This November Kaye and I will celebrate our 23rd wedding anniversary. We took our honeymoon to a family friend’s condo in Missouri (we were college students with very little money). The next year we went to Cancun, which was our wedding gift from my parents. After those two trips, we decided we would not stop taking a trip away every year. For the last 22 years, in the midst of graduate degree programs and toddlers, Kaye and I have taken a trip together every year. We regularly encourage other couples to do the same for the following 5 reasons:
Time away with your spouse is not the only way to reconnect in your marriage, but it is a great way. We spend focused time together every week, but spending a week together alone provides a deeper level of reconnection. Pressing pause on the hustle of life back home allows us to focus on each other and our marriage with significantly less distractions.
Kaye and I have dreams and goals for our marriage, our lives, and our family. The struggles and challenges of life can beat vision out of you, so it is important to find ways to bring yourself back to the goals you have set. Time alone and time away gives us lots of time to remember what we are committed to and reprioritize. After every trip, we make adjustments, sometimes small and sometimes large, to our schedules and rhythms when we return home.
3. Deeper Discussion
The biggest life decisions Kaye and I have made, including the last two times we have transitioned to new roles and moved, have happened on our annual getaway. Some decisions take lots of time and processing, and time away provides the time for that wrestling.
4. Fun together
During a normal week, it is possible to not have much fun together. A couple can make decisions together, raise kids together, and grow together without having much fun together. But we want to have fun together. Time away has given us many opportunities to do so. Exploring new places, new restaurants, and trying some new adventures is a ton of fun for us.
Spending time away together has given us a large cache of memories, of times we can look back on and tell our kid about, of times we can remind each other about. Having those times have provided great discussions with each other and our kids.
Is it easy to get away together? No! With kids it takes even more planning and coordination. This year Kaye flew our kids to my folks house and then flew back home before our getaway.
Is it costly? Yes. It does not have to be expensive, but it does cost money to get away. But an investment in your marriage is a wise investment. A healthy marriage gives a beautiful picture of God’s gracious love to His people. A healthy marriage is a gift to your kids. A healthy marriage provides encouragement for you.