Kyle and I have been married for 6 months (and something days) and I truly never realized how quickly time passes by until now. I am living my best life, and time is flying.
I don’t want to pretend like I have everything about marriage, or men, or life all figured out. I’m so far from that. But I do like to think that these 6 months have made me a little wiser when it comes to all of those things.
I can’t wait to see how Kyle and I discover more and more of one another as we’ve been married 1, 5, and 20 years. I believe that there is always something new to discover about someone, even the one you are married to.
So, here are the six things I have (slightly) figured out. Hopefully this list only grows by the year.
- Find Activities You Enjoy Doing Together, and Do Them Regularly
Kyle and I are literally polar opposites. I love writing and English, he loves science and math. He is quieter and thoughtful, I am super chatty and will talk all day long about anything. He is a risk taker, I am much more cautious. He loves any and all sports, while I barely know how football works. He is an only child and I am the oldest of six. The list goes on and on and on. However, despite how opposite we are we have found things we both enjoy doing together. For example, we can now quote “The Office”, which has turned into our favorite show. I loved the show and so we’ve started watching it together. I’ve started gaining interest in rock climbing, Kyle’s absolute favorite activity. I love to cook, and so he has gained interest in how I cook and tips for when he cooks on his own. Kyle is a teacher by nature, and recently showed me how to write code (he is a computer science major). Even though some of these things I would not have necessarily chosen for myself, his love for these things inspires me to see the good and joy he finds in them. I cannot wait to continue growing our list of activities we enjoy together, for people who are so opposite 🙂
2. Don’t Be Afraid to be the First To Say “I’m Sorry”
Arguments happen, and you say things you don’t really mean. It’s inevitable and bound to happen at one point or another. Or you forget to do something *really really important* that they asked you about. Often we are so quick to defend ourselves that we forget that all the other person wants to hear is that we are sorry. I’ve learned that I don’t need to constantly defend myself if I’m wrong, because Kyle is going to love me every time I mess up (that’s the cool part about marriage.) Hearing him out is what he really wants, and as long as I let him know that I hear him and that I will do better, he is happy. He doesn’t need me to defend myself, because he isn’t looking to put me down. A sincere apology is the key to almost everything.
3. Wake Up Together
Each morning, Kyle needs to get to work before I do, so naturally he is the first one up. However, I’ve learned that having an hour together before work is the best part of the day. Instead of just sleepily telling him bye, I love having that early morning hour to connect and talk about the day to come, and to be able to make him breakfast. There is so much joy in sacrificing an extra hour of sleep in exchange for really sweet quality time together, especially since our schedules are often so conflicting.
4. Date Nights
Date nights don’t just rock because you don’t have to wash dishes, but it gives me an awesome excuse to wear all the cute clothes that I don’t get to wear during the week (#serverlife). Most date nights lead us to some sort of Mexican restaurant (we can’t help ourselves) and going on a walk around the park or our neighborhood. Simple, but wonderful. Especially being on a budget, elaborate date nights aren’t realistic. However, we love driving down the road to Austin every month or so where we get Mexican (we are creatures of habit) and explore one of our favorite cities. Ever checked out Barton Springs? It’s a spring fed swimming hole in downtown Austin that is perfect for this ridiculous heat. Fingers crossed that we can go again soon!
5. Love Languages
Unless you’ve been avoiding the internet, you’ve probably heard about the ‘Five Love Languages’ by Gary Chapman. Basically, it assumes that most people fall into one or two categories that describe how they feel most loved. Kyle’s love language is words of affirmation, so I am constantly thinking of ways that I can verbally affirm him, because this is how he best feels love. I love to build him up with what I say, write him letters, and tell him how proud I am of his work. And on the flip side, I am very cautious of using too harsh or belittling of words, because I know that that is what tears him down the most. Telling him how much I appreciate him is how he knows I really love him. For me, I am a total physical touch girl. My parents and siblings are all the same, we love hugging, so I’m totally convinced this is why touch is my love language. Kyle knows this, so when he wants to make sure I’m feeling extra loved he’ll give me a back massage, or hold my hand during church, or give me a really long hug. Take the quiz online if you want to find yours out. It has made our relationship 10000 times better because we know how to pick one another up when we’re feeling down, and what makes us feel the best. (Take the quiz at http://www.5lovelanguages.com/profile/)
6. Make Goals Together
Before Kyle and I got married, we sat down one day and wrote a list of our marriage goals. We have that list taped on our fridge so we are always reminded of what we want our marriage to look like. Recently, we have been working on making a list of 5 year goals, financial goals (no more student debt!!!) and future family goals. While we cannot always predict what will happen, it’s so special to come together and decide on what we as a couple will strive for.
I encourage you to sit down with yourself or if you’re married, with your spouse, to decide what you want to strive for in life. Life will throw us curveballs, but we want to be on the same page. We are a team for life and setting goals together is part of an awesome marriage.
Let me know if you have any awesome marriage tips. I would love to hear from y’all as I’m still in the newlywed stages of our marriage 🙂