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Monday, July 11, 2016

Marriage is...

I sit here, on the morning of our first anniversary, reflecting. I have written already of the many things that have been happening for Brandon and I in the last year. I have written already of the many things we have been through that make us a strong team. 

Today, I am thinking about all the things we were told marriage would or would not be. Marriage is life changing. Marriage is hard. Marriage is not a compromise. It is either a lose-lose or a win-win. Marriage is not something to be taken lightly. Marriage is a blessing. 

Today, I am reflecting on all the things we have found marriage to be in our first year. Some align with the advice we had been given and some are far from it.

First, marriage is a compromise. A friend of ours told us, quite passionately, about a retreat he had gone on that preached how marriage was not a compromise, it was always a win-win or a lose-lose. He was so adamant about that making sense, but I remember leaving his apartment with Brandon and trying to sort through that logic.

Going into marriage thinking that every decision you make together will end in a loss for both of you or a win for both of you is going to set you up for frustration. Sure, its a nice sentiment to think that if your spouse doesn't get exactly what they wanted and take a "loss" you will also be taking a "loss" because marriage is a partnership. The reality however, is that marriage is a partnership, but if you go through life thinking that unless your partner is "winning" you will not be, you will find yourself very conflicted.

You are two different people. I have different ideas than Brandon does about a lot of things. If we always go with what I want or always go with what he wants, where does that leave the other person? Sometimes you have to take a loss for your partner to win. Sometimes you have to let yourself win and accept that your partner is losing. Sometimes you both don't get what you want, but end up with something just as good. That is a partnership.

Second, marriage is not something to be taken lightly. Brandon and I knew for a long time that we would marry each other. When we did, we were young newlyweds for this generation. He was twenty-three and I was still twenty-two and I am sure that many people questioned why we were getting married so young.

Here's the thing, when you find someone who you can see being your partner through life, through the good and the really really bad, life might get hard sometimes, but your marriage will not be. So often people decide to marry solely because of love. Love is only part of a marriage. Brandon and I love each other very much, but we also know that whatever life throws at us, we can handle and will handle together.

Finally, a year goes by really fast. Some weeks you will feel like they are being dragged out, but by the end of it, you will question what happened to all your time. In one year, Brandon and I accomplished A LOT and looking back there are so many moments I wish we could slow down. Our honeymoon. Hunting for our first house together. Our wedding day.

Marriage is life changing because you get to spend your life with someone who loves you, supports you, and will be there with you through it all. The biggest thing I have learned this year is to be present in every moment together because they go so quickly. Take time to just be together and continue to view your marriage and your time together as a blessing because it is.
July 11, 2015

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