Lauren Miller knocked it out of the park again with today’s post! Check out Seth and Melanie’s episode on what they wish they had known before they got married. Then come back here to read Lauren’s thoughts on the topic. Then you can go look at Melanie’s Fruit Salad pdf to help you and your partner figure out your MWE.
Most young women spend countless hours dreaming of their wedding day, me not so much.
While my female counterparts were thinking up the color schemes, flowers, and dresses they wanted on their big day; I was thinking about meals, movie marathons and moments I would share with my husband one day. I never thought marriage would be a perpetual state of bliss but I also was not prepared for the pain that came as we entered into the awkward dance of two becoming one.
I had a broad idea of marriage concepts things such as:
Communication, you know the thought process: Men are from Mars and women are from Venus. Clearly two different languages are being spoken in the home.
Being quick to let the “little” things go. There is truth in the thought process of not allowing little things to keep you from connection but when you disregard feelings you have for the sake of connection you lie to yourself and your partner.
To never go to bed angry, is good in theory but have you ever fought when you are exhausted? Sometimes going to bed may actually be of benefit. A rested brain is a new brain.
Somethings I didn’t realize were: Pride is sneaky. forgiveness is hard, emotions are fleeting, and boundaries are needed.
Pride is sneaky.
Early on in my marriage I felt very strongly that God had said to not allow my pride to keep me from a successful marriage and life with my husband. More than once in the middle of fights I would be reminded of what I had believed I had heard and would (typically) try to adjust. Choosing not to dig my heels in, letting things go and doing my best to give even when I didn’t want to. The problem is for years my perception of pride was out of whack and my life was riddled with false humility which is just a nice way of saying prideful.
I quickly became a doormat for the “sake of my marriage” believing if I gave all of me that it would make life work. Everything in me over the years slowly died and instead of the robust marriage I was hoping for we were barely holding on.
Forgiveness is hard.
When you are doing life with someone day in and day out it can begin to wear you down. Little things can easily turn into big things. Repeated offenses become perpetual festering wounds and that once far fetched story of Jesus telling Peter to forgive 70×7 (Matthew 18:22) now is something you must fight to practice.
Emotions are fleeting.
While being fleeting emotions are often cyclical as well. You will not alway have the ooey gooey, lovey dovey, euphoric loving feeling that got you to the altar. Quite the contrary to be honest, there are days you will question how you ended up married to this seeming stranger. But there is something to remaining because at some point you will end back up at the love filled high.
Just like the happy emotions of love; negative emotions of anger, sadness, grief, frustration are also going to be weaved in and out of your relationship. There have been days that I have been so angry at my husband that I have been convinced I will always feel that way but I don’t. Time, effort, hormonal shifts all play a part in my sometimes ever changing feelings towards the man I vowed to be with for better or worse.
I have heard people who are 30-years down the road in marriage tell young marrieds that, “you just have to get here” when asked how they made it to 30. There is something to that, if you jump ship when marriage no longer is easy and lovey you may not make it past 30 days. There are some things you have to just walk through to get to the other side of.
Boundaries are needed.
I was 21 when I got married and I didn’t have a clue of what a marriage was to look like. In my mind we were becoming one and that meant smoothie, not fruit salad. (If you haven’t heard of that concept go take a listen HERE ) Boundaries appeared pointless. No longer did I guard time for myself and I essentially attempted to mutate into whoever I thought my husband wanted me to be. This lead to dysfunction in a lot of areas but ultimately it lead to me losing me. I stopped pursuing things I loved thinking I was helping my marriage but in reality I was inflicting pain not only on myself but also my spouse.
Learning where I was, he was and we were changed just about everything. I was able to honor my husband in a new way while giving myself space to just be without the pressures of being a wife. This is not about secrecy or disunity but being my own person within marriage.
If you are not married yet learn from the things I have fought to discover. If you are married if you are married make sure to comment what is something YOU wish you had known at the start.
Featured Image by Maddie – follow her on Instagram