By Kermit Rowe
Encompass Relationship Facilitator
If you are looking for objective, empirical evidence that physical fitness leads to marital happiness and endurance, you’ll be looking long and hard. There just isn’t much out there.
But observation and personal experience offer plenty of evidence that it does. Focus On The Family, one of the preeminent marriage ministries of the 20th and 21st centuries, offers this in a recent article: “Exercise isn’t the answer to every marriage issue, but it will help you to bond on a new level and establish invaluable disciplines, such as perseverance and goal-setting, that can help combat marital fatigue.”
By: Abby Glaser
Encompass Community Advocate
As we continue to dive into our topic this month, "New," I would love to explore some ways that old relationships may have something new! I’ve had some experience with this recently regarding a Christmas gift I purchased for my Mom. If we’re talking about relationships, there are none “older” than the ones with our parents! I’m sure if asked, I may have said in the past that I know everything there is to know about my Mom. I’ve discovered recently how untrue that is! For Christmas this year I bought my mom a subscription to a platform that facilitates her sharing all kinds of memories from her life in one place. At the end of the year it puts all of those stories together into a bound book about her life, for us to share! You may remember Lavern talking about his book in a prior blog post, A Powerful Present of Presence.
Ahhhh, February- a month of ROMANCE. Each week in February we're discussing the seasons of romance in marriage. After visiting the pre-marital, honeymoon, "with kids at home," and empty nest seasons, this week we're ready to find out what happens romantically in the golden years.
By Lavern Nissley
Executive director of Encompass Connection Center
This may come as a surprise, but it IS possible to experience romance in marriage after age 60. It's certainly different from romance in the early years of marriage where it doesn't take much for things to get hot and steamy. Perhaps a metaphor would be appropriate. Young married romance is like a microwave, while senior adult married romance is more like a crockpot. Both can bring about tasty edibles, but the latter is a more deliberate, extended process.
It's the latter of these two metaphors we want to dive into. How can you keep love alive after decades together as a couple and as your physical energy and health levels decline? Are there ways to grow in body/soul/spirit attractiveness as we age?
By: Ronda Nissley, Co Director
Ahhhh, February- a month of ROMANCE. Each week in February we're discussing the seasons of romance in marriage. After visiting the pre-marital, honeymoon, and "with kids at home," seasons, this week we're ready to find out what happens romantically after the kids leave home! Next week, we’ll finish with the golden years.
Romance…. When the kids leave home
We’ve seen it many times. Kids go off to college, they move out and start their own lives. What was once a flurry of daily activity that centered around the children has now ceased. The days of shuttling kids to school; attending sporting events; washing mountains of laundry; re-stocking the refrigerator and pantry (daily); de-cluttering dropped book bags and coaching our children through life’s challenges eventually do come to an end.
Suddenly, parents find themselves alone again with the realization that they hardly know, let alone like their partner anymore. It doesn’t have to be that way!
By Encompass Outreach Group
When you get married, you get your first experience of having in-laws with your partner’s parents. This can often be a time filled with frustration and complications. However, once you have children and they grow up, get married, and have families of their own, you suddenly become the mother-in-law or father-in-law that you once had to deal with. Here’s how to be a good in-law when your child has a family of their own:
By Abby Glaser
For many of us the new year brings reflection and reevaluating of goals and priorities. A new year brings a new slate to determine what we do and who we will be. My family finds ourselves looking at this more than usual as we’ve lost two family members already in the new year. There are few experiences in life that will force you to evaluate your own legacy than losing a loved one. What will be said about you in your eulogy?
By Lavern Nissley
Ever thought about what you'll leave for the next generation? What you'll be honored for as your life winds down?
We celebrated the 90th birthday of Ronda's mom this past weekend. Her father isn't far behind in age, turning 90 next August. Being together with Ronda's siblings in inlaws was inspirational and gave me a profound appreciation for the legacy these two people are leaving.
By Lavern Nissley
I watched a hush fall over the waiting area of the License Bureau as an elderly couple slowly crossed the huge distance from the door to the clerk. Holding each other for stability, him with a red-tipped cane, her with a handful of documents, both with eyes forward, they seemed to reflect decades of memories. A picture of lasting commitment.
Who was this couple? And why did they attract the attention of all in the room?
Lavern & Ronda Nissley are co-directors of Encompass. Married since 1978, both enjoy coffee, riding their tandem bicycle and working together to build strong relationships.