In August, my husband and I will celebrate 10 years of marriage! 10 whole years, a decade! We were 10 years younger when we decided we wanted to spend our lives together. We have been through a lot of things I would never have imagined. We have spent about 3 years of those 10 apart. That seriously breaks my heart but at least it wasn’t three years in a row. We have both grown and changed over the years. I can now look at my husband and instead of saying, “I want to grow old with you” I can say, “I love growing old with you.” Because let’s face it, when I look at our wedding pictures I see two younger versions of ourselves and it is very obvious that time has passed and that we are in the process of growing old together.
So what have I learned about marriage the last 10 years?
1) What works for one couple might not work for another. You hear a lot of advice about what a marriage should look like or what you should do about x,y or z. From TVs in your room to how often you go on a date! It’s nice to get advice about marriage but it might not all apply and that is okay.
2) Deployments can make a marriage stronger. I believe this can happen because it happened to us. I feel very lucky for this because I know how hard deployments can be on marriages. I am just thankful that deployments have not pushed us apart but made us stronger.
3) Kids change your marriage. They do. From what you do on a daily basis to how you view your spouse. When we had kids I got to see my husband in a new “Daddy” role. He gets to see me as a “Mommy.” It is different from our “husband” and “wife” roles.
4) Laughing together is good. My husband loves to make me laugh. Even when I am mad he can seem to make me smile. It’s good for us.
5) Let the little things go. I can find myself getting frustrated about the littlest things but I have learned it is best just to let them go.
6) I can do things without him. When he is gone, I can function. I can my kids and I halfway around the world without him. I can give birth without him. I can do a lot on my own. Doesn’t mean I like to do things this way, but I can.
7) Sometimes life gets really really hard. Sometimes it just isn’t the way I would have planned it. That can be so frustrating but in the end, I am glad we have each other to get through it.
8 ) When you were raised differently you will see the world differently and that might be challenging. We were both raised by parents who loved us and loved God very much but the overall our childhoods were very different and we sometimes see things very differently. This can be frustrating but we just have to take a step back and realize where the other person is coming from.
9) I made the right choice. Way back in 2001 when I said yes to marry this man, I made the right choice. He is the right one for me and I am the right one for him.
10) Trust goes a very long way. We both trust each other. I trust him, he trusts me. I can’t imagine going through what we have been through without it.
How long have you been married? What have you learned in that time?