Post Warning: This post will probably be lengthy, and I’m not sugar-coating anything, it will be raw and at times may be even harsh. Just fore-warning you all.
Jonah and I have been together for seven years. Whenever people ask and we tell them, they usually have a look of amazement and follow it up with “wow that’s a really long time!”. Jonah and I have been together longer than most people have been married.
Is it really that amazing though that we’ve been together for so long? Is it because we’re both so young (Jonah is 25 now and I’m 23)? Or because in today’s day and age, the true values of a solid relationship has crumbled into “wyd?” text and 15 minute relationships and 72-hour marriages?
What is the “Seven Year Itch”?
According to Urban Dictionary, the “Seven Year Itch” is described as a time, for some reason or another, during the seventh year of a relationship (most commonly associated with marriage, but it honestly goes for anything where two people are emotionally involved with each other for a span of seven years), in which one or both parties become essentially bored, and usually seek out another partner, they cheat or have an affair.
Relationships are not easy and they are certainly at times, not pretty. And that goes for any relationship, whether it be your boyfriend/girlfriend, wife/husband, family, and even spiritual and religious relationships. They all have their ups and downs.
You will bicker.
You will raise your voice.
They will do things that annoy the ever-living piss out of you.
They will try your patience.
And yes there may be periods where there’s just no “umph”.
Does Jonah do things that annoy me, yup! (like leaving a new toilet paper roll on the counter while the now used up cardboard roll still remains on the holder) Have we bickered? Plenty of times. Had fights? Only two, but yes! Do we stay in and watch movies on Netflix more than most couples like we’re both 80 instead of in our 20’s? Probably!
But have I ever, in our now seventh year of relationship-ing, thought “I wonder what being that guy’s girlfriend would be like”? And vice-versa.
And you want to know why?
“When you go through deep waters, I will be with you.”
Whether you are a religious couple or not, you cannot deny that the scripture verse above is well…deep.
The reason so many relationships fail, and the numbers grow more and more each day, is because people are not willing to actually stand by the person they proclaim so much love for on social media when they need them the most, when things get boring or things get hard to handle. They are looking for quick fixes and bragging rights. They “fall in love” with the facet of the #CoupleGoals you see all over Instagram and SnapChat who travel a different country every week or who’s boyfriends by them $200 worth of makeup. So they go out looking for that, to copy someone else’s relationship. And what happens when the magic wears off? Their minds begin to wander for someone else to have that social media worthy relationship with. We are in that age of the social media relationship and you cannot deny it.
They are living their lives in shallow waters, afraid to step any deeper.
Jonah and I have been together for seven years, I do not say dating because for the longest time we were in the limbo of not in the “talking” phase, but not kissy-kissy boyfriend/girlfriend either. But we were 100% fully invested in each other and it was so much deeper than any “label” could ever have, not a lot of people understood that. They assumed we did it because we “didn’t want to mess up our friendship” or that we were just simple friends with benefits.
When we met, we were both in very dark places. Mine was like a room with no windows or doors, but his was more like three miles under water where you needed thousands of years of bio-luminescent evolution to even have the tiniest bit of light.
Both our waters were very, very deep.
I will write a separate blog post about my own journey with Christ and how he helped me through my deep waters, but this post is strictly about Jonah and I, intended to inspire and educate.
We would say up until 3 AM on school nights, just talking, and during those nights we had a lot of laughs, a lot of cries (mainly on my part…I’m a very empathetic person), and a lot of deep breaths that put cracks in the walls we had built around ourselves.
Though we were both going through incredibly dark stuff, whenever we had our conversations, whether in person or not, we put aside our troubles to make room for the other’s. And that is an incredibly hard thing to do, especially considering we were both in our young to mid-teens during all of this.
We stayed by each other through the deepest of dark places, I saw parts of Jonah that no one has or will ever see except God, and he the same for me. Never once did I think “wow this guy is completely jaded and his walls are too high and too thick, I just can’t!”.
And eventually, we saw the Light, we came up from our depths, together. Now that I and Jonah are older, we can look back at all of it now and definately say God had his hand in every action, no matter how painful it seemed at the time and no matter how much we felt we were being punished with what all was going on. As much as we were there for each other through deep waters, so was He.
So I will take my trips to Target over trips to Ibiza, I’ll take my Netflix binge nights over a fancy black-tie dinner at some swanky new place, and I’ll take the depression and anxiety and pain over some Insta-Famous facade any day.
Because it’s real.
It’s in His hands.
And it’s true.
And he and I are both truly blessed.