Today I finally hung up a canvas of a picture from our wedding. On this canvas are our wedding vows. It is beautiful and they are fun, heartfelt and completely free of burden and obligation.
I promise to dance with you in the kitchen and always appreciate your jokes
I promise to greet you each day with a smile and a hug
I promise to care for you when you’re sick, sad or disheartened
I promise to hold dear your dreams and help you reach them
I promise to hear you when you speak whether I like the message or not
I promise to work with you as a team through all life’s adventures
I promise to celebrate all of your highest moments
I promise to stand with you through life’s difficult ones
I promise to walk with my hand in yours through the rest
I am filled with joy when I read these over and when I see our canvas with our gorgeous selves so happy and glamorous and these words sharing space with that image I am reminded. I am reminded on the difficult days when demands are high, sleep is difficult and stress pushes every interaction in ways you don’t desire.
Work with it’s demands is an arena which can nurture growth, provide challenges and opportunities to effect change in the world. Work is not home. Carrying the effect of high demands into the home doesn’t help connect with your heart and your inner being. An absence of sleep isn’t helped by the additional tetchiness that seems to exponentially multiply when left unchecked. Stress is not an intelligent driver of responses to anybody. Stress is a good reactor and it is a useful preparation tool, for a deadline or to present well in a public setting. Stress is a terrible reactor at home and it is quick to rebuff hugs and squash smiles in it’s far too serious and oft times grumpy demeanour.
I remember when I see these promises to take a breath and to offer that hug that I promised. I remember to open my ears and listen like I promised. I remember to slip my hand in his like I promised. These promises that were born out of joy and optimism for a full life of shared adventure bring me back to what matters most to my heart.
I heard somewhere a long while ago that many couples who married didn’t remember their vows. Since on a wedding day we make promises to someone who we anticipate spending the rest of our lives with remembering your promises is likely really important. Maybe there’d be more happy and successful marriages if we all remembered and kept our promises. Scott-The-Lot and I wrote our promises together and we made the same promises to each other on our wedding day. We have chosen to have them be visible so that we remember and incorporate them into our everyday and our inner being. Heck if we are able to have them, even our children will know the promises we made to each other and they will see us keeping them.
I can’t help but wonder about how connected I am with these promises and about promises that I have made myself. I have set goals and I have set “new years resolutions” and I have tried to build new habits (none of these with much success) but I have never made myself a promise, certainly not with such ceremony and celebration. I suspect that I should. Since these vows bring me so much joy and create a space for me to be truly present with my Scott-The-Lot maybe it’s time for me to create some vows for my relationship with myself. It definitely would do me no harm and perhaps a very great deal of good. I’m going to have a go at writing some personal vows. I’d love to know what you would vow to ensure a harmonious, supportive and loving relationship with the person who will have your back every minute of your life, you.
“Loving you is easy, it is as natural as drawing breath and as beautiful as the breaking dawn” ~ Bel McLean Briggs