Well, I think Joe and I have enjoyed being engaged and the fun of planning a wedding etc. But, what we really learned through this program was being “married” is so much more then a wedding and spending your life with a person you love …. its about a life you build and choosing a partner you can go through all of lives tides with.
We learned how to discuss “life matters”. For example, no one had every asked us certain things like if a family member was ill , would you take them in? or how far is one willing to go to help the other in any sort of hardship and the values we have as a foundation, It was a good example of our commitment not only to each other, but the new families we will merge and how far we are willing to go for the one we love and also their loved ones. We talked in a serious matter about children and the things we desired for raising a family and our beliefs in doing so. This is important because we know we are on the same page long before bringing a child into the world and that eases any tensions about finding out the unknown.
It helped us with conflict – resolution and communication. Which I think will carry us through our lives and is something we will always work on, but what i loved was how some of the questions were positioned and it helped us be able to answer questions and communicate in a neutral environment, while also learning what works and what doesn’t. For example we have silly arguments over one being neat and one being messy (haha) however it can be an argument frequently and the simple question of “why do you think this is still a problem” (knowing that it can cause arguments ) was a true eye opener. If you know something bothers your partner you make compromises to make the other happy and meet in the middle. This is just a silly example but it was extremely helpful in our relationship.
We have discussed family and our values in length and I have been able to guide Joe to a closer connection with his dad which i know was always a difficult subject for him, and he in turn has helped me with my spirituality and overall outlook which i always tended to worry to have more faith in god and being positive on a daily basis. In fact Joe and I have not been frequent church goers and we have found us leaning on prayer in hard times, or stressful times leading to the wedding. We went to church when it was closed to pray. Which is something we have never done, its been very comforting
I have to be honest about why this means everything to Joe and I. I grew up in a Catholic family, Although i didn’t always go to church I prayed internally very often. Sometimes i would find myself going to church at night or when theres no gatherings because for me its when its “quite” i feel i can connect with my prayer and God (or loved ones who have passed) I know there is no “right” or “wrong” but the truth is, we got married this past June on a beautiful vineyard but not by a priest. I think about this all the time and I want to start having a family but, in my heart i don’t feel right knowing we didn’t get married in the house of god. I want so badly to be able to say our love was blessed in the house of god and protected by his love. I want to do so before we try to have children and i feel firmly i will do what it takes to be able to marry in a catholic church before we can take this step. Joe, may not have understood this in earlier years but after the course, he not only supports it. He has helped me find this course and took all the initiatives for me to make this happen. We have talked to the priest in the church that I made all my sacraments in since I am a little girl and the recommendation was to complete precana and that’s where we are now. We thank you for the program and for even asking me what I’ve learned because it helped me reflect on it once again.