July is here, which means that the year is half-over. I’ve received a few reminders to revisit those New Year’s Resolutions from well-meaninged friends on Twitter and motivational emails in the inbox.
“It is half-way through the year! How are those resolutions coming?”. It is an interesting idea, to think about how we’ve bettered ourselves in the last six months and recommit to change once more. Personally though, I realize I no longer set resolutions. Instead, I focus on a theme. I no longer choose that “one word” to go before me into the year but wait for a word to hit me – something I really want to focus on. And I have found that those themes tend to stick with me.
At the beginning of this year, I thought my personal year-long theme would have something to do with my marriage. I’ve been married for five years and we’ve been parents for four. We sped through our newlywed phase and went straight into the parenting phase. We missed our chance to fall into our married rhythm. When you have young children at home, you can’t help but put much of your focus on them. They require most of your energy, leaving little for your spouse. Yet, without a strong marriage foundation, the family that our kids depend on can slowly become redefined.
I’m still in the young-children phase of my life. My husband and I will be here for a while. And so, we’re going to be struggling to figure out how to prioritize each other for a while too. I really want have a strong marriage with my husband, and I’m sure this will be a goal of mine for many years to come. And while I’ve been focusing on this theme for many months now, I am not sure if I’m any further ahead. But I think like any relationship, marriage will take constant effort to keep the flame alive.
Summer is a time of weddings. It is a time to celebrate anniversaries and to watch friends and family say their vows. A priest friend of ours takes time out during every wedding to talk to couples witnessing the wedding and asks them to think about how they can recommit to one another as they watch the bride and groom do it for the first time. While the year isn’t new, there is something about summer that allows for a newness in a marriage.
Last year, while we moved into our new house, I invited bloggers to guest post about moving and home ownership. It was an encouragement to me and many of my readers. This year, I’ve decided to do a similar thing, but I’m inviting writers to consider marriage: the better and the worst of it. I’m calling the series “Writing Vows” and over the next two months, I hope it encourages and comforts. I hope it helps everyone feel less alone. I hope it pushes us to have better relationships. I hope it rekindles a spark.