“For better AND for worse.”

Photo Credit: Jess Henderson Photography
Our Wedding Rings

It’s your wedding day, one of the happiest days of your life! The day you have probably imagined since you were a little girl. The day is full of nerves, excitement, emotions, and readiness for your future together. You get dressed, take pictures, make a toast, walk down the isle, and say I do. Your wedding has been perfect! You danced, spoke to your guests, thanked them for coming, and your special day comes to an end. You wake up, go on your honeymoon and enjoy your new life as husband and wife! Then, reality sets in and all the glitter wears off…

Photo Credit: Jess Henderson Photography

They say the first year of marriage is the hardest but my husband and I had been together 5 years before we got married so I thought, “eh! how hard can it be?! We’ve been together 5 years already and have a daughter.” People in today’s time make marriage not as big of a deal as it should be. It’s not “just a piece of paper.” It’s more than that. You have decided that this is the person you vow to spend the rest of your life with. I love being able to call him MY HUSBAND and him being able to call me HIS WIFE. There is something special about the meaning of two becoming one. Unfortunately too many couples today call it quits. Studies showed that about 40 to 50 percent of marriages ended in divorce in 2018 and 40% of first marriages ended in divorce. That number is shockingly high! Yes, marriage is hard! And the first year is not easy but, it’s “FOR BETTER AND FOR WORSE.”

Our first year of marriage was so hard. I didn’t ever understand why people would say that until I actually lived it! I think God makes your first year of marriage like a training course to help build the foundation for a lasting marriage. Even if you have been with that person for years, marriage is different and there are many obstacles you go through in year one. I was listening to a Podcast the other day and I don’t remember which one or who said it but the woman said, “Sometimes the secret to a long marriage is just waking up and say i’ll give it one more day.” That’s not you saying literally just one more day but if you take it day by day, that’s how some couples have lasted 50 and 60 years together. I tell myself all the time that there is always going to be someone younger, taller, smaller, or better looking than you but you have chosen the one who you want to spend your life with so through the good and the bad, you have to work to have the marriage you want. They say the grass isn’t greener on the other side, it’s green where you water it. You have to put the time into your marriage to grow it, tend to it, and make it last. Marriage is meant to be a serious commitment that you can’t just walk away from. What’s worth having doesn’t always come easy. My grandparents on my dad’s side were married 65 years and my grandparents on my mom’s side have been married 61 years and still counting. Getting advice from them and hearing their hard times along with their good inspired me. I want that kind of marriage. But sometimes, no matter how hard you try and work things out yourselves, you need some outside sources to help you reach those goals of having a lasting marriage.

My husband and I had a hard first year of marriage as I said previously and I was not liking where it was going. I mentioned counseling a few times and we finally decided to give it a shot around the fall of last year. A lot of people wouldn’t even admit to thinking about going to counseling but I can’t tell you how many people have actually admired or respected us for taking that step into actually going. My husband and I both come from parents who divorced and even though there is nothing wrong with deciding to go your separate ways, we wanted to try and “break the cycle” as our counselor said. I can’t say enough about how much I encourage counseling whether it be by yourself or with your significant other. Even if things aren’t bad, I get ideas and ways to approach different situations within our marriage that I maybe wouldn’t think to do before. Although we have so much more to learn and every day is hard when we are trying to deal with practicing what we go over in counseling, day to day stress, raising our daughter, finances, etc. we do want to make it work. Telling yourself that marriage isn’t just a piece of paper and that it is a lifelong commitment, puts its higher up on the importance scale, makes you want to try and make it better, and work through the issues together as a couple. I’m a hopeless romantic and live for “happily ever after” but I know that reality isn’t that. We fight, we disagree on sports teams, we get on each others nerves, there are days we don’t want to be around each other, but we refuse to quit. Two years of marriage isn’t very long and neither is 7 years together to some people but we have been through many triumphs in our years together and have made it through some really dark times so I think we have done pretty well for ourselves so far. We love each other and are trying our best to beat the statistics and work through the hard times to make it to 40, 50, and 60 year anniversaries. After all, we are only human. We aren’t perfect but we want to be perfect for our situation and for our family and there is always room for improvement in every situation or relationship.

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