I’ve been thinking about marriage a lot lately. Marriage can be tricky and fulfilling. Bringing two people together when they are young and expecting them to handle all life throws at them while becoming stronger and deeper in love is a big expectation. Growing individually is a lot of work, growing together requires careful thought and skill.
Ben and I have been married for 12 years and while I don’t need to tell you that we aren’t perfect (it goes without saying) and I don’t need to go into detail about all the things we argue about, I believe our biggest strength comes from believing in each other.
I know how brilliant he is and he knows how strong I am. We believe in each other. Because of that belief we help each other shoot for the stars when it comes to dreams. We give each other the freedom and encouragement to chase our dreams knowing how capable we are of reaching them. I know the sky is the limit for Ben. I believe there is nothing he can’t do. I believe that and it’s important for him to know that I believe it.
So while we navigate marriage, parenthood, careers, chasing dreams and life in general, we do it knowing that we each have our own biggest fan in each other. Life is hard. Marriage is hard. Being a parent is hard. Chasing your dreams is hard. Everything worth while is hard. So while you navigate all the hard things I hope you have a partner who believes in you and I hope you believe in your partner.
Thank you Ben for believing in me, knowing just how strong I am and allowing me to spread my wings and fly.
I’ve met people I don’t mesh with. People who I don’t have much in common with and people who I don’t feel happy around. But even with those people I’ve never met a person where, after hearing her story, that my heart didn’t change toward her. Sometimes we just need to give people a second chance at understanding each other.
Take my friend Hollee, for instance. In high school, we had the same circle of friends. There were five of us in the group, and one of her best friends was also one of my best friends. But Hollee and I didn’t get along.
She was the cute girl, confident, wore makeup, had boyfriends, and I was the shy one who didn’t understand fashion or makeup and had very little self-esteem. We were different and never gave each other a proper chance because we were superficial and judgemental.
During those high school years Hollee said some mean things to me, and I said some mean things to her. I simply didn’t like her and she did not like me. When Facebook came around we ended up friending each other on social media. (Remember we weren’t enemies just not fans of each other.) Whenever we’d comment on the same post as friends of friends, I would have a sour taste in my mouth. The negative feelings between us would show up all over again.
Out of the blue, Hollee reached out. She sent me a Facebook message, apologizing for being a brat in high school and for treating me badly. “I’m really really sorry,” she said.
Her message of apology meant a lot to me. I responded back to her message with thanks and that was it for several years.
Then I moved from Virginia to Utah. I needed someone to do my hair, Hollee was a cosmetologist and she lived near my new house, so I called her up. I was willing to trust her because she had sent me that contrite message. I thought that she’d do my hair and we could have a pleasant relationship.
But things changed after that appointment. I went in, she did my hair, and we connected. It turns out, we’re actually a lot alike. As she shared her story and I shared mine, we clicked. It’s been almost 5 years now that we’ve been besties.
We, who disliked each other for so many years, have now been able to share some of our hardest times and some of our greatest heights together. She knows the worst of me and my life and the best. We have a really deep friendship. I love Hollee. She is a genuinely good person who treats others with love and acceptance. She likes to have fun, she gives good advice and she listens with her heart. I feel blessed to have her in my life.
I’ve thought about our story a lot. All the superficiality from high school has melted off and we’ve ended up in a really beautiful friendship that has blessed both of our lives. If we had just written each other off, we’d have missed out on this friendship. We’d never have known how good of friends we would become.
I think the life lesson is: We shouldn’t write somebody off as not worth knowing. Don’t judge others. Just don’t do it! Instead listen to each others stories. Once you hear a person’s story the judgment melts away and there is only room for love. Who knows maybe there is someone in your past that could be your future bf?!