Three years of marriage doesn’t really seem like a significant chunk of time. I took a cake order today for someone celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary! My own grandparents are celebrating their 62nd wedding anniversary this summer. SO in comparison, three years seems like a blink of an eye. Yet, sometimes it’s hard for me to remember a time when I wasn’t married. Jess and I frequently say “Weren’t you there…?” and the other person is like “Nope, we hadn’t met yet.” and it seems really strange because now this person is so integral to your everyday life, and before they were just a *twinkle in your eye* WHICH IS A TERRIBLE PHRASE! Who came up with that? It makes you sound like a creepy Santa Claus. Better watch out, better not pout, Santa Claus has a twinkle in his eye! Over it.
Three years of marriage has taught me these THREE very important things (see what I did there?):
- Your daily habits/quirks can slowly drive your partner insane if you never address it. Your collection of water glasses on your bedside table? Infuriating. Your Kleenex’s that somehow end up in the laundry and covering the entire load in lint? Frustrating. Guitar picks getting stuck in the vacuum cleaner cause they’re EVERYWHERE! Annoying! Living together is very messy, and if you never address the things that bother you it can lead to bitterness or to you muttering under your breath in the corner. I guess this applies to roommates too, but that’s a little different cause you don’t always get to choose your roommates, so sometimes you have to listen to them talk about their recent nudist retreat while sipping kombucha (Thank you, craiglist subletter). Jess and I just start singing the chorus of this song really loudly when we’re trying to figure out who’s turn it is to wash all of the dirty, stinking, cavernous dishes:
“Honey I’ll do your dishes if you sweep the floor.
Baby I’ll feed the fishes if you shut the door.
Honey I’ll grant your wishes if you mow the yard.
Working together is easy. But living together is hard.
Living together’s so hard.”
Los Colognes, “Working Together,”
Conflict resolution that ends in a song is a win-win in my book. It also means that someday Jesse might overcome his life-long prejudice against musicals!! (Cause trying to change your spouse is a good idea) lol😂
2. Life’s hard enough. Don’t purposefully make it hard. Sometimes I get these weird ideas in my head like, “WE NEED A CHALLENGE!” and so I invent some arbitrary marriage test that usually ends up with me in tears and my spouse SUPER confused. Being straight up is so much more refreshing and healthy for relationships, especially when rooted in gentleness. Thankfully, we went through a lot right after getting married with my Mom’s illness and death so it’s more natural to let the small stuff slide and focus on what’s important: Our relationships with God, each other, and others. It helps me to keep my own brain and heart in check instead of “creating” drama or tension when I should probably just take a nap first before talking about it! I find a well-rested conversation has a lot more fruit than a tired one (if you can avoid it!)
3. Start Incorporating “Single Ladies’ Night,” into your social calendar. I’m not really sure where this one started. Maybe Beyonce came on the radio and Jess busted out some dance moves. Either way, it’s such a fun little tradition to have! I don’t care if you’re single, married, or it’s complicated. “Single Ladies’ Night” means you and your spouse/friend/compadre put your sweatpants on and go to your nearest dairy queen, get a blizzard, and then watch a stupid rom com or comedy afterwards. That’s it. I highly recommend it. Easiest date night ever. Never underestimate the power of a good laugh and DQ blizzards.
So yep, that’s the exhaustive list! I’m realizing as I finish this list, that a lot of the things I’ve learned can be applied to any relationship really, cause part of being in your 20’s is trying to figure out how to relate to other humans. I’d hate for someone to stop “growing” just because they think marriage is a requirement for spiritual or relational wholeness. Wether you’re married or not, what have you learned about human relationships recently?
Here’s a bunch of Wedding Photos to make you feel all nostalgic with me: