Friday, March 20, 2009

Thoughts on Marriage 182 Days in...

I can't believe that 6 months ago, I was eating breakfast and preparing for my wedding ceremony at this time. I actually feel like a lot more time has passed then 6 months (is that bad?) :).

Growing up, my parents did not have the happiest of marriages. I truly think that my mom and dad were among the couples who got married for the wrong reason. My dad told me a few times the first time I was engaged that I needed to make sure I knew the person I was marrying. I think, he felt that he didn't know my mom well enough when they got married. And she would probably say the same thing. A common theme seemed to be that each of them thought the other changed after they got married, but really, it was that they were seeing the "true" personality of the person they had married that they had not had a chance to see before. The "true" person was not really someone they were compatible with, and therefore, they had a hard time accepting and relating to each other.

Not to say that my parents didn't care for each other, or love one another, but I don't believe they were in love with each other. This meant that they were often doing their own thing, and sometimes this meant they fought. They did not display affection often in front of my sister and I - not even by holding hands, or small touches. I do not fault them, as I believe they tried hard to make their marriage work, and believe me, it wasn't easy with my mom's illness, among other things.

Their relationship made me wonder how I would ever know if I found the right person. I was scared that I would marry the wrong one and end up trapped and unhappy in a marriage. This did not mean that I didn't want to get married - my dream was actually to get married young, and then be a young mother. But there was always this question of how would I know?

I thought I knew when I was 17. I met a man, who was quite a bit older then me (25, but, as I have always been told, despite looking young, I'm actually quite mature for my age, so I've always dated older guys). He became my first serious boyfriend, and pretty much told me from the beginning that he wanted to marry me. We dated for 4 years, and he proposed. I was certain that he was the one for me. We were often referred to as an old married couple...I guess because we were so comfortable in our relationship. And it wasn't a bad relationship, just as he wasn't a bad guy. The summer before we got engaged, I moved 7 hours away to attend grad school. Things started to change for me then. I became more independent. I really liked having that independence. I tried new things I couldn't do when I was with him, and I had fun. Although I accepted his proposal, I believe I knew deep down that it wasn't the right thing. At 21, I was too young, and still needed to experience things in my life...and to actually find me. After my dad passed away, I struggled with many things, and eventually, we broke off our engagement. It was one of the hardest things to do...to feel like I was making him feel bitter, and what if he never found someone else? After almost 6 years together, and many experiences, we had a hard time letting go. But eventually, I moved on.

And eventually, I met B. I can't say what was different about B. But, I knew that we understood each other and made each other laugh. A lot. We had fun when we were together and we wanted a lot of the same things from life. We struggled through some difficult experiences and he still wanted to be with me even when I was at my darkest point. I could just "be" with him. We didn't have to talk or do things, just sitting with each other was enough. He loved me despite my independence and all my other flaws. And somehow I knew he was the one for me.

Since I walked down the aisle 6 months ago, I have fallen even more in love with my husband. I didn't know that was possible. We have continued to build ourselves a home, had our first holidays as a married couple, and made many memories. We have challenged each other to grow and also to change for the better. We have set goals and work towards them together. We have learned to consider each other in important decisions, and celebrate when we accomplish great things. It hasn't always been smooth sailing either, but we have been challenged to work through our problems and concerns in the best possible ways, and have come out the better for it. I feel that we've been lucky in that it hasn't been hard to adjust to living with one another or sharing space, etc. I've learned that I really need to think about the other person that I am living with though, and to try and make his life easier. As much as I may hate cleaning, it isn't fair to ask him to do it when he works and I don't. I've really worked to make an effort to improve some of my more obvious flaws...

There is something very meaningful in knowing that someone loves you enough to commit to spend their lives with you. I think it creates a closer bond, and a deeper level of intimacy. I know that we will have many more challenges, successes and experiences ahead, but I look forward to all of them, and consider myself so lucky to have such a loving and wonderful husband.

11 comments:

Kati said...

Well, happy 6 months.. and many,many more to you!!

ann ominous said...

uuuuummmmmmmmmmmmm that's a beautiful post. :-) i hope that you let him read that some day!

Donn24g said...

This was a great post!!! WOW. You certainly sound like you have met a wonderful man. Reading that makes me excited for my wedding, and makes me feel stronger about my choice. Happy 6 month anniversary-- your wedding pics are so pretty!

Mama Wheaton said...

Beautiful post. Happy 6 month Anniversary and may you have many more.

Aleta said...

Happy 6 month anniversary! I'm a little more than 3 months into our marriage and I found myself nodding in agreement with much of what you wrote. I hope that any woman (and man) before they marry - to live on their own and know what they want in life and what they want in a partner and to be honest with herself or himself when searching considering someone for a spouse. If you do that ~ then you'll find yourself in such an incredibly happy place. I'm fortunate and incredibly lucky to be with Greg. There's a bond that is so strong, so right...

Kristen said...

What a beautiful photo...congratulations on 6 months!

Mr. C and I will be celebrating 9 years very soon. It is the 2nd time a round for us both and we dated/lived together for 6 years before we married (together 15 years..still amazes me) It is very comforting to know that Mr. C has seen me at my worst and still wants to be with me.

I'm so glad you found happiness and true love!

Happy Spring!

hellosweetworld said...

Awww, that's soooo sweet! Congrats. I hope the next 6 months and way, way, way beyond is even better for you!

Blue said...

wolfy, you're an old soul. i loved your introspective reflection on your first engagement and your relationship with b. i remember that feeling of being amazed you can love someone even MORE than you did when you married them.

people really do change. it seems like every decade we reinvent ourselves and evolve in significant ways. sometimes it's hard to adjust to the evolution. but having a team attitude, and protecting your relationship against all threats is the key. doc and i have been a couple for 22 years now, which is weird because i swear i only feel like i'm 26 or so. how is it possible? i can't let myself think about the numbers :-) but anyone will tell you that change is part of relationships. some you like and others you don't. enjoy the peaks and ride out the valleys, cause if you do, there will be vistas more glorious ahead.

happy 6 month anniversary! and happy birthday you cute thing. ♥

Juggling Thoughts said...

It's so nice to meet you! I am a newlywed myself...only married about 8 months! We should share wedding stories someday!

Your pictures are beautiful :) Stopping by from SITS today, but I should be back!

My personal blog:
www.finewire.blogspot.com

Merry Christmas to you and your hubby!

Amie said...

Visiting from SITS today, thanks for sharing

Karen said...

Congratulations on 6 months of wedded bliss! You have a lovely blog and those are gorgeous photos.

Stopping in from SITS. Hope your first holiday as a married couple was everything you hoped it would be!

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