Monday, March 14, 2011

Arguments and a rubber ducky

Conflict in marriage in normal and healthy.  If you never had conflict, well. . . I would say you are a liar.  But, as Mark & I have learned (and continue to learn) it is how you resolve the conflict that matters. 

We recently read the book Everybody Wins: The Chapman Guide to Resolving Conflict Without Arguing with our mentor couple.  Mark & I don't have all out screaming matches - we are the sarcastic, snotty comments type of people.

Overall the book is really good - there were a few cheesy parts that we all agreed we would NEVER do.  One example, wear a sign around your neck that says, "I am listening" - yeah, no thanks.  But the point is that you need to really listen and take in what your partner is saying instead of just formulating your response the whole time they are talking. I of course have never done that.

We have definitely gotten better at resolving conflict, but we still have times of weakness. 

The other night we were giving the kids a bath.  Bath time is always crazy because, well we are trying to give 2 toddlers a bath!  I honestly don't even remember what we were fighting about (yes, brownie points for fighting in front of the kids), but it was getting as heated as our arguments get.  The tension in the bathroom was thick.  I was getting ready to rinse Piper off, so Mark was holding her as she stood in the tub and the next thing we know she was sticking her legs out in front of her.  Picture an Olympic gymnast on the rings with their arms straight down and legs straight out in front.  That is exactly what she was doing.  It was the oddest looking thing you have ever seen and she was giggling.  Mark's arms are on fire because our little girl, well she is not so little, but he starts laughing and I start laughing and then the kids start laughing. 

It was in that moment that I think both Mark & I realized that whatever it was we were arguing about was ridiculous and not worth the time or effort.  We got the kids out of the tub, put to bed and went on to have a really nice evening. 

I say all this to say that I am so thankful for being able to find humor in the midst of everyday life.  I am so thankful for the grace God gives us when we make such silly, selfish choices.  I love my husband more everyday because we can laugh together and forgive each other in the midst of our shortcomings.

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