And just like that…Mike and I have been married for two years.
In the last two years we’ve fought, made up, celebrated, cried from sadness, and laughed so hard that we started to cry. It’s been one crazy, amazing roller coaster and I love every bit of it. I wouldn’t change any of the “bad” parts because they always lead to important lessons for us to learn from for the future. In celebration of our two year wedding anniversary I’m sharing 5 important lessons we’ve learned…
1. It’s better to go to bed angry than to to fight while exhausted.
Forget everything you’ve ever heard. It is okay to go to bed angry! I know you’re shocked right now and question every piece of advice you’ve ever been given regarding marriage. At first we tried to always resolve our arguments before going to sleep, but most of the time it was easier said than done. We’d go back and fourth and sometimes we were able to resolve the problem, but for more intense disagreements it became an even bigger issue the longer we hashed it out. As the clock ticked on things would just get worse. We were getting tired and more aggravated; our conversation was becoming pointless. We found it more effective to revisit the problem after sleeping on it and waking feeling refreshed and refocused.
2. Choose your battles wisely.
The garbage is full, there’s an empty roll of toilet paper in the bathroom, and there is a stack of dishes in the sink. Before starting up a nag-fest, think about how important these inconveniences actually are. Maybe you can pick one of the chores and kindly ask that your partner do it. Perhaps a “Honey, would you mind taking taking out the trash before dinner? There is no room for me to add to it” would work? I bet almost anything he will respond positively if you ask the right way. But if you demand it be done and throw out accusations and insults I can promise you you’ll start a war and your trash will still be full.
Sometimes it’s not even worth bringing it up. He left his clothes on bathroom floor like 4 feet from the hamper…yes it’s worth and eye roll, but it’s just as easy for you to throw the clothes in the hamper. Save the nagging, save your marriage. Besides, there is probably a million and one little things you do that drive them crazy that they’re not brining to your attention. Part of the reason you got married was to have someone to love and care for…part of that is accepting their flaws and loving them through it all.
3. Date. Date. Date.
I’m the date queen y’all! Wives date your husbands, husbands date your wives. Dates are for every stage of your relationship (not just the beginning) and they are so important. They help reconnect you, they help to keep things fun, and they show that you still care about each other. There are times when Mike and I get busy with life – I have a bunch a social commitments lined up or he is working tons of overtime shifts and we’re left with little time for each other. When that happens our relationship and quality of life suffer a bit. Once we take time to plan something fun or exciting things get back to normal or even better. Be creative with your dates and try to experience new things together.
4. Forgiveness means agreeing to move forward.
Marriage comes with it’s ugly moments. Occasionally, we say things we don’t mean, we raise our voices, or we unintentionally hurt our spouses. When those things happen apologies are a necessity and forgiveness has to happen in order for your marriage to move forward. However, once you accept your spouse’s apology whatever happened or was said goes in a vault to never be brought up again. You can’t say you forgive someone and then use their mistake against them when it’s convenient for you. Forgiveness means your agreeing to move forward – period.
5. Do things you don’t want to do for your spouse.
As humans, I think we are naturally a little self-centered. We like what we like and we get stuck in our ways. For example, I hate horror movies anything gory or scary I’m not into at all. Unfortunately, for me my husband loves them. Sometimes, that means I have to suck it up and watch a movie I have no interest in seeing. My husband appreciates it, takes notice, and usually that gets reciprocated to me by Mike doing something for me that he’s not really into. So everyone wins you do this. After all, when you met you would feign interest in their hobbies and interests to impress them and it was no big deal then. Marriage shouldn’t mean that courtship ends, you still need to win your spouse over every day, that’s what keeps love alive!