Friday, August 12, 2011

In sickness…

My husband and I have been married for almost seven years. During those seven years, the words ‘in sickness’ have found new meaning for our marriage. I regret that I have been sick, really sick, for most of our marriage. Once I was in the ICU with no feeling in my left side. I had to learn how to walk and talk all over again. As if this was not enough, now my body just aches all of the time. He has been patient with me, and very supportive during what he can. Although, I know sometimes a person’s health can impact a marriage extremely. I am very grateful that my husband has stuck through the sickness part of marriage. It can not be easy.

Understanding illness

Being sick can mean a lot of things. This can be about anything from a cold to a life-altering injury. Whatever happens to your partner it is important to understand the illness or injury. When I was sick with conversion disorder, a mental health disorder that caused the loss of feelings in my left side, the illness itself it hard to understand so explaining it to my husband was difficult. He listened to the doctors and the other family members that were helping us. Other illnesses and injuries may not be as hard to understand. Understanding the illness or injury will give you a better idea on how to help.


The best way to help your spouse is to listen. If you illness is visible or not, it is real and causes a big impact in their life. Listening actively means not judging the other person for how they feel. Listening involves great body language, and eye contact. The best way to show your spouse you are listening to have gentle physical contact, if able. Touch a knee or hold a hand. Remember that there is no right or wrong feelings for illness.

Get ready for a new normal

In the ideal illness situation, things get better. However, this may not be the case. You need to be prepared for a new normal. Realizing that you will still love your spouse and they will still love you is the best way to be prepared. Make a game plan together in case a situation arises that may have to be dealt with. Having a plan for emergencies will make your new normal easier to handle.

I am really grateful for my husband and any other married couple that has to deal with illness. In the vows, “in sickness or health” few couples think about the sickness part

Read these:

Little known signs of Vitamin B12 deficiency

Coping with Undiagnosed Illness

Friday, August 5, 2011

Surviving Marriage: The Good Stuff

Marriage is hard with many ups and downs. Even before the official “I do,” there can be lots of fighting, or utopia love. Surviving marriage starts from the wedding planning to the many years together. Each year has its own challenge. Watch for a blog series the highlights the way to survive the many stages of marriage

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

When I knew Ashley was in love with JP

Ashley Herbert, the Bachelorette, may have shocked some by her decision to accept a proposal from JP Rosenbaum, but she didn’t shock me. For weeks now, I have known she was in love with JP.

JP and Ashley have the kind of relationship many want. The signs of them falling in love were all around for quite awhile. I feel as if the show could have packed their bags weeks ago.

The meeting

The first meeting between Ashley and JP was magical. He did nothing fancy to catch her eye. He smiled away and when they alone time, Ashley could not stop giggling.  The “Cupcake” nickname brings them closer.

Coin flip

JP lost a date because of a coin flip, but gained a kiss. A coin flip made sure they kissed. This showed Ashley that JP was willing to roll with the punches. She giggled at the idea.

Love sparks

On their fist date, Ashley was distraught from Bentley leaving. JP had to endure her in a non-glamorous setting. This type of date is the type that happens in real life. This started the falling in love process. JP has to see Ashley how she is in real life. They had a great time just being with each other. Love was overflowing as JP just wanted to make sure she was ok.

Bentley comes back

When Bentley comes back to give Ashley some closer, she tells JP first. This is because she is in love with him and wants to be honest. He is just happy that she got some closure. He is right there for her during the journey, this time and many others.

His concerns

During the later part of the process, JP shows concern. He does not like seeing Ashley go out with the other guys. However, Ashley is right there the entire way telling him the process is worth it. When she turns to comfort him each time, the fact that she does not let him go, tells us she is in love with him.

I hope Ashley and JP have a long happy life together. From the first meeting to the first date, there was a lot of love going around between them.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Real Couple Wednesday (Jane Doe)

This Wednesday I had the unique experience of talking to someone that wanted to remain anonymous. Because she was granted this, she was very open with me about everything. While going through a hard spot in your marriage it is hard to open up to any outside sources. This is the reason why I do Real Couple Wednesdays. I want others to realize that you are not alone. Marriage is very hard, and sometimes it can seem too hard. Please know that when you are faced with a hurdle you can work things out. Anyway, back to the interview. As I said, our interviewee, called her Jane Doe, opened up about troubles in her marriage. I thank her very much for sharing some very personal details with me.

Tell me about yourself (Age and Martial status)

I am 31 years old.  I am just really finding myself. I have known a lot of things about myself for a long time but even at this present moment in time, I am still finding out things about me. I am married. We have been married going on 9 years next month. My husband and I only knew one another for 8 months before we got married. Most people said that we would not make it and I totally disagreed with them up until a few months I am not so sure at times. Do not get me wrong I love my husband dearly, would die for him, but we have been having major problems and I do not know if the road we are traveling on will have a fork in it or stay straight.

How did he propose?

When he proposed to me: He called my mom and my dad to first ask them if it was ok that he asked for my hand in marriage. I got off work one night, he led me to the couch, and we talked about my evening at work and his evening at home. He then got on one knee and told me how much he loved me and that he wanted to grow old with me...he then asked me to spend the rest of our lives together. It, to me, was the most romantic thing ever...even to this day he tells me that he wants to grow old with me I still find it sweet and wonderful. As I said before I am not sure we are going to make it over this major hump that we are on...I hope that we do.

Tell me about your wedding?

Our wedding was simple yet beautiful. He and I got married in my mom’s backyard. We had friends and family. It was hot hot hot! I remember looking at Steve and feeling so bad for him...the sweat was rolling down him and I knew just how he felt. After the ceremony we went riding around, you know that thing you do.  When we got back we were walking down the driveway and I remember him grabbing my hand and saying to me “we did it baby...I love you.” We were not even sure that we were going to get married...due in part to a lot of things.

What do you fight about the most?

You ask what we fight about the here lately the things that I have done. He found out that I was emotionally attached to someone that was not him and he has not let me live in down. I am not saying what I done was right...I know that it was not.  All we do is argue over bills, if I have paid them and how the house is not clean enough. Believe me this is the cleanest house you will ever can eat off our floors and we have animals He tells me that I do not do enough around here and that he does it all. This is how it has always been...he took care of the house due to he likes it to be perfect and I took care of the other things. He now believes that other men want me, and that I want other men. He thinks that I am sooooo hot that all men want a piece of me. This is my fault. So there that is...all laid out...I was unfaithful in the emotional area. I did not sleep with the guy and that is the truth. I could have but I did not. I didn’t feel right doing what I was doing in the first place and taking it to that level. The thought just made me ill and sent me into panic attacks.

Do you have a lot in common?

For the most part, we have a lot in common…we both like to fish. We both like to go on walks and car rides to nowhere...we both like music. There is a lot of things that we have in common but what we don’t have in common is nice too because we have learned new things from one another and have learned to love it just as much as the other one does, even if it is not our favorite thing.

How often do you have sex? Do you have the same sex drive?

We don’t have sex very often...used to all the time...and I stopped having sex with him. I got tired of the verbal berating that he gave me all the time. He never ever stopped even before the emotional affair he accused me of having an affair with anyone and everyone there was, and that just pissed me off. No matter how hard I tried to convince him that I was not. He would refer to the girls that he dated before; they all cheated, so why should I be any different. Only until recently have we started to have sex a lot and he has even wanted to invite other people into it. We did and it has turned out to be a disaster. I am sorry that we did it and then again I am not...if that makes any sense. He wanted it to happen, it did and he totally took it out of hand. Even though I thought that it would be a bigger mess than the emotional affair, it has not been but it still has not been the best situation or ideal. We do not have the same sex drive. He wants it everyday and all day. I could care less if we had it everyday. I would be ok if we did it once a week...and we fight about sex and how we do not have it enough. When we do have it he thinks that I think that he is not good enough...when in fact he is the best that I have ever had.

What is the hardest part of your marriage? The easiest?

The hardest part of our getting over the humps that we have hit...and we hit them often. He had a rough childhood, and I know that it hard to overcome that childhood. It has made him the way that he is today. I do not want to be one of the people that have abandoned him. He needs someone to help him and love him despite all his faults.  I love him and believe in him. I know that he is a good man. I have seen it a million times. Nothing has been easy for us...we have so many things that have been thrown our way...miscarriages…our son who has issues...deaths and people always in our business....nothing has been easy for us.

How many serious relationships have you been in before?

For me there was one...I knew this kid all my life and was with him for many years right before my husband. I was sure I was going to marry this boy. He had a few.

I want to thank ‘Jane’ for answering my questions. It can sometimes be hard to open up, but I think this may help others.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Animal Lovers and Relationships

Having an animal means you already have a child. This furry friend depends on you to take care of them just as much as a child would. Although, you may be less hesitant to pull out pictures of your furry babies then your human ones, it does not make them less important. Dating a person with an animal puts a unique spin on your relationship. The classic “Must Love Dogs” symptom is not too cliché in the slightest and there are many things you need to consider before dating someone that has furry babies.

Do you like all animals?

You may prefer certain animals, but an animal lover loves their pets just as much as anyone else. Before you date someone that has pets or loves animals, ask them which kind of pet they have and make sure you can form a bond with that pet.

Can you live with the animal?

The ultimate prize for a relationship is to get married. Being married usually means sharing a house. It may be different for you between liking, loving and living with your significant other's pet.

After you have asked yourself these questions, there are other things to consider about a relationship that involves pets. Loving a pet lover can bring about unique date ideas.

Walking the dogs

Playing with the cats

Visiting animal shelters together

These are just a few ideas for dates if you are dating an animal lover. Finding a date that involves animals or pets is a great way to break the ice with someone new. This also brings up the animal issue very easily and comfortably.

The greatest fear of an animal lover falling in the love is the aspect of the other person not loving their animals. They are children, and are part of a package deal. If you find yourself falling in love with an animal lover but have the dreaded ALLERGIES there are things you can do. Do not give up on a relationship that has potential. There are medicines you can take, or have your significant other groom the pet more often. Solutions can be found.

 Read more about relationships and animals here:

Would You Give Up Your Pet for a Relationship

How to Date a Dog Lover

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Remind each other; ignite a new passion

On my way home from work last night, I heard a new song from Brad Paisley (one of my favorite artists). The song was called “Remind Me.” The song itself was about what it was like to be young and show your love every second of every day. Do you remember what it was like when you did crazy things just because you were in love? Sometimes relationships get so dull because time chips away at the passion that was there in the beginning. Although this is normal, it can leave the other person unloved. Every once in awhile you may need to remind each other that you love and cherish each other. My husband and I have done this a few different times during the years…

Whip cream fight

One night we took silliness to a completely new level. We had a whip cream fight. One little cake with cream turned into a mess of cream on my coat that had to be dry cleaned. It was fun, and did not turn sexual, but was a reminder of our love and spontaneous teenage antics.

Play in the rain

As a child we loved to play in the rain, it was like forbidden fruit. This is something I do often with my children, but it had been awhile since DH had joined me. Then after years of enjoying my kids, he decided to hop in. The unexpected surprise reminded me of how much I loved him.

Sleeping with a T-shirt

Do you remember the days when you would sleep with your boyfriends T-shirt so that you could remember what his smell was like? Too often, we get use to their smell and forget that euphoric feeling we use to have. Next time your guy is out for the night, or away on a trip, spray some of his cologne on a T-shirt to sleep with. Embrace your inner teenage girl. My husband goes away once a month for a weekend and doing this trick has help me remember what a great guy he has been, still is, and will continue to be.

As Brad Paisley says, “don’t settle for good, not great.” 

Read These:

Seven Ways to Save Your Marriage from Divorce

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Real Couple Wednesday (Holly and Daniel)

I struggled to find a couple for this week. It seems I have exhausted the volunteers. I decided, even though I have a page on myself (my love nest) and on my wedding, it is time for me to answer these questions.

When did you know you were in love with Daniel?

Adam was about eight weeks old, and in the hospital. We had been dating for a total of two weeks, and he had been hands-on (the best he knew how) with Adam. However, when Adam hit the hospital for RSV, neither of us had ever been in a situation. Dan would come to the hospital right after school, and send until he had to go home. When the unthinkable happened; Adam stopped breathing and had to be airlifted by helicopter, we struggled with the fact that he could not come with me to the hospital to stay. However, he was the one person that would call every night, at exactly 9pm. He would ask how Adam was and make sure I was taking care of myself. This is when I knew I truly loved him. He was the rock I needed at a time I felt by myself. He showed me how much he cared.

What did you do on your first date?

For our first date, I was invited to go to his H.S. prom. However, tickets were sold out by the time we started to date. We went to dinner, and then he left to go to prom. I tease him now that he ditched me on the first date.

How did he propose?

He had his parents conspire with a plan to catch me by surprise. I was told to take Dan to the local lake to help him find his uncle to invite him for supper. When we got there and out of the car, we started to walk to where I thought his uncle was fishing. When we got to a bridge over looking the water, there were three roses with a ring tied to them on the ground. He regrets tying it to them now, he was shaking so badly. I will never forget how he said it; “Will you give me the honor of being your husband, and of having you as my wife?” Of course, I said yes…and then my sister and some of our other friends (who helped organize the whole thing) popped out from behind the trees.

For my wedding check out the wedding page of this blog.

What do you fight about the most?

This question is hard to answer. We fight about many different things, but not very much of one thing. We do fight over the house chores, lack of communication, money, and raising the kids. We don’t fight a lot, but just a lot of about many different things. Most of the time when we fight about something, it is resolved and on most occasions we don’t have to bring it up again.

Do you have a lot in common?

Not really. Dan and I are very opposite. However, this is part of the reason we marred each other. We can compliant each others strengths and weaknesses. As far as hobbies go, we don’t share a lot. We have tried mixing things up, and including a bit for each of us or adapting a hobby to be more suited for the other, but this has not worked well yet.

How often do you have sex? Do you have the same sex drive?

We do not have the same sex drive. If it were up to him, it would happen more often. For me, I could often care less. I feel as if it is just another thing on my to do list. However, the last few months have sparked a new connection with us emotional, and that has elevated each of our happiness with our sex life. It has now become 2-3 times a week. We both hope we can hold on to this trend.

What has been the hardest part of your marriage? the easiest?

The hardest part of our marriage is the unconventional roles we play in our family. He is a SAHD, and I work outside of the home. This cause friction between us, and the outside world (which then causes more problems for us). Because these are not the traditional norms, we have to give each other the appreciation and assurance that we are doing what works best for us. The easiest part of our marriage is our conversations and friendships. We can still, after eight years, have conversations for hours about all kinds of things. We can treat each other like friends, which makes our time together fun. We like to laugh, and can poke fun at each other in a teasing good time kind of way.

 How many serious relationships were you in before?

I have been in two serious relationships prior to Dan. I was in a four-year relationship with my first love that turned into four years of physical abuse. I thought I was going to marry him and have kids. I am thankful now that I did not, I would not have turned into the person I am today. The second was a quick fling marriage with a child. We were married for about nine months, and only together for a couple before we got married. Although it was quick, I did fall in love and get my heart broken.

There you have it…the microscope has been turned on me.