On this day ten years ago…..
We got married.
Ten years, geez. I feel like it should be commemorated a bit differently than it is. Shouldn’t we all gather together and have a meal and eat cake? Shouldn’t we go on a big trip? (Oh wait, yeah we are!!!) I mean ten years isn’t common anymore is it?
More like ten minutes.
Our marriage has been up and down, side to side, it falls back on the straight and narrow and then we hit potholes.
I’ve talked about the big 10 with friends and have been met with various discussion. The most common? No one has had a fairy tale and not one person would say that they didn’t doubt their decision to wed their spouses.
One friend said they spent number ten having a long talk about whether they would stay wed.
Another friend said they decided to try counseling at number ten.
A scoop of Rocky Road for everyone and freely admitting it. All those folks are still married now at 12 and 16 years. I don’t know if they are happy but I can attest to you that even though we have had our dark moments we are happy.
Looking back I think its important I say this to newlyweds….
- You won’t fall in love every day. You will wake up some mornings and see each other and want to scratch eyeballs out. Your partner will piss you off on the regular and you will piss them off. Other mornings you will wake up beaming and pride and joy over your “other half” and everything they do will be charming in your eyes. These marriage deals are balances of good and bad – make sure you see the balance.
- Pick your battles. Not everything is worth an argument. Some of the pettiest crap has been argument material for us. If you’re having an issue with your betrothed then you need to just go ahead and air it and try to do it peacefully.
- Speaking of that, if you’re like me and go from calm to boiling in ten seconds flat, try to slow yourself down. Easier said than done, yes I know. Learn the importance of walking away from a situation to simmer down. Trips to Walmart or Target generally cool me right down! You may laugh but if I can get in my car and go walk through a store and browse at crap I don’t need I calm right down! The dog park has the same effect. It’s glorious.
- If you’re like my husband and super passive aggressive; work on airing your grievances immediately instead of letting them destroy your relationship.
- Don’t rush into having kids. You need to have your time one on one before you introduce offspring to the situation. You need to travel, have your finances in order, and be ready for the challenge of parenting. I mean challenge. I was actually cooking a bun when we married so we never experienced marriage minus kids. It has made our experience a little different and sometimes I wonder what it would be like to have a different start. However, our start was for a reason and I guess I truly cannot complain. We wouldn’t trade our overly dramatic, disrespectful preteen for anything…..right? HA!
- No secrets. Never, ever, ever keep a thing from your spouse. Let them know everything. Don’t hide purchases, don’t hide bills, don’t hide secrets you have with your friends, your partner is your PARTNER. Nothing good is built on secrets. Make decisions together. Air grievances openly. Talk, talk, talk.
- Compromise. Two people become one (blah blah blah) but that doesn’t mean they suddenly have the same personality, likes, and dislikes. You should have your freedom to do the things you enjoy and your spouse should too. That doesn’t mean if you’re polar opposites you do all the fun stuff separate. Spend time doing things with him that he enjoys even if you would rather have a dental check up instead of partaking in that activity. Guys, do it for your girls. Yeah, you hate shopping but you can go with her one Sunday a month. If you do all your “fun stuff” separate then you’re going to drift apart. My favorite part of this is that you eventually find out you like to do the stuff your spouse does. I used to love to refinish furniture – my husband joined me in it and now I never get to because he took over my hobby. Oh, wait, bad example. <wink>
- Go on dates. Never stop dating. Date all the times you can. Oh I mean date your spouse not have a side piece.
- Keep the romance. She likes flowers? Send them. He likes chocolate chip cookies? Bake them. Recently, out of no where, my husband took a piece of paper and wrote I (Heart) U on it and it put it at the kitchen window. He did it while I was still sleeping and while he was leaving for work. That’s simple and funny and maybe childish but it was what I needed.
- Pray. The only thing that has saved my marriage the times that I felt I was finished was prayer. When things got tricky or just plain sad I would pray – and it was ugly and it was emotional and if you saw it you may cry. But I prayed hard for intervention on my part and his part. I cannot tell you that those prayers were not answered because I was given action beyond those prayers. I did some things differently than my hot headed self would generally go about doing things. Today, I still pray for my husband and my marriage. We are not in a bad place – we are smooth sailing – and I like to think that my faith plays a big role in that.
So here’s to a decade of being Mr. & Mrs. – two kids – a house that has caused thorns bigger than missiles in our sides – three jobs – a multitude of fire pit evenings – annoying the pee outta one another – rolling with laughter – and about a bajillion memories made.
Happy Friday –