Our Marriage: Years 1-3

I really have no idea where to start. I just figured I’d break down the last 10 years of marriage, little by little. And let me just clarify that I’m not writing these marriage posts from the point of view that I’ve figured it all out….or that we’ve got this perfect marriage. Because we don’t. I just want to share our story in hopes that it will encourage you to fight for your marriage. Marriage. is. hard. And if you’re not willing to fight for it, it won’t work.

Michael and I dated for 2 years, and then we found out that we were expecting. So, things got hard and complicated real quick. We both knew that we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together, and expecting a baby was a blessing. But because we stepped outside of God’s will, life got hard. And scary.

We got married when I was 5 months pregnant. It wasn’t my “fairytale wedding”….I mean, how could it be? I couldn’t pick out any wedding dress that I wanted. I had to pick out one that fit my bump and that also flattered me somewhat. We went to the Bahamas for our honeymoon, which was amazing. But still, not what it could’ve been. I had morning sickness, and other pregnancy related stuff.

When we got home, we moved into our single wide trailer. I was still at USM trying to finish my degree. Michael was working a commission only job. And we were PO’FOLKS! We were 2 young newly weds just trying to survive. Not as “blissful” as I had imagined.

I had Abby 5 months later. She was the sweetest little blessing in the world. But…we were barely making enough money for the 2 of us. Now we had another mouth to feed. And we knew nothing about being parents. We barely knew anything about being married. Spring classes started back up literally 2 weeks after I had Abby. I wasn’t giving up. I was determined to finish. We got involved in a church, joined a small group, and man….those friends in our small group carried us through the next several months. {insert: surrounding yourself with the right people is CRUCIAL!}

Michael and I needed encouragement from friends. We had just entered a season of life that we knew nothing about, and if we hadn’t had those Christian friends, we would’ve never made it! I want to camp here for a minute. Because surrounding yourself with the right people is SO important in life….and in marriage. Throughout our  marriage, I can pinpoint a lot of our ups and downs to who we were hanging out with at the time. Now, I’m not putting blame on other people for stupid decisions that we’ve made….but when you let others into your life, they will influence you in either positive or negative ways. If your marriage is on the rocks, re-evaluate who’s in your influential circle.

Ok, so for the sake of time, let’s fast forward a little…..

We moved from Hattiesburg when Abby was 6 months old, we moved into my in-laws pool house because still….we were PO’FOLKS! I was still trying to finish up school, Michael took a job that required him to be gone a.lot. and I let someone into my “influential circle” that had no right being there! This person started driving a wedge in between me and Michael and we started fighting a lot. I didn’t feel loved or appreciated. Several months later, we had hit our first major wall in our marriage. We went to a Christian counselor and got some help on how to navigate through this. {insert: it is OK to seek out professional help! Godly help. Don’t let friends or family members counsel you. That’s not what they’re there for}

We got over that hurdle and realized that we needed to get plugged in to a church. Sure enough God brought some amazing people to surround us, love us, and encourage us. We started falling in love with each other again, and started falling in love with The Lord again.

But then…..a couple years later, we hit another wall. A very familiar wall. All because someone entered our “influential circle” that didn’t belong there. {insert: when walls start coming up in your marriage, figure out who’s building them}. We sought out help again, but this time God had other plans. Michael and I both had good jobs, and we loved being in Brookhaven, but Michael had a chance for a promotion. It just required us to move.

Long story, short. We moved to Seminary, MS. We knew no one. We got involved in a church, and had a good group of friends that loved on us and our family (We did have another child at this point. Totally forgot to mention that! Lol!) However, we didn’t “hang out” with friends like we had been. BUT…..we spent SO much (needed) time together. Our marriage grew leaps and bounds. And I fell so in love with Michael Bishop that my heart could burst! God put us in Seminary for 3 years so that we could reconnect. And I am so thankful for that time.

Well….we just got to Bowling Green, Kentucky. And we’re about to tour the Corvette Museum. {insert: I am a Corvette junkie! I’ve loved them since I was old enough to say Corvette. So, I’m pretty pumped about this stop!} I’ll write again soon. And we’ll talk about the next few years of our marriage. But if you didn’t get anything out of this post today, I hope you’ll just remember that God loves you. He has a plan for your marriage. Seek Him. Seek Godly friends. And fight for your marriage. It’s so worth it!

Have a great day, friends!