Mindless Rantings on Life

Are we living in a land of confusion?  When up is down, right is wrong, good is evil; can we ever get right-side up again?  The world is a terrifying place and especially, I imagine, for those who are alone.  When you have to fall asleep by yourself, and when you awake there is no one there beside you to kiss you good morning, it must not only be scary but depressing as well, at least to me when I was single.  But more on singleness below.

Isn’t that why most people are desperate to find a mate; to not have to go through this life alone?  Don’t get me wrong, you needn’t find someone to make yourself content, or happy, but I believe it is a warm fuzzy feeling to have that strength and comfort next to you in bed.  Or is it just me?

I like being married.  Okay, maybe I wasn’t originally planning on taking this post in this direction but now I feel led to.  Maybe you are happy and satisfied with your singleness, and that’s all well and good.  Some people enjoy that status.  There isn’t any judgment here; just like for those who rather not have children.  It’s cool.  It’s your choice.  It’s the status of being a widow or widower that breaks my heart.  I’ve known people who had to live with that; the loneliness, the sadness, the void that the surviving spouse must deal with.  All I can say is:  Hold on to those beautiful memories and embrace them, cherish them.  Don’t ever forget that person you loved so completely.  And onto the divorced; some may even feel that you are better off divorced; no chains to bind you, freedom to do whatever you want, go whenever you want.  Sometimes, yes, we marry the wrong person.  They presented themselves during the dating phase to be something other than what you discovered after marrying them.  Perhaps they have some horrible addiction, are abusive, a cheater, or whatever you want to fill in the blank with. And in that case, it is wiser to escape that cage.  (Or try counseling, if both parties agree.  There is always hope for the person to turn their life around).

But stretching that thought out, I think we all present ourselves differently in the dating phase.  Don’t we all love putting our best foot forward, our happy faces on?  Normally the person we are dating doesn’t get the opportunity to see us at our worst, do they?  We wouldn’t reveal that ugly side of ourselves in fear of running them off; screaming into the night.

Yes, that would be awkward, wouldn’t it?  Does this have anything to do with writing, you may ask?  Well, not really.  Sometimes I just enjoy writing out my thoughts because I love to write.  This is my outlet.  This is my stress reliever.

And having Asperger’s, sometimes my thoughts get a little jumbled, so please forgive me.  It can seem like a rant at times, like a deranged women’s viewpoint.  But trust me; I am pretty good at being sane. So here is my post for this week.  A little flighty perhaps, but it is also my birthday as well.  And I had a desire to write something on marriage and the pluses of the institution.  I love being married.  It is all about shared experiences; both good and bad.  It is about children, if you have any, and the joys and struggles of raising them.  It is cold feet, and warm hearts; corny jokes and laughter(even if mine sounds like a mix between snorting and a percolator); and shared hopes and dreams for the future; for you and your spouse.

So with that, I bid you a pleasant weekend, and a very safe and enjoyable Labor Day.  Man, I can’t believe summer is technically over with the arrival of Labor Day.  Summer always seems to fly on by for me.  Well, love to you all, my readers.  Until next time; happy writing.

Eva

 

The Joy of a Happy Marriage

Okay. Perhaps the title is misleading. I don’t believe that any marriage is happy 100% of the time. We fight. We hurt each other. But the good thing about marriage is that you have learned to forgive your spouse after being together for as many years as you have been. For us it is now twenty-three years of marriage. And I can honestly say that our marriage is stronger now than when we first said “I do.” How is that possible? When so many marriage crumble and end up in divorce court, and children are left to wonder what they did wrong, because that’s normally what happens(well, if there are children which resulted from the union). Marriage isn’t easy. When two very different people join together for, hopefully, a lifetime, it is definitely a struggle of wills and personalities. We tend to say that we fell in love with our spouse because of the things we share in common. But even though there may be a lot of hobbies shared, or tastes in certain things, in the end, you are still two very different human beings. And take the stress of raising a family, working, paying bills, getting out from under debt, maybe an illness, and just plain old living under the same roof with perhaps limited amount of space to escape for a couple of hours, couples are in for a very bumpy ride if they don’t understand what they are getting themselves into.

Marriage is NOT playing house. There are real problems. Repairs need to be done. Maybe new appliances need to be purchased. Or you may have recently lost your job. You worry about losing your home, losing your health, losing your loved ones, losing your sanity! The stress builds up and then suddenly your lashing out at your spouse, your kids, or maybe even your neighbors. You wonder how you can hold it all together to make things work out. Especially true if you’re a man. I understand how important your work is to your sense of worth. How you may feel like less of a man if you cannot provide for your family. It is a tremendous amount of frustration piled up upon your already sagging shoulders. But I’m sure women can feel the same way. We should at least try to encourage our men. Let them know that we are in support of them 100%. That whatever happens, you’ll survive; you’ll get by. And all that matters is being together. Yes. That may sound like a cliché but it’s the truth.

In marriage, you must be on the same team, so to speak. Financial decisions must be mutual. Raising the children must be mutual. There must be an understanding on all things when it come to marriage. It is hard work making it all work out in the end. But work out it will if you both just hang on. Yes. It is much easier to quit and get divorced. But if you think it is better on the other side, you would be mistaken. Also, I am talking about marriages where there isn’t any signs of abuse. I would never tell anyone to stay in such a situation, just to make it clear this is about ‘normal’ marriages, if there is even such a creature that exists!

Now, about faith. I think that this is a very important part of a marital union. If one person is a believer, I feel that the spouse should be too, just because of the complications that can arise out of not being on the same page when it comes to faith issues. My husband and I share the same faith. We pray together every weekday morning, asking God to bless our day, for protection for ourselves and our loved ones, and thank Him for the many blessings He provides us on a daily basis. This is very important to us, as a couple. Perhaps you enjoy mediating together, or working out together, or some other hobby that you both enjoy. You both need that time to spend together, especially once you have children. Don’t let the craziness of life draw you further and further apart. You need to be unified. And, here I go, do not postpone the sex part. It is a very huge element to a happy and healthy marriage. There is nothing wrong in enjoying it whole-heartedly, ladies! I don’t care how old you are, go after it with gusto! Read up on all the great health benefits to both men and women that a healthy sex life provides. Having sex with definitely bond you two even closer together; trust me on this one.

So, do not let frustration, day to day living, and children make you resent being married. It is not greener on the other side. You will still have heartache, and anger, and pain, and grief, and bills to pay. Make it work. Get help if you need to. Be patient with each. Forgive each other. Love each other more each day. Don’t take each other for granted. Look into your spouse’s eyes and tell them each day that you love them. Give them an unexpected kiss or hug when passing by them. Have fun together. Play! Tickle each other, works for us, since I’m awfully ticklish. Okay, perhaps that was too much information. Just please, love your spouse. Above all, keep an open line of communication. Talk often. Respect each other. Take interest in what your spouse enjoys doing. And give them space when they need it. So to all, I hope that you have many, many years of a happy and healthy marriage ahead of you. Perhaps you too will discover that you have fallen in love with your spouse all over again.

Being Thankful

With the Thanksgiving holiday fast approaching, I wanted to be more thankful for the things that I have.  I am so very thankful for my loving and supportive husband.  We have been together for 25 years now and it has only gotten better.  Hopefully for him too.  But I can’t speak for him.  He has made me a better person.  He makes me laugh when I have wanted to cry.  He does amazing voices that make me laugh.(Anyone need a good voice-over actor?)  He urges me to follow my dream to become a published writer.  I am so blessed and thankful for my two sons.  They are healthy, well-educated, and compassionate(well, as compassionate as two teenage boys can be).  I have a roof over my head, a functioning car, work that keeps me happy, and good health.

Now some people may not agree with me on these next ones, but that’s okay.  We all have different opinions, and well we should, but here goes.  I am thankful to all those who have served or are currently serving in the armed forces.  It’s not something they all wanted to do, I’m sure, but they did their tour of duty, or are currently in it.  I am thankful for those families who give their sons and daughters to protect this nation.  I am sure it can’t  be easy being away from their loved ones for that long.  My brother was in the army, during peace times, thankfully; and I saw first hand how difficult it was for my mother.  She was constantly worried that a war would break out and take her beloved and only son away from her.  And she gained a lot of weight due to the stress. Also, she had lost a brother to war and her father when she was still a child.

I am also thankful to all those who are firefighters and police officers.  Being constantly on call has got to be very trying on their emotional well-being and upon their families as well.  Especially with the fact that their lives are on the line whenever they are on duty.  I could never do that job.  Wondering if you’d make it back safely to your family thar night, has got to be beyond stressful.

I am grateful to my mom and dad who raised and loved me.  I saw them as overbearing many times during my teen years, but looking back I understand that they did it out of love and care.  I can now see how tough a job parenting actually is.  And it is a lifetime commitment.  It does not get any easier the older the kids get.  I repeat, it does NOT get any easier.  All you parents out there know what I mean.  But they provided me with clothing, food, shelter, schooling, all the necessities of life.

I am thankful to the few teachers in my life that I believed truly cared about the students and about teaching.  My high school English teacher, Mr. Anderson.  Thank you for taking the time to teach a rowdy bunch of fifteen and sixteen year olds.  It couldn’t have been easy.  He was a fantastic teacher.  I learned.  I advanced.  Thank you to Herr Taylor who made German class fun and a pleasure to come to.  I learned a lot and had a good time all at the same time.

Thank you to my older brother and sister for tormenting me as a child and probably making me a stronger person because of it.  Telling me that the government took out my birthday month, so now I no longer could celebrate my birthday, how cruel.  See what I had to put up with, people?  Older siblings can be so harsh.  Yes.  I love them still and I know that they love me too, their little baby sister.  Though my brother told the doctor a few weeks after I was born that he wanted to send me back because I was no longer wanted.  Imagine, a five year old not wanting his sweet, adorable little sister?  Never mind that I was a pooping, crying, hardly-sleeping, burping machine.  But, hey, I was cute!

So, let’s remember to be thankful, always, to those who love us, and for those who put their lives on the line for us on a daily basis.  Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.  What are you thankful for?

Being Grateful

Looking back upon my 48 years of life thus far, there are so many things that I am grateful for.  My husband is my best friend.  We met after I placed an ad in a Chicago newspaper back in 1987.  He was one of my replies.  It’s a funny story how we met.  My husband had something that he was looking forward to on 8-7-87, calling it ‘Destiny Day’.  He told his mom that something big was going to happen that day that would change the rest of his life.  Wow, was he in for a surprise!

I, on the other hand, had dated someone about a year previously who had passed away in September 1986.  This man, unfortunately, was an alcoholic, and only 23 at time of his death.  In my sorrow, though we were no longer dating at his death, I prayed that God would send me someone else that I could help, since obviously I could not help this young man. 

So as you probably have already guessed, my letter to my future husband landed snugly in his mailbox on 8-7-87, his Destiny Day.  Enclosed with the letter was a not so flattering picture of myself.  Why I enclosed that photo, I’m not sure, but my now husband said that if it weren’t for Destiny Day he wasn’t sure if he would’ve called me.  Ah, God works in mysterious ways, doesn’t He?

And I did get a chance to help my husband with an addiction he struggled with, and God healed him from that.  Though it took many years, I hung in there and my husband put up with my emotional weepy-side, and we had two sons who are both young men now. 

So, you see, I am very grateful for how the Lord worked things out for the best.  I guess I can say, “He puts us through a test, and then works things out for the best.”  Thank you, Lord, for keeping Your eye on us and providing all that we need, not just what we think we need.