17 years a wife
So, another year has passed and my husband and I have celebrated another anniversary. This is number 17. Woohoo! We haven't reached 20 yet, but we are gaining on it. This year's anniversary was a far cry from last year's. If you want to read about that one, you can do that here. This year we didn't do anything special. We talked about doing something special, but in the end, it was just a regular Sunday.
Seventeen years is quite a long time to be married nowadays. Of course there are marriages that are longer than ours, but there are also those that are shorter. Longevity is always desired, but unfortunately doesn't always come to fruition. Are you asking how one stays married so long? Well, even if you aren't asking, I'll tell you what I have learned. By the way, I'm not saying that our way is the best or better than someone else's, but it works for us. As I like to say, we're not perfect, but we're perfect for each other. Basically that means we've gotten used to each other's crazy and have no desire to try and learn anybody else's crazy.
You may have already heard this one, but communication is very important. I believe that God has a very interesting sense of humor because of the way he made man and woman. The communication skills of a woman differ so much from a man and vice-versa. There have been so many times when my husband would ask me a question that I would answer and he would then look at me like I was crazy. Evidently I answered incorrectly. Basically I would answer the question he literally asked, but he didn't ask it the right way to get the real answer he was looking for. Like the other day he asked "Do you have a key like this on your keychain?" while showing me the key. I said "No." Later he says "I can't find the key that goes to this lock." After looking at the lock, I tell him "Oh, I know where that key is." See what happened there? He wanted to know where the key was, but that is not what he asked me nor did he show me the lock at the time. Sometimes it can be so exasperating. (Insert eye roll)
Ok, we're still working on our communication, but we do manage to get through it. Compromise is another important skill. You just have to realize what is and is not important to you and whether or not you feel like fighting over whatever. Some things just aren't worth it. Why win the battle when it's going to cause a war later? I'm pretty easy going, so compromise isn't difficult for me. Some things just aren't that important.
Do not allow resentment to set in. You know how your spouse can do something that just irritates the snot out of you, but you may not say anything. After a while, whatever it was continues to grow and fester inside of you. Don't let that happen. If your spouse does something that is hurtful or angers you or even makes you feel bad in any way, say something. Resentment is an awful thing and you can't let that get a hold of you. I'm not a fan of confrontation, so this used to be an issue for me. Over the years, I've learned to work through it and say what I need to say.
Honesty is the best policy. I'm pretty sure you already know this, but it doesn't hurt to state it. Now it's important to be honest without having to be brutal. Don't tell each other what you think they want to here, because they may really want the truth...that's why they are asking you and no one else. If you can't expect honesty from someone you see naked quite often, then who can you get it from? I remember my husband and I were going to a formal dinner and I tried on this little black dress that I had for a few years. It was a cute cocktail dress and I had only worn it about once or twice, so I figured I could still wear it. When I asked my very honest husband how it looked, his exact words were "It looks nice. It looked better a few pounds ago, but it still looks nice." I burst out laughing when he said that. What can I say, I thought it was funny. That's something else, do not take yourself or them too seriously. Life is short and we don't stay young forever. Whatever they tell you, believe it is out of love and that they feel comfortable enough with you to tell you the truth. If you want to be lied to about your weight or your looks, then ignore what I just said. Besides, they hopefully already know how to respond to you in the best way possible.
After 17 years I still love my husband very much. I'm also still in love with him and I even like him most of the time. He ticks me off and I'm sure I do the same to him, but it doesn't interfere with our relationship. All marriages will have ups and downs, but it's up to you to navigate those rough waters the best way you can and make sure you do it together.
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