I have to remind myself on occasion that being married is a vocation, a calling, a gift, a profession of sorts. As such, it requires a lot of dedication. 10 years ago, God blessed me with an instant family when I married a single dad with three boys. The last 10 years were packed with activities, sleepovers, homework and you know the rest. Within just a few years, my stepsons were driving and generally, able to care for themselves so my personal life never really suffered. My husband never asked me to sacrifice activities or hobbies that I enjoyed, even when they meant time away from him many weeknights and weekends.
Now, we are empty nesters. We’ve just moved to a new town. I’ve realized how much I’ve neglected our marriage and I’m determined to remedy that. Reading books on love, sex and marriage has given me lots of ideas but admittedly, I’m still so focused on getting unpacked and organized that I haven’t really been able to implement many changes. However, after reading “The Five Love Languages” by Gary Chapman, I learned that “quality time” is his major love language, where it is a low priority on mine. That discovery led to the following:
1. spend more time in the same room. Instead of going off to my study for hours, I can take my laptop to the room in which he is sitting and work there.
2. Go to bed earlier. Don’t read in bed or work on computer in bed.
3. Go for walks together.
4. Eat dinner together.
5. Travel together. This has taken some organization but appears to be working. We hire a house sitter for the animals when he has to travel out-of-town and I go with him, usually at least 2 nights a week.
It’s been an adjustment but not really difficult. We enjoy spending time together. I’m ashamed that for the last 10 years, I haven’t made spending time with him a higher priority. The real test will be finding activities in which we can participate together. Suggestions welcomed!