Most Likely To Succeed (but not together)

Nathan and I graduated from the same high school in the same year, where we were both voted “Most Likely To Succeed”. Together. However, it turns out we were not actually most likely to succeed together statistically speaking.

Because we are both firstborns. Over a decade ago I read Kevin Lehman’s birth order book. It was a book that influenced and has helped me in child-raising probably more than any other. But it also talked about how birth order affects marriage.

This book said that the worst possible marriage combination is a first born and a first born. Lehman said these were the couples most likely to have problems and most likely to be in his office for counseling. I remember reading that a decade ago and saying to myself “Wow, I’m so glad we don’t have that problem.” That was pre-living overseas, having a traveling husband, raising teens and a lot of life in general.  Recently as I reread this section of the book about the tendencies of firstborns and the issues those tendencies can create in marriage, I laughed and laughed and laughed. Because these issues are definitely the cause of most of our conflicts.

We are definitely not “Most Likely To Succeed Together”. Apparently, we are least likely based on these statistics. Statistics that I might add are slightly depressing.  Everything that I’ve read and found on the subject basically says if you are a firstborn dating a firstborn, RUN. Run away. Well, it’s a bit too late for that at this point.

Basically, I guess this makes us crazy people who God decided were up for a special challenge.  Because we are committed, we are tough and hard-working, and we would never quit on this thing. We are two people who choose to love every day, because that is what marriage requires. The world likes to tell us what is supposed to work and not work.  In this day and age, anyone who stays married is beating the odds.  God often has another plan than what the world says should work, and aren’t we glad? Shout out to all of you who choose to work hard for your marriages, and show the world that God’s ways are not the world’s ways.

Sixteen years of marriage later, our daughter Abby had us in a photo shoot where we decided to take cheesy engagement-like photos.
Sixteen years of marriage later, our daughter Abby had us in a photo shoot where we decided to take cheesy engagement-like photos.

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