The secret to a good marriage

Building a Good Rest Stop

Maintaining the roadways between your differences

Everyone will tell you a good marriage takes work.

From the get-go, it can be hard to find consensus (on movies, music, how to load the dishwasher, etc.)

Your tastes may be very different. One might love the Sopranos. The other can’t handle the violence. Or you might have loved the Gilmore Girls. But your beloved didn’t because there was just way too much talking.

The key point is that, although you differ drastically, you can maintain the roadways between those differences.

You don’t have to meet and agree in all the places of your lives. Just build lovely rest stops at the points where you do meet.

Regularly inspect the highways, repave where necessary, fix potholes.

Repair plumbing. Repaint. Check the hinges on cupboard doors.
WD-40 the squeaky ones.

Work on your connections.

Attraction forms the smallest part of a marriage. Respect, a larger part.
But by far, love and sheer endurance form the rest of it.

It’s a full time job, and it’s 80% hard and sometimes boring, 20% miracle.

If you’ve built good rest stops between your differences —
you know, the ones between the Sopranos and the Gilmore Girls,
or the ones between knitting and hiking,
or between windows open and windows closed —
those cool little joints that have Eliane Elias playing in the background,
the ones with the killer cappuccinos and the home made foccaccia.
And the bedrooms with working fireplaces for winter snows…
If you’ve built good rest stops, they will revive you when you need it.
They will carry you all the way to the finish line.
Wherever that is.

So just know this.
It doesn’t matter how far apart your differences are
as long as you keep maintaining the roads that connect them.

Tina Lear is a writer, composer/lyricist, yoga teacher, and mother of three really interesting humans. She founded the Long Island Dharmata Sangha and is currently navigating the liminal world between her past and her future. Doing her best to be in the present. She lives in Floral Park with her beloved wife and their big little dog, Ruby.

Writer. Yoga teacher. Musician. Buddhist. Quilter. Animal lover. Visible grownup. Hidden child. Secret dancer when all alone. Makes good bread.

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