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    NORTHWOODSMOM8   51,229
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Sparking our marriages…Christian-
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Saturday, August 04, 2012

Boy, there are some NICE perks to my husband traveling so much! We just left Duluth, MN where we stayed the night at the Radisson and were upgraded to the 3-room Presidential suite! WOW! We were on the 15th floor with a view of Lake Superior that was ABSOLUTELY awesome!



Next we went to the famous Duluth Grill. I've lived in the Northwoods for over 22 years and we've never eaten at this diner featured on Food Network's Diners, Drive-ins and Dives. I had 1 egg/egg white scrambled, 3 bites of their DELICIOUS caramel roll with pecans, 1 1/2 pieces of applewood smoked bacon, red flannel hash ["A Duluth Grill original!" Sweet potatoes, beets, carrots, onion, & bell pepper tossed
in olive oil, thyme, S&P, then oven roasted.] and WONDERFUL coffee. It was SUCH a special treat! And if you haven't eaten there, and are in the area, you must try it! They EVEN grow their own veggies and fruits in the parking lot! It was QUITE the scene!!!




www.Duluthgrill.com/

Well, now the real purpose of my blog--SPARKING our marriages! emoticon

When my dh and I married almost 23 years ago, we promised that divorce would never be uttered from our lips! I remember when a VERY dear friend of mine got a divorce after 30 years of marriage, I marveled because they had been so in love with each other. Well, as much as I DON'T want to admit this, I can understand what happened with my friend--she entered menopause!!!!! I've NEVER, ever been so fragile and weak in my whole life!

Now let me go on a little bunny trail before I finish my thoughts above. I'm going to paint 22+ years of my life. I married my best friend and 4 months later we were pregnant with our first baby [I thought I was barren 'cuz it took me 4 WHOLE MONTHS! ha!] Then 2 months after his birth, I was pregnant again with our second son. 7 months after he was born, I was pregnant with our 3rd son. 4 months after he was born, I was pregnant with our 4th son. I had 4 babies in THREE years! The 4th year I had emergency neck surgery with 4, 3, 2, 1 year olds. Then several months later I was pregnant with our 5th son. Then we had a break of 2.5 years and I was delivering our 6th son. Then I had 2 miscarriages--one in June 2000 and another in June 2001. Then I got pregnant again and Mary was born in 2002. Thought I was done bearing children since I had her at almost 41. But 3 1/2 years later, I had my little Sammy boy. I used cloth diapers for my first 4 babies. I made everything from scratch. Nicholas was diagnosed with diabetes at age 5 [that was when I had 5 that were 5 and under] and I started homeschooling.

Now you'd think that would be a MAJOR weak time in my life, and I've definitely had my share of trials, BUT NEVER, EVER have I felt the way I feel going through menopause. All this to say, that I feel very weary of life and marriage! Well, my dh has stepped up the plate and I'm so, so grateful for God's grace! He has pampered me so much since last weekend when I had a MAJOR breakdown and actually thought about leaving which I PROMISED I would never do!

I know I'm being very honest with you all, but I just feel I need to express my thoughts about how much we need to fight for our marriages. Satan does NOT want us to have thriving, loving relationships. He wants us to abandon our covenants. I'm SO thankful for a man that is going to God asking for grace to minister to me in this very hard time of my life, and I'm looking SO FORWARD to finally being through this time of my life for his sake, and my family's sake! ha!

Anyway, we had SUCH a fantastic time during our overnight! We had a VERY special dinner with some friends Friday night. Then we just thoroughly enjoyed each other in our Presidential suite. This morning we played cribbage and talked before leaving the hotel. There are several things we are going to do to work on our relationship.

1. Go for walks together--we used to do this a lot and it was a special time for us to connect.

2. Play more games together--we love cribbage and scrabble.

3. Pray and read the WORD together

4. Go for an overnight [weekend] trip once a month [he's got 12 free nights waiting to be used]

5. Write love notes to each other.

Okay, well, I sure opened up to my DEAREST friends, but it's so therapeutic for me to communicate with you all. Thank you for allowing me this special time. Love you guys so much!

Susan
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

1FAVOREDBYGOD 8/12/2012 1:01PM

   

Wow. I SO appreciate your honesty, this was an awesome blog. I totally understand what can be the potentially lethal combination of marriage and menopause...I've been married 32 years and have been going through menopause for almost four years already (hot flashes and night sweats are the bane of my existence) and I have gone from a perfectly pleasant, upbeat woman to someone even I would prefer not to be around, LOL.
I agree with you mightily, Satan would love nothing more than to dissolve strong, long marriages over hormones. No doubt.

Thanks again for sharing your heart, you're amazing.

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GOURMETLOSER 8/10/2012 9:02PM

    Dearest Susan,
I so love your honesty. I'm not sure what your are going through ............yet!!!! But it sounds horrific. I'm sure it is not meant to be this bad although it sounds as if some good is coming out of it. Is is worth considering some HRT?
Love you

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BEEBEA 8/9/2012 4:18PM

    I honor you for supporting marriage vows -- no matter what! I've only been married 4 years, 99% of it perfectly wonderful, but during that 1% it's disturbing how fast it can seem like it's falling apart. But I'm committed for life and so is he, and like you, we're not even leaving that option open.

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SNOWANGELDIVA 8/9/2012 3:21PM

    Now I am terrified of menopause.
All it took for me to utter the un-utterable was migraines and an epileptic medication that sucked my will to live right out of me. Satan took that time of weakness to feed me lies that compounded with more shadows.
It is only year 15 for us.
I understand your heart felt thankfullness of a godly man that honours covenant and not convenience. God gave me one as well. It has been 8 months of fighting for us with date times, loving words and focusing on each other, but, we went from heading South to North with each step we took towards not giving up on us, and giving 'us' to Him.
We really are NOT each other's enemies, but, there definitely is one that wanders to and fro seeking to devour 'us' making 'us' his priority to destroy.
Thank you, Susan for opening up and sharing. Correct perspective is part of this battle.

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LITTLEFARMMOMMA 8/9/2012 11:44AM

    Oh, Susan, are we TWINS? CLONES? I guess I'd rather think of us correctly, and that is Sisters in Synch! ( emoticon I just thought that up--wasn't it CLEVER?)

Your blog touched me in such a dear, and even familiar way! Just last night, Drex and I began to plan our 25th wedding anniversary trip AWAY from all the distractions, and focus on just US. We had planned it to be a whole family camping trip, but we've decided to put that off for a different event. Our marriage is something we need to focus on right now, in this time of our lives, and we're even getting excited about rediscovering the romance we once had!

I love you, my friend, my Synch-Sister! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SWIMLOVER 8/9/2012 5:34AM

  Susan, Thank You so much for sharing this with us. You do not know how much you have helped me. My husband and I love each other very much but having a lot of medical bills, his losing his job and having to retire early, the news that he might have Cancer which by the way, PRAISE THE LORD, he DOES NOT HAVE CANCER was putting a strain on our marriage. On November 20th of this year we will be married 36 years. Thank You for putting down what you and your husband are doing--I got some GREAT IDEAS from them.
Satan does not want Christian marriages to last but guess what--JESUS HAS ALL READY WON THE BATTLE! You and Your Precious Husband will be even closer than ever. You have put this in The LORD'S HANDS and THE LORD IS WITH YOU!

Again, Susan, Thank You for opening up and sharing this with us. You and Your Husband and Your Family are Very Precious to The LORD!

Love In Christ,
Louise

Comment edited on: 8/9/2012 5:35:49 AM

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KATHYKIM 8/8/2012 10:51AM

    I want to thank you for sharing. I have been going through a difficult time in my marriage and often, when I read your blogs, I have jealousy in my heart because your family life seems so perfect to me. I love to read them, but Satan puts the jealousy there as well. Please know that your sharing has really helped my to gain perspective. I am so glad that you are enjoying the time you are able to spend with your husband. I am going to make a point to do something special for my husband when I get back up to the RV with him on Friday.
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FERGSGIRL2 8/7/2012 11:25PM

    I laughed, prayed and almost cried reading your blog! So much wisdom and unselfishness, love and sacrifice and it takes all of that to stay married! And throw in menopause--I know there is a God who controls the universe and me too! emoticon .
Menopause affects women in different ways, and i think I have experienced every part of it, and yes it affects our husbands too.

Thank God for your willingness to open yourself up and communicate your true feelings and share part of your life with us as well. Thanks for all the suggestions you made; we tend to let life take over and we wonder why our relationships are suffering--? Anything of value to us, is worth working for, toward and securing!

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PAMAPPLE 8/7/2012 9:42AM

    Susan, I was more irritable around perimenopause, too, but I felt better after menopause!!

I love your plans for you and your hubby!! Enjoy each other on those special times together!! emoticon

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EJOY-EVELYN 8/6/2012 5:49PM

    What a tremendous learning experience you have shared with us. The power of God's incredible and endless grace, mercy, and love is what keeps bringing you both into right relationship with God and with each other. Marriage is so very sacred and God's power in both your lives is what you share with us as you admit to the struggles we share during the process. May you find joy in the struggles (yes, easier said than done, but God says we can find the joy in our tribulations and he will not give us any more than he knows we can handle -- you are stronger than you think!). Prayers for continued healthy living and attitude that keeps you all in God's great favor. You're such a blessing to so many of us here and I praise God for the incredible influence and role model you have become to me.

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HIKETOHEIGHTS 8/6/2012 5:12PM

    Very loving and kind words Susan. You are so bless and perfect! emoticon

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BERRY4 8/6/2012 4:20PM

    Oh my...thank you so much for opening up your heart. You have really ministered to me as I sit here with tears in my eyes.
(I think the people suffering most from my "season" right now is actually my kids. They just do not understand what mom is dealing with.)

My dh taught me how to laugh, but sometimes we forget to take the time to be together and do those things that BUILD a relationship.

I'm so thankful that your dh is able to love you the way God loves us and minister to you during this time of life. -- The enemy desires to bring destruction, and I've told my kids so very many times: he just doesn't much care how he does it! And usually it will come from places we just do not expect.

Keep holding on to God and to each other.!
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The journey you walk is unique to you, but you have blessed us with the sharing to encourage us and challenge us on our own paths.

"...I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of Hi s glorious inheritance in the saints, and His incomparably great power for us who believe..." (Ephesians 1:15-21)

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BAMAJAM 8/6/2012 11:38AM

  Oh Susan--- I am sure that with God's grace that you and your husband will become even closer to each other. You are right, that the devil wants to destoy what is good, but God's power is stronger.
Menopause can bring a challenge, but it is a natural condition. For me, it meant the relief of terrible migraine headaches. I had no bad experience at all, not even a hotflash. You are a remarkable woman, remarkable mom, and your hubby would call you a remarkable wife, Susan... I am sure of this. If we ask for God's grace, He will give us the strength that we need. I think of my grandmother who lived in the olden days. She was widowed with eight children, one on the way. She had no microwave, no modern conveniences that we have today. And she was a remarkable woman of faith in God. Her virtue is a lasting lesson for my own life.
My husband and I have had 42 anniversaries---- despite struggles sometimes, life is BLESSED!
Susan, your wisdom and your faith will see you through any difficulty. You and your husband both have the virtue to succeed in your marriage. You are very special to share your story with us here at Sparkpeople----- and you give valuable support to others. THANK YOU SO MUCH, SUSAN!

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WELSTEACH 8/6/2012 5:38AM

    Sounds like wonderful, positive plans. Menopause can be tough. I suffer lots of
Physical effects with it, but the worst is mood swings. Sometimes I feel almost possessed. But God is good. He never gives us more than we can handle as long as He is by our side.

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SUSHIMAMA1 8/6/2012 2:48AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ORDERMYSTEPS 8/5/2012 9:18PM

    DEAR Susan, I'm sorry you have been struggling so! SO thankful your dh is really ministering to you! You are SO loved! Keep hanging in there - "this too shall pass" about the hassles of menopause - it will eventually get better! Love you my Sweet!!!

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KADULAC 8/5/2012 7:47PM

    I'm sorry you are struggling so much with this time of life. What a wonderful blessing God has given you for a husband. I know you are going to enjoy the extra time you will be spending together. Enjoy.

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MARTHAWILL 8/5/2012 7:25PM

    Hi Susan- as always appreciate your honesty. We've been married 42 yrs and there have been certainly been challenges in our relationship. Also, I come from a family of eight children with ten years between the oldest and youngest- that's one child born about every 14 mos. Certainly took it's toll on my mother eventually. Sounds like you have a good handle on things and I have not doubt you will come out a stronger person.
Thanks for sharing.
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HSMOM2FOUR 8/5/2012 6:35PM

    So thankful for your living testimony! Praying for you (and for hubby too!) as y'all deal with the challenges that this season of life is bringing to you. May God richly bless you both in your marriage and in your relationship with Him!

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TRUE-NESS 8/5/2012 5:18PM

    Awesome blog!!! Definitely on target. My hubby and I will be celebrating 22 years in a few weeks. I'm so thankful for him and for my wonderful family that God has blessed us with. Satan comes to steal, kill and destroy BUT GOD. He is a KEEPER and he will keep our marriages too if we entrust them to him and WORK at it.

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PMFISH 8/5/2012 2:11PM

    If we did not have trials, but we would not truly enjoy all the good times, just think that is the way it should be. Sounds like you will end up being better in the long run, seeing your husband step up when he is needed. You have spent so many years taking care of others, you forget you need to be taken care of.

Sounds like you have the right plan in action to make life even more enjoyable. You deserve it!

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PURPLELVR7 8/5/2012 9:00AM

    So wonderful to hear of people who really work at making the marriage work. It is a job, and like all jobs success is very rewarding. I will celebrate my 43rd wedding anniversary in November. We will be attending a weekend seminar on marriage in Sept.

Sorry you are having a rough time with menopause, I was blessed when I went through it - just the hot flashes.

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GOLFGMA 8/5/2012 7:30AM

    Menopause is a rough time . Those danged old hormones can't seem to find a balance. it sounds as if you have an understanding hubby by your side who will help get you though the rough times. Wishing for you peace and happiness now and always. emoticon

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NOCALORIES 8/4/2012 11:57PM

    You are a generous lady thank you for sharing.

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GRACEISENUF 8/4/2012 10:21PM

    The steps you are taking are AWESOME. We too will be married 23 years this year and 2 years ago we bought into our timeshare so we could "get away" together... (what a great decision that has been). We now make sure we use it and take that time to be a couple away from the stresses of daily life. You both have Jesus in your hearts and greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world! You will overcome the trials menopause can bring and you and your marriage will be even stronger in Jesus name! Enjoy your wonderful getaway!

God bless you both as you grow even closer to him together. Love you Susan,
J

Comment edited on: 8/4/2012 10:21:54 PM

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ACTIVEGRANDMAP 8/4/2012 9:50PM

    Thank you for your honesty. Bill and I will be celebrating 50 years in Oct. and without the Lord, we never would have made it. You are in my prayers. Pam

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BESTSUSIEYET 8/4/2012 9:26PM

    Susan, thanks for being so real! I think you & DH have a wise plan! I'm sorry menopause is causing you so many problems...will pray that God provides a way of escape from these debilitating feelings. Each of us goes through it so differently, but you seem to have challenges beyond what most women have.
Sending a big hug to you and a prayer to God, who calms the storms that rage!

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MANILUS 8/4/2012 9:06PM

    For as long as you have been together, and your big family along with all the trials that brings.....work on it!

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NDTEACHER1 8/4/2012 9:04PM

    I know right where you are with this. I don't know if I'm coming or going. You have great ideas to spark your marriage. I was married 7 1/2 years to a really terrible/bad person and have been divorced for 37 years in November. My bad experience scared me off. Hang in there.

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LAFEMMEDELALUNE 8/4/2012 9:01PM

    I wish you lots of peace in your travels through menopause!
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I had early menopause (via hysterectomy due to hereditary endometriosis) 5 years ago, and it has been a wild ride. Ugh. I am so thankful to have found the right doctor and even more thankful that my wife has been there for me through every crazy spell!

Hang in there! emoticon

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CRYSTLE4HIMTX12 8/4/2012 8:55PM

    Praise God for your husband's tender heart toward your needs right now. You two will make it through this season and see joy on the other side. I can see you are having moments of that joy now thanks to ya'lls hearts desire to make your marriage the best it can be. You are amazing, open and honest. I'm so blessed to call you friend. emoticon

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