The ceremony was totally amazing! You had so much fun, and got to visit with all your family and friends. You might even think all the work you did, planning this shindig for a year was well worth it. Now you can sit back and relax, right? Not quite.
Now is when the real work begins. Those first feelings you had about each other that made your heart flutter, other parts of you get excited, and made you want to be with each other all the time will start to wane. But this doesn't signal an end to your happiness! In this series we'll talk about some of the ways to couples make it to their 50th wedding anniversary, even more in love than before.
Relationships, like an ocean, go through changes frequently. There will be times when you can't stand each other, and other times you'll be so grateful that your partner still puts up with you; other times when you miss each other and can't stand to be apart. So how do you ride these tides out?
First of all, understanding that the commitment you made to each other comes first. You took a vow to keep this commitment forever. It sets the foundation for all you do, and will do over the course of your life. It needs to be protected! Much like the ocean floor is protected by the depth of the water above, you need to insulate it from the superficial things that can affect its strength.
Make good decisions that don't put it at risk on a daily basis. This looks different for every couple, and so it's important that you have open conversations about what are acceptable risks for each of you, and for how long you feel comfortable accepting those risks.
For instance, one may have an opportunity to take a job that requires travel. How much time apart can you accept? For how long do you want to accept the distance between you? Are there ways to mitigate the emotional distance you may feel in addition to the physical distance when one is traveling? If you're the traveler, are there ways you can lessen the additional responsibilities at home your partner faces in your absence?
Next month - Part Two: How do you feel loved?
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Rev. Ronnie was ordained in 2010 as an interfaith minister through The New Seminary, located in New York City. She is available to perform ceremonies throughout the United States, aboard ship or in other countries.