This Sunday I will be celebrating seven wonderful years with my sweet husband, Kyle. When they say time flies when you are having fun they weren't lying. (You can view our wedding here) A main reason that I love my career in the wedding industry is because I truly believe in marriage and respect how amazing it can be. When I hug my couples and send them off at the end of their wedding I am genuinely excited for the future they get to share with each other. Marriage takes work though. You don't say "I do" and continue on with business as usual. I don't claim to be a marriage or relationship expert but as I reflect on these past seven years I am happy to share some things that I think keep our marriage happy.
- Enjoy every moment I can thank the police department for this one. As challenging as it is to be a police wife I truly believe it has helped our marriage. For the first five years of our marriage Kyle worked five days on (night shift) and five days off. We didn't really see him for the five days that he was working. On those five days he wasn't working we were intentional about our time with each other. Even if you do have the same schedule and you do have the privilege of seeing your spouse regularly take the time to be intentional with the time you spend together.
- Don't leave each other angry I can also thank my husband's career for this one. Unfortunately, I don't really know for sure that Kyle will return home for work. Not to be morbid but the same goes for anyone, it's just something we are more aware of. I try to make a very conscious effort to resolve any conflicts that we have before he leaves. Much like the popular advice of not going to bed angry, don't harbor bad feelings, it's just not worth it. See also #3.
- Communicate effectively I could go on and on about this one. I am reluctantly part of several mom groups on Facebook and these moms constantly complain about how their husbands won't read their mind and do exactly what they want. Wouldn't that be great? Yes, but it's not real life. You don't have to yell, or be sassy just say what it is you need to say. Also, don't bring up past grievances, just make it simple. Honestly, I like to know when I am doing something that hurts someone I love and I want to fix it. I think it is also important to not hold things in. Have an honest but loving dialogue with each other. Don't fight just to fight and don't fight just to win. See also #4
- Check in This one is huge, guys! Life gets busy, we get into our routines and activities and next thing we know we have been married for seven years. Make it a point to check in with each other. Is what you are doing working? How can you be a better team mate to each other? If what you are doing isn't working, come up with a better game plan. See also #4
- Date Continuing to date each other is important. It helps you take the time to check in with each other and gives you the opportunity to have intentional time together. You don't have to go to a five star restaurant, the majority of our date nights include making cocktails at home and watching a movie after the kids go to bed. The point is, take the time to reconnect without distractions.
- Compromise My husband is the compromise champ, bless his heart. Go to his favorite restaurant even though you don't care for it, go to the movie he wants to see even though you'll have nightmares for years (sorry Kyle I just can't) and be happy about it.
- Support each other Have each other's back, cheer them on in their little and big wins, celebrate the successes, like and comment on their social media posts and share their blog and Youtube videos, make dinner or throw in that load of laundry when they've had a long day. You guys are on the same team in life, how can you make life better and easier for them?
I am one lucky gal to have a husband that gets these things. I fall short in a lot of these areas, but I know that when I make a conscious effort to do these things we are happier and I wish that for you in your marriage too.