How I Took My Spouse For Granted

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Zach + I have a little bit of a different story than most couples starting out. From the time we started dating we were always together. Within 6 months of our relationship we moved to Arkansas + 2 months after that we moved to London for 3 months. We moved back to Arkansas at the one year mark in our relationship. Then our life turned upside down when Zach had brain surgery + wasn’t able to work. When I say we were together 24/7, I literally mean 24/7.  And while that sounds nice being with the person you love ALL the time, it does have its downfalls. I am forever grateful that we’ve always been together, but these are two ways it hurt us.

 

#1 It gave us a false sense that we knew everything about each other.

Which is so far from the truth. We are constantly changing + evolving as a person + as a couple. If we don’t take the time to study our spouse we will miss so much. We can start to compare them to the old- which in a sense is holding them back in life. It’s okay to like the old person, but we need to embrace, love, + support the new one + grow our relationship in the process. Just some examples of how Zach has changed:

-He drinks black coffee now, when it use to be like “do you want some coffee with that sugar?”

-He eats + loves all fruit + veggies. If you ask his parents they’ll tell you he lived off chicken nuggets, skittles, + sopapillas. Funny story; the very first meal I cooked Zach was a turkey burger stuffed with spinach + feta and our bun was a portabella mushroom. And y’all HE never said a word about not liking the food. He ate EVERY single bite! He didn’t tell me till months later that he only ate that food because he liked me :P And now he actually enjoys vegetables HAHA

-He use to be obsessed with sports. To the point he even had an app that was dedicated to just sports rumors. It talked about who was maybe going to trade who ETC.  Recently he went through a pretty drastic season in life + with the help of God + others he removed idols from his life. Come to find out sports had become an idol to Zach. Not saying sports are bad + an idol for everyone, because they aren’t. But for Zach it was. (An idol is something you put before God, we all can have them + they’re normally all different for everyone.) Don’t get me wrong, Zach still loves LSU and all things baseball, but it has drastically changed. He put God first in his life + sports naturally took the back seat. He even told me the other day he hasn’t checked baseball in two weeks, I had to ask him to repeat himself because that is so not Zach. His passions, wants, + dreams have changed throughout the years as well. Luckily, I love all the changes that have been going on with him, but what if I didn’t? If I hold onto the old Zach I’m also holding onto the baggage + keeping him trapped in the past. I’m holding him back from moving forward with God’s purpose + calling for his life. That’s why it is so important to spend time with your spouse, really connect with them, and listen to their heart with an open mind + heart.

#2 I took our marriage for granted.

Since I shared just how much time together we got you might be able to understand why I took it for granted. Once we got married + had kids we were still always together. So why would we need to take extra time to stop + connect? If we know what we are doing 24/7 what is there to connect on? We know everything going on – WRONG. It is even more vital for us to stop + connect. Because always being together gives us a false sense of knowing everything. Yes we may know the facts, but we don’t know what is going on internally + how we feel about certain situations. Zach is always getting onto me because apparently I’m an “assumer”. When many of our arguments happen, Zach usually points out that I assumed one thing or another. Once we stop the cycle of life + get on the same wavelength we argue less. Connecting looks different for everyone, but for us it is super hard to fully connect while our kids are awake. They are in constant need of our attention + talk non-stop. No matter how tired we are, once we get the crazies to sleep, we sneak out of bed + go to the living room to hang out. Even if it’s only for 15 minutes it gives us a chance to connect. It’s not perfect every night. Sometimes our “to-do” list in our head has a louder voice distracting us, but we try to let our hearts connect to have a healthy marriage. Once you + your spouse truly open up about the thoughts racing through your mind, what God has been laying on your heart, or sins you’ve been trying to conquer; that’s when you’re truly “one” as God designed it. If we miss this opportunity, we miss so much more than just extra hang out time. Don’t miss this precious time connecting with your spouse. Learn from my past mistakes, because it took a good 3 years into our marriage for us to finally “get it”. With two young kids, a business, + trying to figure out this thing called life we were being stretched thin. It would have taken way less energy + way easier to skip this step. But trust me if you make it a habit you will put your spouse + relationship in a box that isn’t growing. That is what God created y’all for. He created your marriage to move mountains together.

So start connecting. It’s not too late.

XO Colleen Cashio

 

Wedding Photographer - http://cassiejonesphotography.net

4 Ways To Encourage Your Husband

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Are you a natural cheerleader? I was a cheerleader in middle + high school… but when it comes to the cheerleading of others, that’s one of my downfalls. Being someone's cheerleader does not come naturally for me. I veer more to the realist side in life, which can be good in some areas. Other times it can be bad, especially in the avenue of cheering on my husband. If he comes to me with a dream, the human part of me easily crushes that dream because I point out negatives. One of my goals for 2018 is working towards being a better motivator in the relationships around me, especially my husband. Let's be honest. We need more positive people in the world. There are already too many ‘Negative Natalie’s’. At least that’s what my husband calls me when I crush his dreams. Here are some practical ways I am trying to plant seeds of encouragement in my husband; I hope they help you too.

1.   Point out all the things he is doing right - I'm guilty of finding the flaws + making them WAY bigger than they are. Which in turn sends Zach into a downward spiral of feeling worthless + unloved.

2.   Help guide him to the things he's good at - instead of looking for his faults. Look for his strengths + build those up. We all have downfalls in some areas, instead of dwelling on those help build each other up

3.   Make him feel wanted – Give eye contact when talking even if you are juggling a million things; laundry, dinner, kids. Getting frustrated when his story is going on to long + you have stuff to do is a sure way to get him to shut down. Men already don’t like to talk + open up as it is, so if he wants to talk… LISTEN + TALK

4.   Verbal reassurance but also physical reassurance- I'm not the best at letting my husband lead, but God designed marriage for the husband to be the leader. I trust God didn't make a mistake in this, so I have to trust my husband to take charge + lead our family. It can be hard taking a step back for someone who is a "fix it" person (see a problem, fix it - that's me) but when I see Zach actively seeking God + reading His word I have ease letting go of the reins. It wasn't always that way. Zach didn't always seek God wholeheartedly. He took his own path, which he will explain in his very first post coming soon. 

What gave me inspiration to write this post is that Zach will be sharing part of his testimony very soon. I am learning how to be positive + help encourage him to share his story. Sharing things close + personal to us can be difficult, but we really believe that stuff happens in our lives so we can help others. It’s hard to help people if you haven’t been in their shoes before. It’s not impossible, but it is easier if you have some past experience. I am so proud of the man Zach is becoming, + I have no doubt God is going to do amazing work through him.

 

XO Colleen Cashio

Hello, World!

"The LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.” Genesis 2:18

"A man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh...Let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband." Ephesians 5:31,33

The Power of a Praying® Wife
By Stormie Omartian

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