If you're on Pinterest, you might have seen this quote: "Marriage is getting to have a sleepover with your best friend every single night of the week." Now, I don't mean to sound bitchy, but that quote bugs me so much.
Pardon me for saying this if you were someone who thought that was cute, but I can't think of a much more immature way to think about marriage. I sure hope the person who said it didn't mean that being married is only about having sleepovers every night, but as a police officer's wife, my first thought when I read that was that marriage is not at all about having sleepovers every night. In fact, some days, marriage isn't even about being together all the time either.
No, for us, marriage is so much more than sleepovers and togetherness. Marriage is complete and total support for your partner. Marriage is sacrifice. Marriage is waking up in the middle of the night so your spouse can tell you about his shift. Marriage is a pretty severe eye twitch (and getting worse!) because you can never quite rest easy when your partner is on the streets. Marriage is pulling on the oars together when times are tough. Marriage is listening to each other. Marriage is give and take.
Marriage is sometimes just letting the other person cry or scream or stomp or rant. Marriage is putting your partner's needs above your own. Marriage is picking up the slack for the other person when they just can't quite make it all the way. Marriage is a lunch left for your spouse in the refrigerator every single day, even when making it makes you late for work! Marriage is about making your spouse's life a little easier. Marriage is driving down the street like a bat out of hell to take your spouse his duty belt, his training manual, his coffee mug because he forgot it, he doesn't have time to turn around, and he'll be in big trouble if he doesn't have it.
Marriage is saying a prayer every single time your spouse leaves home that he will come home safely. Marriage is praying with all your might that you will see him again in 8 or 10 or 12 hours. Marriage is encouraging each other in all things...that you can accomplish something, that things will work out, that life will get easier. Marriage is neglecting the whole world if it means prioritizing your partner. Marriage is taking your spouse's side against the rest of the world. Marriage is being the proudest person in the room, clapping the loudest, smiling the widest, when your spouse graduates from college...and then from the academy. Marriage is standing beside your husband when he's sworn in, silently swearing to support him and love him and encourage him in his career. Marriage is believing in each other, even when you don't believe in yourself.
Marriage is saying I love you for you, with all your flaws, all your imperfections, and all your downfalls. Marriage is saying I will always love you, no matter what. Marriage is saying I forgive you, even when you spend all our money on police gear! Marriage is creating a life together. Marriage is dreaming and hoping for the future together. Marriage is trust. Marriage is mutual respect for each other. Marriage is saying I understand. Marriage is sleeping alone so your partner can fulfill a dream. Marriage is nights alone because you are married to a police officer, and crime doesn't just happen between the hours of 9:00 am and 5:00 pm.
Marriage is hard, marriage is messy, and marriage is tough. But marriage is also beautiful, marriage is also a blessing, and marriage is also a privilege. Marriage is not about having sleepovers every single night of the week. Dare I say it...if you think marriage is just about having sleepovers with your best friend, I think you're missing out. No, I do not need to sleep next to my husband every night to know that ours is a marriage that's going to last. I am a cop's wife, and I'll take my beautiful, messy marriage over a marriage built on sleepovers any day!