How is a married couple like a herd of African wildebeests and zebras?
Herds of African wildebeests and zebras migrate together because their strengths compensate for their weaknesses, making them more compatible and less vulnerable to attack. Wildebeests (also called gnus) have poor eyesight, but they have a keen sense of smell, whereas zebras have good eyesight and a poor sense of smell.
Each group has its unique set of qualities to benefit the other. Together, they can fend off enemies who threaten their survival.
Like the yin-yang symbol, they are complementary.
Rather like in a good marriage. . .
In our marriage, I’m the “wildbeest.” struggling with poor eyesight, yet I have bionic ears (thanks to my mother’s genes).
My husband Cliff is hearing impaired but sharp-eyed, essential for a visual artist.
We compensate in other ways too
Accommodation, another hefty “-tion” word, is a first cousin to compensation and a boon to harmony.
As the story goes, my Uncle Clyde Metzler, a pastor who officiated at many weddings at Hernley Mennonite Church near Manheim, PA, told the starry-eyed couple, “There are two bears in your marriage: Bear and forbear. Remember that!” Of course, such wisdom would be true for relationships of all kinds.
- Give your partner the bigger piece of chicken or lemon meringue pie.
- Stifle words of contempt. You can’t take them back. Find another way to express yourself.
- Take a walk.
- Get some sleep. Maybe you’re just tired, as I suggest in this blog post.
I Corinthians 12: 6 There are many ways in which God works in our lives, but it is the same God who does the work in and through all of us who are His.
~ The Living Bible
This year, we celebrate 53 years of marriage. Like every other couple, we have lived through tough times and have had our share of ups and downs. Nevertheless, he is still the one I would choose to be quarantined with!