Not Perfect - Making Marriage Look AND Feel Good

Who believes in a perfect marriage? Not me. Who believes in love forever? I know I want to. Sometime ago I went on twitter and in my mentions, someone had tweeted, : "I love what Myne Whitman and her Atala share. Fun, christian, romantic marriage."  Of course, it created a warm place in my heart when I read it. Still...still... I can't let my head swell.

When celebrities you like, and who have been together 14 years split, it makes you think and keeps your feet on the ground. Johnny Depp is a favorite and since I knew him, he's been with Vanessa Paradis. They have two children, and have lived all over the world. What could have happened? I'm not even going to guess. I hear they did try to remain together but it just wasn't working.

Recently too, Pastor Chris Okotie announced he was splitting with his wife of four years, with the following words, “Stephanie and I are no longer married. We have separated. You can see she’s not in church today. It’s due to irreconcilable differences and you should please respect our wishes at this time because there is no going back.” This would be his second divorce.

Who remembers this post I made on what makes a woman a good wife?

It went viral almost instantly and continues to be one of the most popular and searched posts on my blog. And the search terms show that lot of women do indeed want to know how to be the perfect or good wife to their husbands. And that is as it should be, we all want to be happy and enjoy a great marriage. We all want to have and to hold, to love and cherish, and all the good stuff. But marriage is rarely a walk in the park, and never a fairytale.

Don't get me wrong, Atala and I are happy. What we are not, is perfect.

We're just ordinary people, and we make mistakes just like all human beings do. Our marriage is not perfect. Like my wifehood, it is a work in progress. Don't be too carried away by the pictures of our vacation trips, and how we try to get out and about to keep active. I couldn't possibly take a picture of us having a disagreement now, can I? :)

Seriously though, we do not quarrel much. One reason I think is that we're very well suited in our temperaments, none of us is very volatile. And while we can be passionate when having celebral debates, we work to be solicitous of the other's feelings when it is a personal disagreement. That is a benefit of marrying someone you care for and love deeply.

It makes it easier to keep sight of them when annoyances, big or small, explode in front of you. As they will.

What I keep at the back of my mind is how petty some of these irritations are. Like the other day, I wasn't hungry and Atala had to make his dinner. There were a couple of soups left out, a single and a double pack. It pinched the compulsive in me when I went into the kitchen later and realized he heated up the double pack instead of the single, and then had leftovers. I took a deep breath, counted to three and helped him clear up, LOL...

What I know also helps us is that we intentionally make time to spend together. And we do enjoy each other's company. Luckily we share the same interests and can do a lot of the activities together, like writing, movies, walking, travelling, coding, reading, etc.

On those days when one of us is in sour mood independent of the other, we either try to coax each other by chatting and laughing, or we simply give them room to sort out their mindspace. This is because sometimes, your partner's state of mind is not about you or the marriage. This is why I shake my head at those who get married thinking it will automatically guarantee them happiness.

If you think it's that easy, forget about it. Marriage, maybe even more than most other relationships, requires a lot of work. And I think it is imperative to have a solid base of compatibilty and love to start you off right and sustain you in the dry periods. I listed some steps to a successful relationship in a previous post, and these are the same I also work with.

- Always be honest, be open, and be truthful
- Try your best to be reliable and show appreciation
- Trust each other
- Communicate, and communicate some more
- It is imperative to respect each other

Who else has other tips on how to make marriage look good AND feel good too? And how can couples keep away from splitsville?