June 3, 2017
I woke up at 7 a.m. so excited (and very stressed). My wedding day. Looking back, I thought I knew what I was getting into- and I’ll give myself some credit. We’d dated over three years before we were married. I knew my betrothed and I knew that marriage wouldn’t be easy.
Now that we just passed the one year mark, I can say that I have a better understanding of what makes a marriage work! (Disclaimer: I am STILL learning every day!)
1. What it means to “be one flesh”
Growing up in a Christian household, you always associate marriage with the Bible verse:
” The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man.” That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.”
When I was younger and dating, I always heard this and usually thought of it in regards to physicality…but I didn’t realize how deeply rooted in truth this verse is in other ways. You have to share so much much in marriage. Yes, you share money, time, food, a home, a bed,
maybe a toothbrush on occasion, but you also share emotions, intellect, and spirit too.
Your spouse’s goals become your goals.
Their upsets become your sadness.
Their joy is also felt by you.
You share thoughts…hopes…fears…prayers.
When you’re dating, you mostly see the best of someone. Now you get to see all of them.
You are truly fused together in every way and your priorities change so much! It’s not about you or them…it’s about Us. This. We.
2. 100%, not 50%
You hear the saying, “In a relationship, you give 50/50.”
The best way to keep your marriage a success is to try to give 100%. I understand that some days you cannot give 100% because other life stressors are keeping you down. But that’s when your spouse’s overflow of percentage fills the gaps and lifts you up.
If you always try to give 100%, then hopefully your relationship will remain steadier than it would if you were giving 25% and your partner 50%. Now you only have 75/100!
But if you go above and beyond, then the chances of going beneath 100% decreases, and your marriage should be a lot more enjoyable.
Some days I can only give 10%. Tyler’s already giving 100%, so we’re still good- and vice versa.
3. It’s the little things
Go the extra mile and offer to do the dishes. Put down your immediate wants for your partner’s desires. Leave the last piece of pie for him. Put down the toilet seat for her. Thank your spouse when they serve you. Surprise them with a little note. Dance with her in the living room. Scratch his back in the grocery store line. ALWAYS try to out serve each other. These little moments add up, people!
4. What’s best for your “family”
You are now your own unit. A new family. Brand new set of priorities. Whole new ball game! When making decisions independently, think about how your choices will affect your new family. Going back to point 1- You are now one flesh. Work together. If it doesn’t add good things to your new family- you need to let it go!
Ex: When I was single, I was able to go out and buy certain things I wanted at the store and not think of anyone else. Now, I have to think about a budget, financial goals, etc.
5. Marriage is what you make it!
My marriage has been difficult- but it has also been the most fun I’ve ever had. Someone has my back! Someone wants to watch Netflix shows with me and make me laugh! I get to build somebody up every day! I get to cheer him on and watch him reach his goals! I get to raise a puppy with him! I get to watch him do silly dance moves while he does the dishes. It’s not always rainbows and butterflies, but it is the most fulfilling thing I’ve ever decided to do and I would still do it all again if given the choice! Make your marriage your priority. Serve your spouse. You get to live with your best friend, and that’s pretty dang awesome, y’all!