Marriage — a Labor of Love!
I attended five weddings this past year, all lovely and teary! As I listened to the couple exchange vows, I nodded in agreement.
On May 22,1971, my husband and I stood before our pastor, family, and friends and made those familiar wedding vows. “… To love and to cherish; in sickness and in health; for richer, for poorer; for better, for worse until death do us part. …” My eyes flowed with salty tears of nervous joy. Oh yes, I was a ready bride. Yet later — doing life — the weight of those vows would reveal that I was not prepared to be a wife!
If I could meet with each engaged couple, I would pose a few questions. …
To love and to cherish. Will you still love when those feelings of love dissipate? In sickness and in health. When he is not feeling well, do you dismiss his sickness as not being sick enough to warrant sympathy and tell him to ”man up?” I have chores to complete and children to care for! Perhaps she is unable to bear children. Would you blame her and leave or just endure the marriage? For richer, for poorer. He lost his job, your dream home is in foreclosure, and now you must move away from family for employment. Is there empathy in your voice and behavior? For better, for worse. When life is tough and challenging, do I respect him or kick him when he’s down and out? Is divorce an option?
Those 40-year-old vows still stand the test of time. As we age with aches and pains, “retirement” looming, and age-related body changes, I must say that my commitment to my husband and those vows are buried in my heart. Marriage is a labor of deep, committed love. I made a vow “until death do us part!”