A Pair of Old Shoes {The Grove: Marriage}

marriage grove

“We’re as comfortable as two old shoes together.”

A quote from one of my favorite movies keeps popping into my head as I reflect on my FIFTEEN YEARS of marriage. (The quote is from “Tin Cup,” if you’re wondering, and I can explain why it’s one of my favorites, but that’s for another time). I had to put FIFTEEN YEARS in all caps so you’ll know how excited I am about celebrating my 15TH wedding anniversary in June! Since I’m in such a celebratory mood, this post is all about the good stuff (there’s been hard stuff, I promise, but like my explanation about why Tin Cup is one of my favorite movies, we’ll save that for a future post).

I remember making it to seven years and thinking “Wow! That’s a long time to be married!” and now that’s hilarious. I hope to read this FORTY years from now and laugh at myself for thinking 15 years is a long time. Over the course of our marriage, my husband, Jeremy, and I have become as comfortable together as a pair of old shoes, and I couldn’t be happier about that.

Just like the two shoes in a pair go everywhere together, my husband and I tend to do the same. We met before either one of us ever dreamed of going to China, so the dream itself was OURS from the beginning. Our marriage is the holding tank for all my overseas memories. My husband and I mutually shared the experience of living in China, and I’m so glad it isn’t something I have to explain to him. We lived through it all together–from that surreal first night smashing gigantic cockroaches that greeted us in our very first Chinese apartment, right down to the last day, dragging three kids and too many carry-ons through the snow. I don’t often expect anyone I run across in my daily American life to truly understand the life I lived on the other side of the ocean, and I’m okay with that because my husband was right there with me and saw it all…the good and the bad.

Would you wear just one shoe if you lost the other? Of course not. Try it tomorrow, and I assure you’ll catch more than a few sideways glances thrown in your direction. In the same way that one shoe doesn’t make sense outside the pair, I don’t make much sense without my husband. Like a shoe that’s lost its mate, I’d have a rough go of things without him in my life. The challenges we endured during our overseas experience as well as the good times we’ve had together have cemented the bond of our marriage to the point that, like a pair of old shoes, we are useless without each other (well, I’m useless without him, but I think he’d do okay without me since he’s way better at parenting and adulting than I am). Thank you, Lord for my other shoe!!!

My oldest and most favorite pair of shoes aren’t exactly as fashionable as they were when I first bought them. Like old shoes that are no longer trendy, my fifteen-year-old marriage is out of style in a fast-paced world where shiny and new is preferred to “broken in.” The media is constantly praising people who have a shiny outward appearance because they’re super successful in their field or they’ve sold more records or movies than anyone ever, but so many of those people the secular world praises have neglected their marriages for so long they’ve fallen apart. If that’s success to the world, I’ll pass on that shiny new pair of shoes and keep my old pair as I repeatedly choose to make my marriage a top priority.

There’s a time to discuss struggles in marriage, but like I said in the beginning of this post, I’m in a celebratory mood. Join in on the festivities by sharing about the good stuff in your marriage in the comments. What would you compare your marriage to, and why? This could get fun! I can’t wait to read your answers!

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  1. Katherine May 30, 2019

    I totally get this: “(well, I’m useless without him, but I think he’d do okay without me since he’s way better at parenting and adulting than I am)”

    1. M'Lynn May 31, 2019

      Good to know it’s not just me. Haha!

  2. Marilyn Laplante May 30, 2019

    Congratulations on your upcoming anniversary! I couldn’t imagine my time in China without Frank, either! Even though it actually was more MY dream than HIS at the beginning, it’s become OUR treasured memory together.

    1. M'Lynn May 31, 2019

      Thanks, Marilyn! “It’s become OUR treasured memory together.” Love that!

  3. Jenilee Goodwin May 31, 2019

    If I could compare marriage with Jeremy to something it would be something like a hot air balloon, always ups and downs but no matter what it will be beautiful and fun. Or, the song Tightrope from The Greatest Showman… walking a tightrope with a great view. Stressful, but a view lol What a fun post. Thanks for making me think of the fun this morning!

  4. M'Lynn May 31, 2019

    Jenilee–I like your comparisons. You’re the second to mention tightrope! (someone else commented on Instagram). Both are comparisons I haven’t thought of. Also, I haven’t seen The Greatest Showman yet, but during the tightrope song I will think of you whenever I do get around to watching it!

  5. Maggie VanSlooten June 1, 2019

    My marriage overseas was like a glove. I was the glove, he was the hand. We were in it together and although the hand could have done it without the glove, I made things a little smoother. He gave strength and shape to our vision. My dear husband is with Jesus in glory right now. I hope he would smile at this illustration. Yes, I’m still on the field.

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