What We’ve Learned During Our First 9 Years Of Marriage…

What We’ve Learned During Our First 9 Years Of Marriage…

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I swear this was just the other day…

Today Homeskillet and I will celebrate 9 years of marriage.  9 years of laughter.  9 years of ridiculous and some not-so ridiculous arguments.  9 years of booty grabs.  9 years of hugs.  9 years of high fives.

I’d being lying to you if I said it’s been easy.  It’s been infuriating (at times), hair-pullingly frustrating (just look at Homeskillet, he’s bald), emotionally draining (good and bad), and amazingly rewarding.

But easy?  Absolutely not.

We got married fairly young; I was 23 and he was 22.  We were fresh out of college and had all sorts of visions of marital sugarplums dancing in our heads.

We really didn’t have a clue of what marriage means or how it would all play out.  I think that a lot of couples get sucked into the fairytale facade only to find out that there’s a lot of hard work, year after year, that goes into creating a “happily ever after”.

I asked Homeskillet to sit down with me to nail down our biggest lessons learned over the past nine years and this is what we came up with.

What We’ve Learned About Marriage as a Couple

Marriage is hard, but what does that really mean?  Here’s what Homeskillet and I have learned over the years…

Living together is not as easy or awesome as it sounds.

I remember how I used to daydream about how wonderful life would be when we would be able to wake up to each other every single day of our lives for the rest of our lives. Aww!!!  But living with anybody in close quarters, no matter how much you love them, isn’t always a piece of cake.

Did you ever hear the adage “you don’t ever know someone until you live with them”?  That is truth.  I learned quickly that Homeskillet is, well, a sprawler (for lack of a better word).  He leaves stuff everywhere!!!!  And he learned that I am a loser…of things…of everything.

You will not agree on everything and that is okay.  Pick your battles.

This was a hard lesson for me to learn.  I argue persuasively and my end goal is typically to convert you to seeing that you’re wrong and I’m right.  Sound familiar?

Just because you’ve joined your life together doesn’t mean that you’ve merged yourselves into a one-dimensional world.  You’ll have your opinions and your partner will have their opinions, and that’s a beautiful thing.  Life is much more exciting when there’s something to talk about.

If you’re going to fight, fight fair.  Stick to the issue at hand.

Guilty as charged yet again!  Sometimes we get roped into fighting to win and we’ll pull out all the stops to get there.  That is just fighting dirty.  DIRTY.  And it’s wrong.  If you’re upset about someone leaving dishes in the sink, stick to the issue at hand…don’t take it back to the beginning of time!

Sticking to the issue at hand keeps a simple disagreement from inadvertently spiraling out of control and also lends itself to actually positively resolving the problem.

If you want something, say something.

This lesson we learned from our married and committed friends.  Homeskillet and I have beyond open communication.  It might not always be the most effective communication, but there is a lot…A LOT…of talking going on.  What takes us by surprise is how many of our couple-friends aren’t talking to each other.

They’re not talking about their feelings, sex, their dreams…nothing.  And both parties are often upset or mystified by the same things.  So please, for the love of Pete, talk.  About anything and everything.  No topic is off limits and there are no secrets.

hanging outNurture your friendship.

At the foundation of any marriage you have to have a solid friendship.  We are not just married; Homeskillet and I are best friends.  And I don’t say that lightly.  There were times where I had to take off my “wife” hat and put on my “friend” hat and say, “Dude, you’re not being a really good friend to me right now.”   Or, “Hey, as a friend, I want you to know that I’m here for you.”

It sounds corny, but we owe it to each other to protect and enrich our friendship.  To be friends.  To enjoy each other as individuals and not just in the scope of our roles as married partners.  Sometimes acting as friends can simplify a complicated situation.  Being married bring complexity.  Stepping outside of that can bring a fresh perspective on some tough moments in life.

I am so proud to be married to Homeskillet.  He is such a huge part of making me the person that I am today.

Happy 9th Anniversary, Homie!

What are your biggest lessons learned about being married?   How long have you been married?  What do you wish you would’ve been able to tell yourself before you got married?   Share it below!

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  1. Congrats you too!! And thanks for all the pointers, especially for me (still pretty much a brand-spanking-new milspouse!). :-)

    • Thank you, Rachel! We are still learning each other. Each year brings a new challenge and a new approach. It’s a work in progress. Wishing you many, many years of love and rewarding work!

  2. Congrats! After multiple deployment I would have to agree that communication is huge. Deployment where we were able to talk 4-5 days a week went much better than the early ones (where phones were not as readily available). I would also add to try and not fight while deployed. It might be hard to communicate soon enough to fix the issue.

    • Thanks! Open communication and the ability to see each other’s POVs definitely helps in a deployment situation. The who has it worse game is never a good one to play.

  3. Oh my, this was an amazing post. If I had to pick only one lesson I would say that it’s to be kind to each other. The husband and I love to tease each other, but sometimes the teasing can get to a point of hurt. You have to realize that even though you spouse may know very well when you are joking, they are still their own person and should be respected like you would a stranger. Be kind. Always.

    • That’s so true! It’s easy to get caught up in a little playful ribbing, but it can sting. And thank you for the compliment on the post! I’m off to snatch your asian avocado dressing recipe :)

  4. Congrats on your first 9 years! You sound like a very happy couple and be sure to plan something special for your 10th anniversary.

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