Posted by: Leigh Reynolds | June 1, 2011

I DO

June 1st, 1996… The day I got married. Hard to believe it has been 15 years.  To be honest, some days it feels like 50, then others it seems like I was that younger, thinner, more naive bride just a few weeks ago. A lot has happened in 15 years… A LOT. For those that really know us, that is an understatement. Yet, somehow we survive. Not because we’re lucky, not because we’re living some charmed life, and not because we haven’t faced hardship. We have; we do. We just choose to stick it out.

Those two very small words – I DO – carry a very big meaning and, in my book, a very big commitment. It’s not “Maybe”, or “if things go well; how I have them planned in my head”, or “as long as it’s not too difficult.” It’s I DO. I promise to stick it out through it all – good, bad, healthy, sick, rich, poor – to love and cherish. And that is not easy.

Patrick and I have messed things up a bunch of times, and I’d be lying if I said calling it quits was never considered. But I am amazingly stubborn. I’d love to say it’s some great sense of devotion that keeps us together, or that our love is just that amazing, but it’s really not. I just refuse to give up, and so does he. I refuse to fail, refuse to be a single mom or put my kids through a divorce, refuse to settle for a lack-luster marriage, refuse to spend my life with some thing – or someone – less. And so does he. So we work at it. Some days, he does the heavy lifting, and sometimes I do. On our best days, we share the load.

Love is a choice. I choose to love every day – and some days it is harder than others. I choose to push when we need pushing and relax when I need to back off. (Though all too often I get those backwards!) I choose to focus on the best parts of our life together, and let go of some of our weakest moments. I choose to pray for strength and patience and kindness and forgiveness and empathy and grace. I pray to see him through God’s eyes, because mine can be so off focus sometimes. I work hard to focus on his strengths and his growth and his best moments, rather than on his weak ones. I am thankful when he does the same for me. Nothing everlasting ever happened over night.

Not every day is a cake-walk. Not every moment is full of hearts and flowers and happiness, but our life is full of joy. We made a commitment before God and a promise to our children, long before they were born.  We are blessed beyond measure and we are rewarded for sticking it out and choosing to honor those two little words, “I DO.”

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Responses

  1. Leigh, your mother turned me on to your blog and I would like to carry a link to it from the home page of sullivansfarms.net. I would identify you by name and Kansas Ciy, MO. Take a look at the site and see if this would be okay with you. You write very well. Great to see the 3 of you. Love to all and to my cuz if you’re still with her. Tell her, like your dad, I’m never eating fried shrimp again.

    • I would be honored for you to link to my blog! Thanks so much! Glad you had a good visit with mom. Take care!


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