I am a true believer that with marriage, we must have a foundation that the relationship sits on. We are the creators of this imaginary foundation, and are given the controls to strengthen or weaken it.
Within our foundation lie hundreds of tiny bricks which are laid, one brick at a time. Each brick represents a feeling, an emotion, an idea, commitment, love, respect, faith, hope, trust, wisdom, patience, admiration, boundaries, partnership, friendship, lovers, children, career, guidance, balance, strength, morals, honesty, communication, etc.
However, because we have hundreds of bricks to build our foundation, we still need to have cement and tools. These items are extremely important and vital to a successful marriage, as they become the glue that keeps it altogether.
In exploring this one step further, as an example I will use the word "love." We must first define what this word means to us. How do we apply this meaning to our personal lives? How would I like to feel when I feel loved? How would I like someone else to feel when I return that love?
We must learn how to love each other. We must learn how to have patience. We must learn how to respect not only ourselves, but to respect others as well. We also must learn how to create and set our own personal boundaries.
We must be willing to accept change in our lives, and be open to criticism. This doesn't mean that what we hear, we must always accept. This merely broadens our perspective and allows us to grow internally.
Whenever we "assume" that we have all the knowledge we need, we are only kidding ourselves. A foundation cannot be built on false expectations or wishful thinking.
Foundations must be built on solid ground. Otherwise, there will be gaps or holes. And sooner or later, the SOLID foundation which we THINK we have created will begin to crack or crumble.
In other words, we must be "OPEN" to growing as individuals.
Because our lives are not always perfect, we have to expect there WILL be cracks which need repair. People do make mistakes, but it's what they learn from those mistakes that matters the most.
For us to grow internally requires the ability to admit we are not perfect. Admitting we are not perfect takes maturity. And maturity brings personal justice in accepting that whatever direction our lives take, we will be content in knowing we have satisfied our personal goals without sacrificing our morals or beliefs.
Many time there are warning signs that go unnoticed or ignored. We tend to look the other way because of our inability to "reason" with ourselves. We don't want to admit that we made a mistake or we have failed.
Failure, to me, is nothing but a stepping-stone. We can learn from our failures and teach others to do the same.
In my case, the building bricks which my ex-husband and I created were not even the same size, color, or shape. Nor did we use the same tools as our glue to keep our foundation together.
So not only did we have different opinions about what our goals were in life, we also had different tools when we put them together.
We are our own best teachers in life. We have the ability to open our hearts or close our minds.
I can't say I ever regretted marrying Greg, because I was blessed with four of the most wonderful and beautiful daughters. I feel God has a plan for me. Through my experiences and pain, I am able to help others by sharing my story. If I hadn't experienced these chapters in my life, I wouldn't be the woman I am today.
Follow my journey on Twitter @teresascreative
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