Today marks Andrew and my one year wedding anniversary. To celebrate, he took me on a surprise trip to Natural Bridge, Virginia where we enjoyed the weekend alone together. I’ll write more about our travels in later posts (with pictures!) but today I’d like to list off a few things I’ve learned in this first year of marriage.
First: it went by way too fast.
Actually, most time seems to be going too fast nowadays. I’ve been taking time to be more intentional with how I spend my time and who I spend it with and in a marriage, this is especially important. My time isn’t just mine anymore. I share it with my husband, and some days I need more of his time than he expects and has to change his plans. Likewise, sometimes he needs more time with me, so I change my plans.
It’s especially important to make time for each other and plan it in to your week because it doesn’t always happen naturally. Watch out, or you’ll lose a year of amazing memories you could have had.
Second, for us, the transition was not nearly as difficult as anticipated.
We work together like we were made for each other – and since we believe God planned for us to be together, perhaps we were in a way. I know not every relationship is like this, but I’m thankful for such an easy transition. The hardest part is definitely that I put so much pressure on myself to be a perfect housewife, forgetting there were weeks I worked more hours than Andrew did. Thankfully Andrew is amazing and is great at stepping in and helping out where needed, and also wonderful at gently reminding me he doesn’t expect me to do all the house work even if I expect that of myself.
Third, it’s amazing to have a partner who believes in you more than anything.
He treats me like the perfect mixture of a strong and yet delicate woman and I don’t know how he does it. I am extremely grateful for it, though.
Fourth, I learned not to listen to everything the internet says.
The internet tells you the first year is the hardest. If that’s true, the future is amazing. However, I’m sure we’ll have our trials in the future. Looking at this year from an outsiders perspective, perhaps we did have a rough year. My health, leaving not one but two churches, family drama, new job – it has been a full year. But thankfully, it’s been full of good times too and I’m excited to see what the next years hold.
Fifth, expectations set you up for failure.
Especially if the expectations are are outrageous or unsaid. How can you expect someone to live up to your expectations if you don’t tell them what they are? And what gives you the right to set those expectations of another person? Certainly not because you married them, that’s for sure. It’s best to give up the dreams in your head of life to God and let him shape life instead. Amazing things happen when you let God take charge, both in your life and marriage.
Sixth, your husband may have a totally different outlook on what has been learned in a year.
We’re currently driving home from Virginia (we are in West Virginia as I write) so I asked him what he’s learned about marriage this year. He chuckled, looked uncomfortable, and thought for a bit.
Finally, he said, “Eat the food your wife cooks for you.” (TRUTH) “Flowers are always a good idea, and make sure you spend time together”
I think we have both learned a lot and have grown as a couple. God has been good, and apparently has been teaching us some of the same lessons. I’m excited to see where this new year will lead. I know God will be with us every step of the way so no matter what, we’ll make it through.