How We Make This Work: The Jeffersons
With my How We Make This Work series I want married couples to share and give insight into how they work out common issues we all face on the other side of “I Do.” The goal is to show that despite what marriage may look like in the mainstream, there are many couples that are willing to put the work in to maintain happy, healthy relationships with their spouses!
Let’s meet The Jeffersons! And, no…not George and Weezy! LOL
Tara and Thomas Jefferson reside near Akron, Ohio, where she’s a freelance writer and he works as a director in higher education. They have two max-adorable children, ages three and four. Yes, you read that right…pray for them! LOL They have been together for seven years and married for four.
1) We make communication work by…
Working on it constantly. By nature, he is quiet. Like only speaks when spoken to – that type of quiet. And I love to have long philosophical discussions about…anything. So even after being together for so long, it still takes tremendous effort for us to communicate effectively. And that’s okay. We click on in so many other areas that we’ve accepted that this is our one flaw. LOL.
2) We make child rearing work by…
Parenting with the motto: “Love hard.” We love our kids tremendously and we make sure they know that. When parenting gets difficult, we respond by giving more love. When my son is throwing a tantrum? I hug the grumpiness out. When my daughter misbehaves? We sit down and ask her how she can make better choices in the future. Pure love. And we think it’s working.
3) We make our finances work by…
This is a tough one. Last year, I got laid off from my well paying job. Instantly, our family income was cut in half. I started freelancing and while I’m getting clients, the payment schedule makes bill paying kind of tricky. So we’re working through it month by month, looking at our budget and upcoming bills and doing the best we can to make this work. My husband knows how important it is for me to be a successful writer, and he’s willing to endure all the ups and downs that go along with that.
4) We make romance work by…
Not letting “we’re too busy/too tired/too broke” be an excuse to get in the way of date night. We try to have a date night at least every two weeks and we’ve learned to embrace those at-home date nights and how to make them special. I’ve been known to recreate a dish from our favorite restaurant – and it costs half the price!
5) What advice would you give to newlyweds (or even oldyweds!) on how to make marriage work?
Prayer. People used to tell me this and I would roll my eyes like, “You don’t have any better advice?” But I’ve learned that prayer (and a dose of patience) can get you through 99% of the issues that will pop up in your marriage. The key, which I think people forget, is that you are praying for yourself and how YOU can be better in the marriage. When people get in arguments with their spouse, they often think, “Man, if only he/she would just….we’d be okay.” But since you can’t change anyone, you can’t control anyone else, you need to focus on what YOU can bring to the marriage and I can guarantee you will see an improvement.
What wonderful advice! I hope you learned a little somethin’-somethin’ like I did! If you want to read some more feel-good-food-for-thought by Tara, visit her fantastic blog (my second blog home!), The Young Mommy Life. It’s awesome. Promise! You can also find her here, offering up some great tips on how to maintain a healthy and strong marriage.
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