This post was inspired by mystery thriller novel The Expats by Chris Pavone. Kate Moore sheds happily sheds her old life become a stay at home mom when her husband takes a job in Europe. As she attempts to reinvent herself, she ends up chasing her evasive husband's secrets. Join From Left to Write on January 22 as we discuss The Expats As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.
My husband and I are fast approaching 14 years of marriage. Ten of them have been in the company of our delightful offspring.
I'd say that three of the biggest reasons we're still happily married are:
1. We're best friends. We've been best friends for close to two decades now. One of the biggest advantages of marrying your best friend is that you have a lot of the same interests, similar sense of humor-- to be honest, there are times friendship will get us through things love by itself cannot.
2. We grow together. No, I'm not saying we do everything together (Thank goodness!). But I am saying that we support each other in our major life changes and goals-- he for me while I completed my Bachelor's degree and pursue my art, and I for he while he's working towards doing the same (...the degree, not the art). If it really matters to your best friend, your spouse, your significant other-- then it should also matter to you: We're each other's biggest fans.
and 3. We're honest with each other. I've always hated Jim Carrey's "Liar, Liar" because it took the character forever to recognize that honestly doesn't have to be brutal. It's this last one that causes so much trouble for our book characters above.
The other day, we were sitting as a family watching a show when this commercial came on:
Yes, it's funny. It's cute. But when we got to the end, Mark looked at me and I looked at him and my seven year old chimed in, "You guys would be more like, "Tell your Mom what we did today!" or "Tell your Dad what he missed on our adventure!" And my ten year old followed up with, "Then you'd say, "You should come with us next time!""
And my kids pegged it. The fantastic, epic wonderful things should be something we all get to do together.
And even the crummy stuff shouldn't be hidden. Though I could be biased. I lean towards pathologically honest (without 'Liar, Liar's lack of tact).
So I'll leave you with one of my favorite quotes from Little House on the Prairie:
“The real things haven't changed. It is still best to be honest and truthful; to make the most of what we have; to be happy with simple pleasures; and have courage when things go wrong.”
― Laura Ingalls Wilder
...and in restrospect, those are pretty good 'Not So Secrets' to a happy Marriage as well.