The wedding. Our wedding. THE moment that I had SO prayed for since falling in love with him…to become “Mrs. TJ Bragwell” was here. I was standing across from this radiating beam of love and truth and honesty and humility confessing to God, me, and everyone in the room that he would be my husband until death parts us. The words that just flowed from his mouth were perfect. Nothing short of perfect. The whole thing…perfect. And once we were finished professing this make you wanna gag vow session – hahahaaa – our preacher uttered some of the WISEST advice I have ever received…
“What goes on in your marriage should stay within your marriage. Be careful with the private matters you share outside of your marriage.”
Yeah yeah preacher…we are 24 year old “know it alls” and we are just dying for you to get to the part where we are pronounced “husband and wife” right?! So, he does. We kiss. We are introduced as “Mr. and Mrs. TJ Bragwell” and down the aisle we RUN.
Fast forward 15 years, 2 kids, moving twice, job changes, family, and ALL that is life later…
Those wise words projected from our preacher’s mouth truly stuck. It wasn’t long after life began as husband and wife that we were proven to that THIS is just spot on. And here’s the sentiment that follows the advice:
TJ and I can have a “knock down drag out” (as my sweet mother calls it) and just be totally and completely ON FIRE mad. I call my best friend and unload on her all that makes TJ just the worst. Tell her everything he said in anger and what I smart mouthed back -in which case I am really good at (prayers for me please lol)- and what does that leave her with? I mean, TJ comes home from work and simply runs his finger up the middle of my foot, smiles and me and says “I’m sorry baby,” and it’s totally over. Forgotten. Done. I don’t even remember what we were fighting for honey. We kiss and go on about our fairytale way. But…the BFF is left with an impression. She doesn’t know the intimate love and forgiveness side of us. She won’t get the “I’m sorry baby” that I will. He won’t smile that gorgeous smile that only TJ has at her. She is left with the memory. The visual. The knowledge of how mean he was/I was. So, this done over a period of time will cause hard and unforgettable feelings toward my husband/our relationship. See that?!!
People are curious by nature. Some people genuinely care. Most people are just hungry for that ONE story. That one spat or fight or argument or angered moment. They are looking for that piece of information that will prove to them that you are not as happy as you claim. And simply because of the age old theory “misery loves company.” So when you give a person an insight into your angered moments…your spats…your heat of the moment disagreements…you are giving them a reason to look at your relationship/marriage in a way that will not be productive. They will form opinions. They will spread these opinions. You can/will forgive and forget even why you were mad…they will not. They cannot. At no fault of their own. It’s yours/mine.
Now when you have that person/those people who truly love you and care for you and are that ear of concern, wisdom, compassion, and trust…use them. I have a couple of those. And I do NOT ever want to know what my life would be like without them. And I am that for them. I listen, without judgment or contempt. I offer help, they return that. And those relationships you just CANNOT beat. When you can know very intimate and ugly and disgusting info and want nothing more than to just listen, cry with, and love that person and her relationship in simple heart felt love…THAT is a true companion. Keep her…be her.
So, “Be careful who you open up to. Only a few people actually care. The rest are just curious.” Is my BEST ADVICE #6. I know I haven’t given #1-5…this was just where I started and it gets #6 because I’m sure there are 5 better. Lol.