Thursday, March 5, 2009

Five years of sharing my bed with a boy: A Review

I know I've blogged about how I found Stuart and our wedding day and all that before. I think I'll write about something a little different this anniversary. 

2008. A difficult year. A very difficult year, maybe the hardest I've had. With those difficult trials come the opportunity to grow. Many of the things we went through are very personal. We've gained and lost together. We've struggled and overcome. We've fought and we've made up. We've been hurt and we've forgiven and been forgiven. We did it all together.

One of the hardest things this past year has been seeing friends give up on their marriages. The details aren't ours to know but the emotions are ours. Marriages shorter than ours have been broken. That's really effects me in a strong way. I cry about the loss even though it's not me who has lost. There's something about losing something out of your control and we've had plenty of that this last year too but to see something lost out of someones choice is something else altogether. I remember one time inparticular that we were having a really hard time and how easy it would have been in that particular moment to call it quits. But it would only have been easy for a moment. I made a deal with him to be his for eternity and I wholeheartedly plan on doing that. A deal's a deal. If either of us are unhappy that's something we can change - the unhappiness, not the deal.

I'm glad I got to know Stuart personally for a year and a half before getting married. Sometimes I have found myself looking at him and thinking "Who the heck is this man!?" but I do know even in the times when he's freaking out about losing something or upset because I can't choose what to make for dinner or whatever. I know who he is. He's the sweet, generous, thoughtful, funny, hardworking, loving, strong boy I married. He would do anything for me.

Things I've learned and observed this past half decade:

If you're married you need to depend on your husband. Don't share personal things with your mother. It's inappropriate. If a question is asked you don't need to answer it. (I've never had this problem with my mother.) You're peers now.

and on the other hand,

Just because you have a 'new' family now doesn't mean it's the only family you have. There's nothing wrong with accepting support from your family or your spouses. You were part of a family before and you'll always be a part of that family.

'Do unto others' really does go a long way. Treat your spouse how you expect to be treated in return. For me, learning to stand up for myself has been a big lesson. I don't expect to be spoken to a certain way so I don't speak to Stuart in that manner but if I was to talk to him like that I would expect him to stand up for himself. When Stuart speaks to me when he's angry I'll be sure to let him know he needs to calm down before talking to me. I never want to have someone take their frustrations out on me so I keep mine to myself and deal with it appropriately. We should all be able to control ourselves. We're adults.

We come from different families so obviously we're going to deal with things differently. The beautiful thing about being married is that now we can choose together how to deal with situations. We don't have to do it the way we were conditioned to. I love silliness. We do a lot of silly things together that make us happy. If that's what you want to do, do it.

Even if things aren't how you pictured them being doesn't mean you're a failure. I thought by now we'd have kids. We both thought that. Sometimes things don't go to plan. Live for the now. Don't focus on what could have been. Make things happen. Change your plan a little. Make the most of now. Although we thought we'd have children by now Stuart and I are having a great time focussing on one another. It's a blessing for us. I keep thinking of how we don't know what's in the future and how much more strain would be on us if we had a child to drag along with us. We're where we're meant to be right now and that's what matters. 

If you don't have children but are desperate for one try focussing on learning to be the best parent whilst you have time. That was a piece of advise my mum gave to me a few years ago. By focusing on learning now instead of being desperate I've grown a lot. Stuart and I have learned together. Our marriage isn't perfect but it's closer to perfect than it was a year ago because we're on the journey together instead of one of us wanting a baby so badly. We both want to continue getting to know one another and continue having adventures.

Homesickness. Screw it. Home for me is wherever Stuart is. I don't need homesickness or sadness. Eliminate those things. If you don't need it, don't accept it. I want to be happy. After a bout of depression that was harder to shake than any other downer I've been on last year I'm determined not to have to deal with it again. I'm going to stay as happy as humanly possible. If something does happen and I can't shake it it's time to get serious about health insurance. I won't sit about and cry anymore. 

I treasure the time I get to spend with Stuart. We'll talk, go on a walk, spend time with friends, cook together, nap together. Whatever. Those times with Stuart are my favorite. Don't force the moment. Sometimes just sitting together is perfect. Take things as they come, treasure it. Life is short. It would be dreadful if something happened to either of us and the other was left with thoughts like, "I wish I'd spent more time together instead of sitting at the computer." or "I hope he knows I love him even though I never took the time to talk to him and all I did was whine about his dirty socks never making it to the laundry bin." or "I hope he doesn't remember how annoyed with him I was when he bought me that toaster oven for Christmas as my 'big surprise'." 

Life on this earth is short. I don't want to take any regrets with me into the eternities. There is one that I'll be taking and that feels bad enough.


Ryan and Cecily said...

Laura, I love this post. I have many of the same feelings on marriage that you have written and I loved reading every word. I connected with what you have written and I appreciate the way you were able to say all those things. I'm sorry to hear about your struggles with children also. It is an emotional roller coaster and I think that is putting it mildly. Happy 5th Anniversary!

Tracy Ngu said...

Fabulous post Laura! Happy Anniversary to you and Stuart!

Megan Marie said...

I love when you said that you can change the unhappiness, not the deal. It's so true! Laura! You are great. So is stewart. It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside thinking that you will always be our married friends. And we can go on couple vacations together! YAYA!

Vikki Miller said...

This is such a fantastic inspirational post.

Seriously. Although I'm not married I truly believe we think a like. If I make the decision to marry someone then there's no backing out of it, I just don't see that as an option.

I always get so upset when I hear of people getting divorces or separated. It's like a real tragedy, it's like the death of a life that had been imagined together shattered and destroyed. I actually find it devastating.

When/if I do get married I seriously want my marriage to be as strong as yours. From your posts you two always sound so happy, and so in love, and just so dedicated and committed to making it work that there's not even a conscious struggle – if you know what I mean.

I hope you both have an awesome day. 5 is a brilliant number and a fantastic foundation for the rest of eternity :)


Jon and Sarah Jackson Family said...

You go girl. I think we all need a little reminder sometimes. I think that you guys go so well together and I know that it is because you make it work. No successful marriage happens without lots of hard work. I'm glad you learned that lesson so soon. I am sure it will save you a lot of problems later on. I love you, lovie.

Megan Marie said...

Megan said...

Happy Anniversary, you guys!

CTR2002 said...


You're awesome. :)

Happy anniversary! :)

Beth Adams said...

I am so grateful you are part of our family. You spoke the truth so beautifully. Watching the two of you and reading your blog has helped us to find the fun again.

I am so very glad the two of you found each other. Happy Anniversary, with many more to come.

Rachel said...

Thanks for that. I really enjoyed it :)