Compatibility Isn’t What Makes Marriage Work

Hello, sweet people!

I originally wrote this post in 2016 — it’s crazy how drastically life has changed since then! But I’m more convinced than ever that compatibility isn’t what keeps a marriage together through the long haul. I’m also convinced this is a lesson we need to learn every year. 

I’m learning what real love is … and it’s beautiful.

There are many misconceptions about love and how best to make relationships work. One of the most deceiving and killing is the lie that compatibility is necessary for a thriving, successful love. Sadly, many friends, lovers and even church family separate when they feel a drift in their compatibility from one another.

Friends, this is wrong.

What Makes Marriage Work

When we base our vows on the typical definition of compatibility  we head down a road of disappointment. Marriages are not meant to be built on how well you compliment your spouse and how well your personalities work together.

Nothing in life is meant to be built on this.

Spouses can be annoying. You can be annoying. The traits and personality quirks you initially found cute can turn into irritants. We’re meant to rub each other raw … that’s one way God works our character.

Instead of basing a relationships value on how well you work together examine your ability to suffer together.

The original, Latin root for compatibility is compati which means to suffer with

Suddenly, being compatible isn’t as fun as before.

Sweet friend, how well do you suffer with your friends, spouse and church family? How well do you show them genuine, authentic love?

Young lovers, please don’t base your relationships on how well you compliment your significant other without asking yourself the simple question: am I willing to suffer with them? Will you suffer with them when finances get tight? Will you suffer with them when they lose all respect, when your child is dying, or when they lose a job?

Make Marriage Work

Honestly, this has been an interesting and new concept for me. I knew that Dalton and I’s relationship needed to be built on an enduring, committed love … but the idea of suffering with? Well, #tbh, that threw me off.

To avoid being overwhelmed, I took this new challenge one practical step at a time. In the past, suffering with Dalton meant being able to give a good back massage when his body ached and cheerfully keep to our budget. I knew that if you aren’t willing to suffer through the small, inconvenient moments then you’ll crumble when the hard stuff hits.

And how true that was! For us, suffering changed from minor irritants to gigantic hurdles! We endured living apart for 7 months while our son had surgery after surgery. For Dalton, suffering meant sleeping on the hospital couch for 9 weeks while I was on bed rest, not turning up the heat in the winter to save money, and driving back and forth each week so I could stay with Uriah while he was in the NICU.

Had we based our marriage on the easy moments we couldn’t have made it through the last few years. How thankful I am God carried us through that traumatic season of  life!

And it’s true for all of us — you may hit iceberg sized difficulties in the future but for now you’ve been given small opportunities to grow deeper in love.

What do you think? How have you grown in your ability to suffer with your friends, spouse or church family? Or is this an area needing strengthening? Share your heart … and let’s grow in grace together!

With love, blessings and coffee,

Frannie

Simple, Easy Ideas for Valentine’s Day for the Whole Family

“You mean more to me than anyone else in the whole wide world.”

– Peter Pan

This Valentine’s Day will be Uriah’s first at home! His first Valentines took place in the NICU — so thankful we are home and able to celebrate the holidays together (even though we do miss our nurses!).

My mom couldn’t be beat when it came to celebrating the holidays and Valentine’s Day was always made special for us children. Gift baskets would be filled with red and pink treats … little things like body soap, candies, candles, or notepads. She really has a gift for making holidays special! <3

This year, we’ll be celebrating Valentine’s Day together and I want to make it a special one for both Uriah and Dalton, my true Valentine!

Since there’s no danger of either reading this post I’ll let you in on the plan! (Real life readers … please keep my secret!) 😉

For Dalton, I will make a little gift basket with 5 coupons for a 1 hour massage by yours truly! (True love since I really stink at giving massages!). I’ll also tuck a pint of his favorite Halo Icecream, a kombucha drink, and a bar of Aldi dark chocolate. His favorites!

For Uriah, I’ll keep it simple with a little bag filled with a new teether, lavender baby lotion (since we’re out 😉 ), and a balloon tied to the side.

Simple yet meaningful gifts that won’t break the budget and will make the holiday special. What do you do for Valentine’s Day? Do you reserve gift giving for only your significant other or do you spread the love to the whole family?

Love, blessings, and a happy Valentine’s Day to you!

Frannie

Dear Husband, Thank You for Loving Me. Signed, Your Tired Wife

Parenthood is so much more than I ever imagined. The joy, exhaustion, fun, and worry take turns overwhelming mother’s heart; I never knew motherhood could be so much.

And in the midst of it is my marriage — this loving bond that gave me my motherhood in the first place. And, sweet readers, it’s this special friendship and union that needs, more than ever, dedication and attention. I now know what every married mother tried to tell me … parenting is exhausting. Mom life is an amazing privilege and with it comes great responsibility. I’m literally at the beck-and-call of every moment of every day.

Sometimes, in my exhaustion, I am too tired to think about encouraging and pursuing the husband who I love so very much.

So, dear husband, thank you for loving me.

Thank you, to all the husbands out there, who love the women who are now mothers of your brood. I know feminists will gush a hearty but of course he should help; it’s his child too. Not me. I take notice and appreciate men who are not only great fathers but great givers and lovers to tired mothers.

Thank you, husband, for finding big and little ways to make motherhood an easier transition for me. He has inspired this list because he has done each of these caring, nurturing, loving things! 🙂

5 Ways to Care for the Tired Mom in Your Life: 

  • Making us breakfast (complete with coffee!) 
  • Loving delivery pizza as much as we do (at least once a week)
  • Sending us to bed or Hobby Lobby or anywhere where we can be responsibility free for a time 
  • Giving genuine compliments when postpartum and pumping hormones have us feeling ick
  • Pursuing romance and snuggles … because we really do want to be more than just milk machines and diaper-changing lady bosses 

 To sum it up, thank you for nurturing us while we nurture your children.

Moms or future moms, take a few moments during your next coveted coffee or Netflix or bath break to come up with some ways to say thank you to the men in your lives who are doing so much. For me, blessing Dalton is as easy as offering a massage, preparing a yummy meal, and just enjoying him.

I can’t tell you how refreshed my hubby is when I take a break from being mom and simply be his friend and enjoy his company. Laugh genuinely at his jokes, listen to his stories, or pursue his heart; imagine, husbands who enjoy being enjoyed? 😉

With love, blessings, and coffee,

Frannie

5 Ways to Deal with Anger in Your Marriage

Real life means we’re going to have conflict in our relationships. How we handle it, or don’t handle it, will determine if our marriage will grow or not. Join me for a coffee break and a quick read on how to deal with anger in your marriage. Follow this link or click on the picture below.

Read more

How to Pamper Your Partner (in 5 easy steps)

Valentine’s Day is one week away so here’s a little throwback how-to for pampering your partner. Sit back with a cup of coffee, click on the link or picture, and discover 5 ways to make your loved one feel cherished!

AuthenticVirtue.com

How are you going to be celebrating the holiday? Will you celebrate single style? In a protest? Or with a spouse? Tell me your plans; I’d love to hear!

Love, blessings, and coffee,

Frannie