From first love’s passion to end of life, relationships go through a rollercoaster of ups and downs, seasons of change. People grow and evolve over time, but not always at the same rate. Passion changes, emotions wax and wane. If you’re in it for the long haul (and I believe most of you are), you’re bound to experience these ups and downs and it helps if you prepare yourself for them.
You may not always going to feel the giddy passion that you felt when you were first together. Your passions may increase and decrease at different times as you age and go through life’s changes. Sometimes it might even seem like you don’t like each other, but hopefully what you’ve built together is a strong foundation of friendship and devotion (commitment) that will help you ride out the challenging times and tides of your relationship.
You might even develop other friendships over the years that are as close or in some cases closer than the one that you share with your partner. I want to caution you on this note. Make sure that you are devoting as much or more time and energy to your partner as you do to these friendships. You want your love relationship to be fulfilling on all levels, emotionally, physically and spiritually. It takes effort and energy on both your parts to make this a reality, and truly is the only way to keep your connection strong. Both of you must keep this in mind. Getting too comfortable can be a mistake. Assuming that “we’re fine” and don’t need to work on the relationship is a common error that couples make, and then they wonder why they don’t feel close anymore.
When painful or difficult things happen; trauma, death of a loved one, loss of friends or career, health issues; these are the times that your strength is tested. Will you pull together and help each other stand, or will you fall apart? Life can throw you a lot of tough challenges. Having your person gives you confidence and hope even when times are tough. You’ve got to be assured that you can rely on each other no matter what outside circumstances may occur.
Supporting each other through the seasons is a tall order when you’re struggling in your relationship, but if you begin with love, friendship and a deep commitment to keeping your relationship strong and put for the effort needed to do that, you can come through just about anything in life with your partner.
The main thing is to create a deep and abiding love that will endure through those dark times and bring you back out in to the light of love and friendship again. Realize in the middle of the challenging times that you have someone in your life that you can truly count on and be that person for your partner as well. When you’re not feeling it, and there will be times you’re not, you will have to rely on the knowledge of your love, passion and history to bring you back into the light.
Life gets messy and complicated, then it gets fun and easy again, then it gets messy and complicated. These are the seasons that most couples have to go through. Keep your connection strong, show love and gratitude, keep a sense of humor, and above all, keep that knowledge in your heart that this is your chosen person, and that you would choose them again today, tomorrow and continue to choose them for the rest of your lives together. Remember why you fell in love with this person and all the good things that having them in your life brought to you. Stick together, stay close and connected and you can weather the storms and seasons of life together and build a future that’s bright.