And don’t be wishing you were
Some place else or with someone else. Where you are right now is God’s place for you. Live and obey and love and believe right there.
I Corinthians 7:17
Back in my day the Righteous Brother’s classic “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin'” was hot stuff. Have a listen as a prelude to this week’s Nugget: http://en.musicplayon.com/play?v=448054.
This is one of my all-time great rock anthems…but I also suspect this resonates because every married person can identify with it’s message: “Bring back that lovin’ feelin’.” Don’t you just remember the feeling of ecstatic love you had when you first found that ONE who looked good, smelled good, sounded good, felt good and tasted good? “The honeymoon always ends,” as the saying goes. “The bloom of romance always fades.” How many of you have not felt that way and then learned how to fake it because you thought you were the only one to ever experience this. Have you never come to the place where you looked at your spouse and said, “You’re not Mr./Ms. Right, just Mr./Ms. Right NOW. If I’d just made a better choice, it would be different. It happens to all of us. Do you know why? I’ll answer my own question. Because each of us constructs an idealized image of the person we marry. The image is planted by our partner’s eager efforts to put their best foot forward, but it takes root in the rich soil of our romantic fantasies. We want to believe we are marrying the perfect person. As Emerson Eggrichs says, “Expectations are Nothing More than Pre-meditated Resentments.”
But it’s not reality. Just write it on your bathroom mirror, this phase is fleeting.
Some experts believe the half-life of romantic love is about three months, after which you have only half the amount of romantic feelings you started out with. Others believe romantic love stays at a peak for two to three years before starting to fade.
Whichever theory is correct or somewhere in between, you can take it to the bank that the enchantment of romance will always begin to fade eventually.
An attorney we know who has referred many divorce cases to us told us that the number one reason two people split up is that they “refuse to accept the fact that they are married to a human being.” In every marriage, mutual hope gives way to mutual disillusionment the moment you realize your partner is not the perfect person you thought you married. But look, they cannot ever be that. No human being can fulfill all your idealized expectations. Not even for those who clearly document their expectations and try to negotiate them in advance. A letdown is inevitable. So, is that it? Is there any hope for the ideals? Is it just about making a different choice?
But No,there is sunshine behind the dark clouds of disappointment. Once you realize that your marriage is not a source of constant romance, you can appreciate the moments of romance you do encounter and create for what they are–very special experiences. A romantic marriage is an intentional marriage. It does not HAPPEN to you, you MAKE IT HAPPEN. Let me remind you that if you want to FEEL the things romantic love feels, you must DO the things love does. (go back to the last two Nuggets on dating your spouse.) That, believe it or not, is the only way you can keep from losing “that lovin’ feelin’.”
What do you do on a routine basis to keep romance alive in your relationship, what do you want to happen and what are you willing to do to make that a reality?