A good marriage is a life-time building project. The type of house you want (personal vision) would determine the area, your budget, the kind of contractors and the required materials. Although, there are some popular mode of finding suitable plots of land (partner) such as through estate agents, adverts or word of mouth (family, friends and work), you may find the plot in an unconventional way (online). Once you find the plot of land, you do soil test, survey, architectural and structural drawing to know if the land is suitable for the building (courtship). If not okay, you go back to the drawing board or look for another piece of land. If the land meets your requirement you go ahead with laying the foundation (family vision). Most often, you would not find the land that meets all your original requirements, so you begin to adjust your priorities based on realities on ground (understanding and concessions during courtship). If you continue building (daily relational tasks) according to plan then it’s a bit straight forward, if you vary the building from the foundation, some unexpected complications arise and you keep trying to fit in the project as your imagination expands.
In the course of building, some events – social, economic or political -may occur that would affect your building project (loss of job, tragedies, finances, societal pressures, delayed conception) and you would have to go back to readjust your project strategies (open communication, realignment of family vision, spicing up your marriage). Once the building is complete (marital peace and stability), you rejoice (anniversaries) and you rest a while. But soon enough something calls for your attention: a chipped board, a plumbing job, a bulb that needs replacing or a torn piece of furniture (issues you need to resolve).
You may actually have completed the house before you realise or admit that the foundation was faulty (issues that threaten the peace and existence of your marriage), there is hope; but it would require extra investment. You can support the house with external columns and pillars (reconciliation, forgiveness, counselling), to make up for the week foundation.
Sometimes, you decide the house needs a facelift as other houses around you make yours seem old-school; repainting, new furniture, new kitchen or bathrooms (rejuvenating your relationship with those extra sparks).
When do you stop maintaining a house that gives you so much comfort and peace of mind? When you no longer care and want to move on, when you think the cost of maintenance outweighs the cost of acquiring a new one, when you think that peace and comfort can be substituted in another house or when you don’t value peace and comfort anymore, the list is endless.
But you know what? When you are old and sapped, familiarity is a luxury you will give anything to have. if you continue investing in the house, the memories of worthy sacrifice, peace, joy, love, comfort and laughter in the house keep you going and you can look back and say, ‘I did well.’