Today my husband and I have been married 10 years. We met at a party neither of us really wanted to go to on the eve of my last semester at Michigan State. After hearing he was an ag engineering student, I asked him if he knew Clarence Hansen. “Professor Hansen? Yes!” “Well, he’s my grandpa.” Later in the conversation we learned that his grandmother lived only a few miles from my family cottage in a very unlikely location. A friendship quickly started from there. Without ever technically dating (at the end of the semester I moved to DC and he continued on at MSU), we decided to get married. On June 1, 2002 at the MSU Alumni Chapel, we said our vows with his family’s priest and my family’s pastor presiding.
In those ten years we’ve set-up house in Topeka, KS, partied and explored from home base in Kenner, LA, evacuated from Katrina, spent 3-years of seminary in a commuter marriage, settled in the Twin Cities and have had two wonderful, amazing kids. We’ve been through a lot (and continue to). We’ve had amazing times (and continue to). We’ve had our challenges (and continue to).
He is still my best friend, and as 12 years ago when I fully decided to take on the covenant of marriage with him, I still know that I could not do life without him.
Yet, as within this amazing blog by Leanne Penny, at 10 years we need to take stock and reinvent. It’s been on my mind for months. With two little kids, a busy and irregular weekly schedule for me, and regular, but unpredictable travel for him, maintaining sanity seems to drive our life. As faith needs to be renewed daily, so does a marriage.
We have been blessed with some amazing people in our daily lives – neighbors, friends and at our work places. I regularly reach out for support from my fellow women (wives/mothers) as they reach out to me. The women who have been through it all, now with grandchildren and/or great-grandchildren, have buried a husband or two, and have seen sorrow and joy to match their years, smile knowingly with a prayer.
Marriage is not to be taken lightly, but in the craziness of living in this culture, I have learned that it can quickly become another commodity.
Marriage is a gift, a calling, and blessing from God. An opportunity in which we can live and grow with someone, be loved and cherished, have a “home” with, and find strength for the journey. In the past few months I have really learned what it means to put God first above all else, but without my husband, without this covenant, I would not be able to navigate this life. This marriage is a very important means in which God has reached out His hand to me.
God, thank you for Nick! Amen.