Today is my fourth wedding anniversary. <insert gushing, loving comments here that I know you all don’t want to hear>
Our journey together really started 10 years ago. We were innocent young high schoolers who fell madly in love with each other. It sounds like something out of a movie but that’s seriously what happened. We started dating when I was in 10th grade. I knew two weeks after we started officially started dating that I was going to marry him. We got engaged between my junior and senior year of high school and then we waited until I graduated from college to get married. I fast tracked through college (graduated in 3 years) and got married the following October.
To say I completely live my life to love my husband and our son would be the understatement of the century. It’s been like that from the beginning. We’ve always been inseparable.
Here’s some things I’ve learned along the way about my relationship and relationships in general:
1. You’re never too young.
I can’t tell you how many people doubted us. I had several teachers try to save my heart from being broken and tell me that our relationship wouldn’t last and that we didn’t need to be so intense. Our parent’s didn’t really mind. My parents were caught up in their divorce and really didn’t pay much attention to us. His parents are laid back and easy going. I totally see where our teachers were coming from, butttt it was very discouraging. You start to doubt what you know in your head and heart as being true. Just because you are young doesn’t mean you don’t have the maturity to know how you feel about someone.
2. You are going to have disagreements.
Just because you are in love (or love something. There’s a difference in being in love and loving someone I think) doesn’t mean you won’t have disagreements. You won’t think about things in exactly the same way and you’ll have to have compromise in your relationship to manage those disagreements. The best way to handle these disagreements is to talk. There were two different dynamics in my household growing up. My mom screamed and my dad did the silent treatment. I thought it was perfectly natural to have raised voices and just explode on each other. I thought that was a normal way to handle a disagreement, until I married my husband. We had disagreements before we got married don’t get me wrong and I would react the same way my mom and dad did. I would scream at him or give him the silent treatment. It wasn’t until we got married and my husband sat me down and explained things that I realized my parents relationship was (obviously now) not a healthy one. There is no need to scream at someone. If you can’t have a rational conversation with the person you love then you need to take a moment and come back later and discuss. I think talking was the biggest change when we got married by far. We seriously don’t have that many arguments now. If he does something I don’t agree we with talk about it and vice versa.
3. People will always compare themselves to you.
That’s just human nature. People are constantly going to compare your relationship to theirs and their relationship to yours. Try not to get wrapped up in it. I always thought I was going to marry someone who was super romantic and bring me flowers all the time and tell me every day how much he loved me yada yada yada. But that didn’t happen. My husband is the furthest thing from being romantic, but that’s ok. Don’t compare your spouse to Susie’s husband down the street. Compare your spouse to your own needs. If he’s meeting those needs then you have a good marriage. Don’t compare and don’t try to change.
4. Don’t change your spouse
You fell in love with your spouse for a reason. Remember that reason. Truly accept them for all that they are and don’t try to change someone. It only creates tension (I learned that one from my parents). I’ve been blessed that my husband has never tried to change me. He’s always accepted me for me and for that I will always be grateful. Take the good with the bad.
5. Always work together.
You are a unit. Act like it. Ask for advice from your spouse. Show them that y’all are in everything together. Hard moments are what defines you and as a unit you can stand more than just handling something alone. I’ll never forget when I was diagnosed with MS. It was before we even got married. I gave him the option to leave. He didn’t take it. We were a unit forever and always.
I can’t wait to add more to this list in another six years. At that time I’ll have been with my husband half of my life which is hard to believe. That next year I will have known more of my life with him that without him and I couldn’t and wouldn’t have it any other way.