We exchanged a lot of notes back and forth while we were dating, some that made me all twitterpated and anxious for marriage and some that just made me crack up. I was reading some yesterday during a nesting/reorganizing rampage and just laughed in joyful disbelief and gratitude for what we share.
Now that the gushing is out of my system…a few years ago for Christmas, I gave Andrew a journal we could write in together as a way to hold our letters in one spot. We filled up a lot of pages quickly…at first. Then we petered out a little. I'm fine with things being unforced and just naturally having different seasons for different things--I prefer it that way, in fact--but at least on my part, the lack of writing started to feel like a lack of effort rather than a lack of actually wanting to start writing to my husband again.
So, in a fit of Pinspiration a while back, I set out to do a 30 Days of Prayer-type thing for Andrew, and…well, failed. I got as far as making a list of 30 intentions specific to him and faithfully wrote him a note about each day's intention before I went to bed, so he could read it before work in the morning. For about two weeks. The biggest problem for me, I think, was intentionality. I sometimes fall into not viewing self-imposed projects, in this case writing a letter every day for 30 days, as real obligations, even when they should be--not that the writing was a duty in the sense it was a burden, but it became too easy for me to push it aside in favor of other things I wanted or needed to do…if I'm being honest, it was more things I wanted (if the only choice was between a letter or dishes, my answer would've been obvious...).
Anyway, I gleaned at least two fruits from this. The first is that in all things, not just in letters, my husband deserves the best of me, which includes a willingness to follow through on commitments and to sacrifice my time for him. Not exactly a revelation, but an important reminder for me nonetheless. The second is something I've always known and loved: that words have immense significance, and can become such a gift to another person. It's easy for me to pray constantly for Andrew in my head throughout the day and to frequently thank God for our relationship, but I really do love the idea of creating occasions for more focused, intentional prayer.
That being said, I'm eager to reignite my attempts at daily written prayer for Andrew, maybe with less pressure on myself this time yet with a renewed effort to willingly give this gift to him, and I'm also curious to know how other couples do the prayer for each thing. What's your experience been? Do you and your fiancee have specific or creative ways you pray for each other? And do you encounter any of the same consistency struggles as I do? I'd love to know!
P.S. I'm SO excited to be attending Pope Francis' canonization Mass for Bl. Junipero Serra in Washington, D.C. tomorrow! I would love to pray for you--please do get in touch if you have any special intentions!