For MONDAY MARRIAGE MATTERS, I want to share a journal entry, from my own journal, a couple years back:
9 April 2018
There is a part in the book, Gone With the Wind, when a group of ladies are criticizing Scarlett Ohara, behind her back. And what they were saying about her was probably true. She was a hard, selfish, immature character! But, when Melanie Wilkes hears what they’re saying, she threatens to throw them out of her home. She says something to the affect of, “Maybe YOU have forgotten what Scarlett has done for me, and for my baby. But I WILL NEVER FORGET! I will never never never forget!” (I tried to find the exact quote again, but couldn’t…dang it…)
Whether or not she saw clearly Scarlett’s shortcomings, at present, Melanie had a fierce gratitude and loyalty to this faulty character, because she “will never forget” what good Scarlett had also done.
I have thought so much about Melanie, fictional character though she is, and the characteristics she has that I would like to attain myself. Kindness, humility, no tolerance for gossip, forgiveness, loyalty. But the characteristic I have wanted the most to emulate is her gratitude. And not just gratitude at the moment the gift is given, but her ability to REMEMBER and seek to, if not repay, remain loyal to those she is grateful for, in the book.
DAD. I will never forget the nights in High School, when I was really really struggling, and he would give me a Father’s blessing, then he would hold me while I cried. Sometimes he would massage my head. I was never a burden on him. I will never forget! Never never never.
MOM. I will never forget the weeks before and after Matthew’s birth and death. She so selflessly and tirelessly cared for me and for my children! She served me purely. I will never forget! Never never never.
BRYANT. I will never forget the night my emotions were more than I could handle – I was more than I could handle. And I cried and I ranted hysterically and I stormed around our NYC apartment, nearly out of control. And he took me in his arms, and then he took my face in his hands, and he looked so intently and so seriously into my eyes, and he said, “This is not you. This is not you.” It was the first time that I had ever conceived that my grief and my temper and my anger and absolutely overwhelming sorrow was not me. And he knew me. And he loved me. Because he could see. And he helped me see. I will never forget.
There is no way I can possibly remember, let alone list, all the good I’ve been shown – SO MUCH GOOD HAS BEEN OFFERED ME! Especially by my beloved husband, Bryant.
There is no way I can possibly remember, let alone list, all the good I’ve been shown. But remembering to remember is a start.