Today your Daddy and I celebrate our sixth wedding anniversary! I hope that someday you are blessed to share the type of love that Daddy and I share. It is truly one of the best things in life! While we are not perfect, and our marriage is not perfect, we have made it a priority to do as much as we can to be the best we can be in our marriage and ourselves—for each other, and for you, sweet one. Your Daddy and I have spent nearly 10 years building our relationship and growing in love with one another. We have not been married for many, many years (yet!), but we have dealt with many struggles that come with life (someday I’ll tell you about them…but not now) but we have shared many more happy times together as well!
Since this blog is for you, and your soon-to-be baby brother, and any other siblings you may be blessed with in the future, I want to share some advice when it comes to relationships and love. Sorry, it’s just what Mom’s do! We feel the need to nurture you and help you grow in any and all ways we know how. Someday when you read this (and I’m not sure yet when that will be), I hope you know how much I love you and want what is best for you. Already I pray for your future spouse and your children, just as I have prayed for you since I was a little girl. Since your Daddy and I have been married for six years, here are six things (in no particular order) you should always remember when it comes to relationships and love. Keep in mind, I am not an expert in these things. These are just things that I have learned from experience or advice that other people have given to me. Ready? Here we go…
1.) You are here for a purpose.
“You are fearfully and wonderfully made.” Psalm 139:14
YOU, my dear, are not a mistake. You were put here on this earth to be someone special and to do great things. When I say “great things,” I don’t mean you have to cure cancer (although, that would be amazing!), I mean that by being yourself and developing all the talents God has given you, you will be bound to do great things! Don’t think for a second that you do not have purpose or meaning in this world. Love yourself, and be a person of integrity and virtue. You are a child of God, and He does not make mistakes. Ever.
2.) Build a foundation based on sincere friendship.
“Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help.” Ecclesiastes 4:9–10
When you find yourself wanting to start a new relationship, make sure it has a foundation rooted in deep and sincere friendship. If it doesn’t, you will be fighting an uphill battle from the beginning. Finding someone who has similar values, goals and beliefs is crucial to the success of your relationship. Life is full of ups and downs, and if you are able to trudge through it all with your best friend by your side then the ride will be that much smoother. Don’t force a friendship though, if he happens to not be your type of friend—then he’s probably not your type of partner either! Differences on the small things don’t matter as much—but the big things, like life goals, family goals and religious beliefs matter A LOT! Make sure all these things align (at least closely) before you get too far in. Developing a friendship where you can learn all of this ahead of time will help take care of all these things.
3.) Trust yourself.
“Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.” Proverbs 13:20
You are no dummy. If something seems like a red flag, it probably is. Don’t waste your time thinking someone will change or that things will get better. If you are dating a dud (or worse, married to a dud) find someone better!
Helpful Tip: Almost everyone dates at least one “dud” in their lifetime, but don’t worry, it helps us to appreciate the good ones even more! And trust me, the good ones ARE out there!
4.) Be willing to “give” as much as you are willing to “take”.
“Give, and it will be given to you. They will pour into your lap a good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over. For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return.” Luke 6:38
This one can sometimes be hard to do. It’s not always fun doing “boring” or “silly” things that your partner wants to do. But, it builds character and helps develop and cultivate your relationship with each other. Sometimes we have to do things like that to show the other person that we care. “Giving” in a relationship is just as important as “taking.” If someone is always “taking” and never “giving” then you probably need to reevaluate your relationship, or lack thereof. Balance is key.
Helpful tip: Don’t keep specific tabs on how much you give or how much your partner takes, just be sure that it feels about even when you look at the whole scheme of your relationship. Some months you may give more than you take, or take more than you give and that’s ok, too.
5.) Be with someone who will encourage you and inspire you to do your best in all areas of life.
“And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.”
Your ideal partner will inspire you to be the best version of yourself just by being who they are. If someone drags you down—leave, and leave quickly! You are meant to do great things, don’t let anyone (and I mean anyone), tell you or make you feel differently.
6.) It’s OK to make mistakes, as long as you learn from them.
“When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom.” Proverbs 11:2
Let’s face it–mistakes happen. Mistakes can be disappointing at times, but there is something to be learned in every mistake. Be open to the idea that you are not perfect and that you will fail at things. Be ready to face your mistakes, to say you are sorry and to move on from them. Most importantly, learn from your mistakes. Life isn’t always happy, but if you are accepting of the fact that mistakes will be made and lessons will be learned, then your perspective of failure will change. There is nothing wrong with admitting you made a mistake, in fact, it shows strength and helps you grow.
Helpful tip: If someone is never willing to admit they made a mistake; that is a red flag!
Most of all, I hope that no matter what you always feel loved, cared for and valued. You deserve the best that this world has to offer. We have some time before you start dating (a lot of time, you know, like 30 years ;)) but I hope that as you grow I can teach you all of these things so that you learn to value yourself and others. I hope that you are able to find love like your Daddy and I share.