he took me up the biggest, steepest mountain in all of Greenville county. And the third was to go out of my way to serve him or to do nice things for him. That goes back to where this whole post started from (WOW, I was not intending on sharing all this!). It felt so good to do something special for Milo this week and it reminded me of where we were a few months ago. I'm so glad not to be there anymore. But I was reminded again that a marriage requires intentional work and at times it requires more intentionality than others. I love my husband and I am so "in love" with him! He is an absolutely wonderful man, husband, and father. I thank God for putting the two of us together.

1 comments to Marriage

  1. says:

    Anonymous I can so relate. Thank you for sharing's nice to know I am not alone. I am so thankful that we are both grounded in faith in God and trust Him with our marriages!
    Thinking of you often! ~Rebecca Butcher

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