For Better or For Worse
[The views expressed in this post are my opinion].
These 5 little words most say to one another on their wedding day. Yet, when these words are said they are usually said by two people in the prime of their lives, healthy, looking forward to the future and all the joy and happiness promised in a marriage.
Who thinks about the worse?
Who on their wedding day says these words with thoughts of loss, illness, financial struggle, and all the possible challenges one can face in a marriage? When I married Rogan almost 11 years ago I was not thinking about any of these. I never imagined my marriage being tested in the ways it has been – losing a child, making hard decisions about my career and motherhood, raising three young kids who are loved dearly, but are hard work - to now watching my mom battle ALS and not being able to control any part of that or provide any ease to her suffering.
Worse is watching a loved one die. Worse is watching another loved one lose someone very dear. Worse is bearing a burden of commitment when at times it would just be so much easier to run away. But love is strong and love is truly tested in such times – which is why we say “For Better or For Worse.”
We all want the better to be more prominent. We all want the joy and love to be more significant. But if there’s anything I’ve learned at this point in my life, it is that love grows infinitely during the hardest of times. And if you are lucky the strength of this love carries you to the next chapter and sometimes gives a marriage added fuel to go on, stronger than before.
Then at some point, if your marriage has lasted through these tests of time, you reach a final chapter. It’s not usually like the ending of the Notebook... and instead one person is usually left behind. Left to live with only memories. Left to feel the pain of missing their loved one. Left to question if they made the right decisions, if they did the very best for their spouse. No one pictures this moment on their wedding day (…and I’m not suggesting one should).
What I am saying though is this:
These words will likely carry more weight than you realize and the test of the worse will likely come to all marriages and all relationships without warning. It is in these times that you may want to give up, you may feel the worse is too much to bear - but if you can find a way to see this trial as a way to grow together and conquer the fears and struggles, and the pain & suffering that come with the worse, then you will find a love on the other side truer, more earned, and more profound than ever before.
And when it is your last chapter in your marriage, hold strong and hold tightly on to one another, and know that real LOVE never dies.
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