I've been married to this handsome guy for 35 years. I'm still in love with him as much as I ever was. In fact, more than I ever was!
I've pondered over this a time or two in my life. What I've decided first and foremost is that you both have to want it. It just doesn't happen like some random miracle. Common goals, values and beliefs are huge. But then so is communication. There is no room for keeping secrets from one another. The only secrets that are allowed are the gift kind. I love surprising and being surprised by the gifts we've given one another.
Random acts of kindness like bringing home flowers or making a favorite meal earn good points. Helping around the house is also a great way to keep things alive. Nothing pleases me more than randomly doing the dishes or cleaning up. It shows how much he loves our home and me.
Taking a crying baby, especially during the night, long enough for me to get a second wind was so appreciated when we had little ones. Sitting down and being able to talk to one another and our children is a great way to show me he loves me.
This is the guy I want to hold hands with forever. I want his arms around me when I've had a bad day or unpleasant news. It is his face I love to see in the temple. Praying and serving God together has strengthened our relationship. We haven't had much opportunity to serve together but now we do and it has enhanced our relationship.
I always wanted a marriage like the one my parents have. As I as well as others, watched them, you could see how much they loved one another. I believe we have that. Sure we tease and spar occasionally but that too keeps us from making the trivial things too important.
When I read, "Men are that they might have joy", I believe I've found that joy in my marriage. There is no one else ever that I would rather spend eternity with than my sweetheart. Marriage is work. It is give and take. It causes tears and pain at time, but that is such a small part of my experience. The happiness far outweighs any of the difficulties we've experienced. Here's to 35 more!