|Photo by Patricia Lyons–can you tell I’m slightly obsessed with her?|
Okay, we’ve finally reached day three of our mini-marriage series. The third tip I’ve learned over the past three isn’t necessarily life changing, but it was something that I personally needed to learn as our marriage continued.
3. Your husband is not your girlfriend.
That’s right, not only is your husband not your god, but he’s also not your girlfriend. This may sound pretty obvious to some of you, but coming from a family with four daughters and only one son and then six years of living with the most incredible group of girls in college and post-college, living with a boy took some adjusting.
It took me a while to learn that my sweet husband didn’t really want to watch Gossip Girl, The Bachelor, or Grey’s Anatomy; solely live off popcorn and ice cream for dinner; discuss the latest celebrity gossip of the day; or have in-depth conversations about whether or not our dating friends would get married—you know, all the really deep stuff!
There was one point where I was trying to make him do something really ridiculous… I can’t remember what it was exactly, but I think it was centered around either trying to fill out a scorecard for Miss America or rate Oscar dresses on the red carpet and he looked at me and sweetly said, “Elizabeth, I’m not your girlfriend.” He was completely right. He’s my husband, not my girlfriend—that’s what my girlfriends are for!
Just because you’re married, doesn’t mean that you have to do everything together, find a few things you love to enjoy together—for us it’s cooking, tennis, hunkering down for a TV marathon, playing cards, skiing, and going on walks with Neely. But also be sure to make time to do the things you love as well—Bernie loves hunting, fishing, and concerts and I love bargain shopping, power walking, and girly TV and movies. I had to learn that even though we’re married, it’s okay for us to still do the things we love with other people who enjoy them too!
That night also made me increasingly aware of my need to continue to invest in the fabulous women God placed in my life. I was looking to Bernie to be my husband, but also fill the void in my heart for female companions. Just because you’re married doesn’t mean all of your other relationships have to disappear. There is still a major place in my heart that needs to be nurtured and encouraged by my sweet girlfriends, whether we’re watching The Real Housewives, or on an intense power walk as we share life’s challenges and discuss our faith. There’s room for all of it!