My Grandfather used to say: “When you are dating someone, treat them like you are married to them and when you marry them, treat them like you are dating.”
This morsel of wisdom is valuable to men and women alike because we all need a reminder. It’s similar to another quote that I’ve heard, but can’t quite remember whether it was a pastor or a comedian that said it. They were describing the differences between men and women at the time, and the speaker said “Women tend to marry men hoping that they will change, and men tend to marry women hoping that they won’t change.” How true it seems that after the nuptials are completed it feels like our spouse went into a booth somewhere and changed into…well, not quite a superhero…but was it them that changed or was it us?
During the dating and engagement period you have to bring your A-Game, especially if your goal is to make it to marriage with the one you want. So you make the adjustments; you hit the gym to keep the body looking great, you give them consideration in your decisions, or simply make the effort to create those “wow” romantic moments that they will always remember. Inevitably, once the bliss of the honeymoon is over and a certain level of comfort sets in, those efforts can start to diminish or disappear altogether.
The obvious intention of my grandfather’s comment is to remind us that marriage is not a finished product; it is a continual work in progress. Moreover, it isn’t just the romantic moments that are important, but we should invest in the longevity of the relationship, from the beginning, to ensure that there is a stable foundation set and our partner builds confidence in our intentions. Equally important, is that we fight off the temptation of complacency and keep the excitement and spice in our marriage. We should be just as interested in keeping our spouses as we were in winning their love to begin with.
The great thing about writing this blog is the opportunity to be reminded of the simple truths that my grandfather’s words provide. As I considered this particular post, I challenged the man in my mirror to put action to my words. So as my wife attended to a get together with some of her work friends, I took the opportunity to put some “wow” in our weekend. It only took a little creativity and less than $40 to create a memorable occasion where rose petals, candles and soft music helped me remind her that she is still very much deserving of the chase. The surprise in her eyes was priceless; the memories still the subject of her conversations and a deposit for me in the romantic bank of her heart. So, here is the same reminder to you…let’s see what you can do with it. Be Blessed.