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Sharon Wilson, a recent widow, shares the five things she learned in her marriage and wishes she would have known sooner.  

Last fall, I was asked to speak to a group of married couples who are leaders in Worldwide Marriage Encounter. At the time of the ask, I was widowed for just a few months. I wasn’t sure why they asked me; in fact, I asked the coordinator if she remembered that I was widowed. She reminded me that I have something to share and with my husband’s loss, I could let other couples know about our love and life and tell them what I wish I would have done. “The couples at the retreat are still in the game,” she said.   

Hindsight is 20/20 as they say, and I formed the talk around the five things I learned in my marriage and wish I would have done differently.   


Show Up.

There were events or obligations that Dave would want me to attend with him. I came to most work events or in-law obligations, but sometimes I would beg off and have him go it alone. I missed out on shared experiences with him, and I wish I would have showed up. Ninety percent of life is showing up.  




Say Yes.

In the years we were married and even into the years of my husband’s illness, he would often ask me to pick up some sort of special food, either at a restaurant or grocery store. I worked in the city, and we lived in a small town with fewer choices. I remember begrudgingly going out of my way after a long workday or sometime say no to getting that special something. I passed Dave’s favorite pizza restaurant the other day, and I only wish I could bring it home to him now.  


Be Present.

We all have work to do or tasks to get done. We have outside pulls for our attention. I think back to the times I spent on my phone or computer for work or curiosity instead of being present to Dave. When Dave was on hospice, we all intently became present to him because we knew his time was limited. Why not give the love of your life your presence all the time?  




Let Things Slide.

You don’t have to be right. I remember arguments about silly and stupid things. We both would argue our point and want to be right. Even if you are right, you don’t have to prove your point. My sister told me once, “Would you rather be right or liked?” Let things slide. I would change all my “won” arguments for more peace and time with my husband.  


Say "I Love You" More Often.

This one is self-explanatory. Say it every day. Say it twice a day. Say it in a text and on the phone. Say it in front of other people and say it when you are alone together. I still tell him I love him, but now it is to his photo in the bedroom. Say it to your spouse while they can say it back.  


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June is the month of love and weddings. It is a perfect time to reflect on your marriage and build it up. #CatholicMom

June is the month of love and weddings. It is a perfect time to reflect on your marriage and build it up. If you are married, look at these five things and try them out this month. You are, after all, still in the game! 



Copyright 2023 Sharon Wilson
Images: Canva