Our society has become obsessed with big events. We focus on the wedding, the birth of the child, or even the funeral. People spend incredible amounts of money for all three and ignore everything that comes after. It is as if we are living in a fairy book where the day happens and everything else is just “Happily Ever After.”
Weddings & Creating a New Partnership
I have met people that have spent more than $30K on a simple wedding day that is over in just hours. This money could be put towards paying off debt, purchasing a car, purchasing a house, a potential child’s college education, or be their initial nest egg for retirement.
Outside of the money, they have not put the time and effort in to see if they really want to spend every moment of the rest of their lives together. Partnerships take work, even in the best of relationships. Looking at how you are going to handle the day to day tasks, the big experiences (both positive and negative) that are going to occur, how you want to spend your money as a couple,
The day of the wedding is not the most important day of your life or of your relationship. It is the little days were you spend the entire day just loving, encouraging, supporting, and appreciating one another and all of your quirks. It is when your spouse supports a crazy diet and exercise plan you are doing or knows exactly how you like your coffee and it is sitting on the table ready for you when you come down. It is when you come home after a really difficult day and they just hold and love you while reminding you just with their touch how amazing you are just by being you.
The foundation for their life has now shifted and has a partner connected to it. They are not only adding to their foundation, but creating a new one connected with a new person where everything each does is connected to the other. This takes a while to be built as the placement of each brick is incredibly important in creating a strong and stable relationship.
When children are born, all of the energy and focus is on the day they come into the world. This is just the beginning. From that moment forward you are working with them to create their foundation that will be their foundation for every day of the rest of their life.
As soon as mom and baby are home, everyone quickly disappears and the partner goes back to work. She is now home alone to handle everything with a newborn that can be having all sorts of things going on. This can be incredibly difficult and overwhelming without the hormone swings going on in her body to make it even more all over the place.
The mom still needs support and encouragement. It takes a village to raise a healthy and happy child, not just mom or not just the parents handling everything. They will burn out as we are not meant to do it all on our own. Simple things like bringing over pre-cooked meals they can just heat up, sitting with the baby or other children while she goes and takes a nap or a shower or goes and gets her nails done for some simple self care and recharging, giving the parents space in which to complain about everything to their heart’s content, asking about how they are doing and just listening over just asking about the baby, and reminding them they are more than just their baby’s parent.
This is not a time to tell them what they are doing wrong, how they should be doing everything, or finding ways to fix things. Instead, be there as a loving and encouraging support as that is what they need more than anything. I’m not just talking about for the first month or two either. This is something they, and everyone needs, their entire life and is an absolutely gorgeous thing to offer. When things settle, they will do the same for you.
Their foundation has shifted. There is another individual tied to their foundation and it takes a while to get a strong and durable foundation going again. If their original foundation was well built, they may be able to get the new one up and going fairly quickly, but there is an added pressure in this as they are also teaching their new little one from day one how to create and build their own foundation too that will be there to support them through life.
When it comes to funerals people are all over the place. We are so afraid, as a society, of death even though it is inevitable. If you are born, at some point you are going to die. Showing up to the funeral or sending a condolence card is lovely and is, honestly, the bare minimum.
When you lose someone, it takes a tremendously long time to heal from this loss. All of the stages of the grief cycle are just that – stages. You go through them over and over and over in all sorts of orders and at all sorts of depths until. There is no end point. Eventually it naturally lessens, but it is not quick nor should it be as your grief is a reflection of your love for the individual lost.
Many expect you to move on within a couple of months. They stop talking about the person that died. This is actually incredibly painful for the person going through healing. Hearing the person’s name with loving comments feels amazing and helps them feel like their loved one is still remembered.
After the loss, they have to start rebuilding their foundation from scratch again. It takes a while to get a strong and durable foundation going again. If their original foundation was well built, they may be able to get the new one up and going fairly quickly, but there are no guarantees and it is okay. Whether slow or quick, it does not matter as it builds as it builds – one brick at a time.
Happily Ever After
The small subtle strokes that occur in the, “Happily Ever After,” are what actually comprises one’s life. These strokes can create a phenomenal existence no matter what is thrown your way or completely throw you off. They also continue to build on your foundation strengthening and softening it so that you can handle the tough things that life throws at you or weakening your foundation and making it more brittle.
- How do you want your “Happily Ever After” to feel? To taste? To smell? To look?
- What can shifts can you make to strengthen your foundation? Do you see any holes to work on?
- What if, no matter what, you are doing it perfectly?
Slowing down and taking the time to build it carefully, gently, and lovingly leads to your foundation becoming stronger and softer so it can weather any storm. It is up to you which way you choose to go in every interaction.