Thursday, February 7, 2013

Doing What's Right For You

This year will make five years of marriage for me and Ash. In the grand scheme of life, it may seem like a drop in the bucket. But, for us, it has been a long, and at times, harrowing five years. We've put our vows to the test--in fact, that was part of my story when this blog started. My profile initially said " I am a 30 year old southerner turned New Yorker who was married a year ago. We tested the "for richer/for poorer" part of our vows almost immediately (I lost my job about 6 months into our marriage)." Fast forward five years and we've tested "in sickness and in health," "in good times and bad," etc., etc., etc.

Through all of that, we've gained a new perspective on what really matters in life. "Family first" is a mantra of ours. When we got married, we were a little more focused on our careers than we were on our partnership. Sure, we loved each other but we were focused more on trying to make it in this big scary world than we were on cultivating our relationship. We knew we loved each other, didn't want to be with anyone else and wanted to create a family together. But, we also wanted to run the rat race in NYC and reach our then idea of success.

Then, life happened and we had to make each other more of a priority. We had to learn to console each other through failures, to accept that we need each other (that was more me learning to release control when I got sick and couldn't do things on my own), to make dedicated time for each other (date night), and to ferociously support each other's goals and dreams.

I think I was in the hospital feeling sorry for myself when I had a revelation about us renewing our vows. I was realizing how fragile and short life can be as a parade of nurses and doctors came and went. Ash was trying very hard to sleep in an uncomfortable chair and then on the floor so I wouldn't have to be there alone. I had one of those "who would've thought this would be my life" moments and started thinking about our marriage. First, I never thought I would be married but to be married to a man who has stepped up to the plate to deal with every curveball--well, suffice it to say, I felt blessed (and, I'll admit, a little teary).

We talk a lot about how much we've grown and how different our vows would be today. Heck, how different the feelings would be today. Turns out God didn't have a perfect "first comes love, then comes marriage, then comes baby in the baby carriage" life planned for us, but, my goodness has He given us a crazy, wonderful, emotional, growth-filled, blessed, cathartic five years. So, for us, it's time for a vow renewal.

Why is this post titled, "Doing What's Right For You?" Because people have mixed reactions to our decision. Some think vow renewal is a curse and divorce is imminent. Some think it's too soon. Some think it's silly. Some (those who truly love us) say "do what's right for you." So, we are. Just us, a tropical climate, our new vows and our love for each other. And then, we're gonna party because, well, you only live once and that's just who we are.

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