My junior year of college I sat in a communication studies class in St. Robert's Hall at Loyola Marymount University. As we began to discuss the topic of marriage and divorce, our professor asked us a question:
"Do you think your first marriage will last forever?"
Well, attending a Christian university, I thought that was a very silly question for her to ask. Of course, my first marriage would last forever. And if it started to go in the wrong direction, obviously we were going to make it work in the end. That is what I grew up with and "divorce" was a word I never heard my parents say. My husband and I now refer to it as "the D word" - a word that is not appropriate for our vocabulary.
As we went around the room and discussed our opinion on the matter, I had no idea where this was going. Why would anyone not believe in one single marriage?
But to my surprise, as we made our way around the 25-person class, I could count on one hand the number of classmates that believed they would stay married to the same person for the entirety of their life, death aside. You mean to tell me that only 4 of us believed our first marriage was going to be our last??
We live in a society that no longer values one single marriage. We all value weddings, but clearly there is not enough emphasis put on the marriage part. Yes, we all want our beautiful Pinterest weddings but is this what really matters? Yes, I am a wedding blogger so OF COURSE I believe in the importance of celebrating such an amazing day in your life but today, I just wanted to take a second to step away from weddings and talk about LOVE. No, I am not an expert at all, just a girl who has experienced love and truly believes in the power of love.
Earlier today, I posted this photo on Instagram:
And in the first 2 hours, I got over 200 likes. That is more than I usually get on a photo so clearly, deep down, we all value marriage and staying true to our one love for the rest of our lives. So this really got me to thinking why so many of us decide to take the easy way out and just divorce that person who we, at one point, could not live without. Clearly, if he got down on one knee (let alone how much he spent on that ring for you!), and you said, "YES", and you both said "I Do" then there must be some reason you still love your spouse...right?
My husband and I say "I love You" each and every day - we say it before he leaves for work, we say it when he gets home from work, we say it after our prayer together before dinner, we say it each and every time we hang up the phone, we say it before we go to bed...and after all of this, it feels as though we are just going through the movement. You are supposed to say "I Love You" to your loved ones throughout the day "just in case something may happen to him or her, those would be your last words," as I was taught growing up.
So in order to make the phrase, "I love you" more meaningful in my own marriage, I began writing down 365 reasons why I love my husband. I was on a roll until I got to 277...
And then I was stumped! It is much harder than you think but just 10 seconds later, my mind began to think of more and more reasons, faster than I could type them out, all the way to 365.
And this is what I learned from my experience:
If you can find 365 things you love about your spouse, then there is no reason to ever question if you should be together.
My Challenge To You:
Choose one person you love - a spouse, a fiance, a boyfriend or girlfriend, a daughter, a son, a mother or father, a grandparent, a friend...anyone who you love.
Next you are going to write a list - 365 reasons you love that person.
Once your list is complete, you can give it to them at the start of 2014:
- Give them a box full of your reasons
- Text or verbally tell them
- Give them the list
- Publish your list online
(I can do this for you and provide you with a unique URL that only he/she can see!)
Let your loved one know the he or she can open one a day, read them all at once, or just open up that personal web link whenever they need a little encouragement.
In the end, my hope is to spread a movement to keep relationships together and to make relationships stronger, in a very simple way. So I encourage you all to post the "365 Days of Love" logo on your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or on your refrigerator or mirror at home, reminding you and inspiring you to tell your loved ones just one thing you love about them, each and every day.