Have you seen the movie “The Lakehouse” with Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock? It’s a little dated now, but I was up late flicking through channels on my TV and I chanced upon it. I’ve already seen it, but I thought I’d just watch a few minutes. As often happens at 11pm, it hooked me in. I finally stumbled into bed a couple of hours later.
The movie follows a similar plot line to most romance movies and novels. It captures the emotion of 2 people falling in love. It’s that nervous tension that hooks us in – will they discover each other?
I get it, there is some nostalgia for us that are married of the special time when we first fell in love with our spouse. But at the same time, I have discovered there is a danger in how our modern culture celebrates love.
Big Idea: We should celebrate staying more than starting
Have you noticed almost all romance movies and love songs are about when a couple first falls in love? Boy meets girl. Why? We love the romance and emotions of falling in love. We are infatuated by it.
But here’s what we don’t seem to celebrate as a culture – Staying in love.
When is the last time you saw a movie about someone simply being married 42 years? Or an affair NOT being the answer to problems? Or a real-life depiction of what happens after a wedding?
I can’t think of any Blockbuster romance movie that shows a couple 13 years in, living in the suburbs, stepping on Lego their kids left on the carpet, driving a mini-van, and trying to find the energy to do it all over again the next day.
And therein lies the trap – the 13-year couple is normal. Not only is it normal, but if we recalibrate our definition of romance, I think we can discover a new beauty and emotion in the mundane.
We need to change what we celebrate. The most romantic notion of love needs to be two people who build a life together.
It’s easy to start. But staying takes commitment, sacrifice, loyalty, longevity, investment, change, forgiveness, and many other aspirational qualities. Real life marriage is more romantic than we often give realise.
Real marriage is a beautiful thing. It’s the valleys that give meaning to mountains, night to day, winter to spring.
Cindi and I have put together a new Marriage Course. It’s called Marriage Goals: 8 simple rules to go from 😡to 🥰. It’s a quick, non-scripted, marriage enrichment course for real couples. Join Cindi and I as we distil nearly 20 years of marriage lessons into quick bite-size videos.