& Then Comes Marriage

Last week, my husband and I celebrated 8 years of being married. The past 8 years have been full of growth, change, trials, and lots of yelling. Marriage is hands down the hardest thing I have ever committed to. Every day I wake up and choose my husband and choose to love him. I choose to believe the best in him and give him the benefit of the doubt. I choose to believe that he loves me and has good intentions. I have no doubt in my mind that my husband loves me. People have even commented to me how much my husband loves me, as if they don’t want me to forget. Truth be told, I used to. I used to have a very dark and twisted view of love. I didn’t believe it existed. I thought love was for weak people and I was not weak. On our first date, I told him that I don’t believe in marriage. I wasn’t going to get married. Oh, and kids? That was off the table. If he chose to still date me, he was going in with that knowledge. 

Now, obviously that all changed. But, it wasn’t like I woke up one morning and was suddenly gunning to get to an altar. I also didn’t wake up and suddenly want to have kids. My marriage and being a mother are results of a lot of growth in me. Every day when I wake up and choose my husband, he wakes up and chooses me.

Being married is awesome. It is the hardest thing I’ve ever done but it is also the most awesome thing. In high school, I used to give my friends weird looks when they would tell me that their boyfriend was their best friend. Uhm, excuse me? I’m right here. I would think when my childhood best friend would tell me that her boyfriend was her best friend and how she couldn’t wait to marry her best friend. Okay, that’s cool. I would think at those statements. Not that I was trying to marry my best friend. I wasn’t getting married, but I didn’t understand the boyfriend being the best friend deal. This guy had been a part of her life for months. Many months, sure, but I was running the yearlong game. At that time, we were at 14 years of being best friends. In a matter of months, some dude had just replaced me. At least, it sounded that way. To me, those things were separate. I had my best friends, the people I grew up with, my family. A boyfriend wasn’t coming anywhere near that level of love from me or that level of trust. They each had their own containers in my mind and there was no mixing.

I thought I knew everything. I thought I saw all the failed relationships and was doing the smart thing by not getting invested. I saw the horrific divorce my parents went through and decided that if I could avoid that, I would have everything I needed in life. Watching two people who claimed to love each other try and ruin each other really kills any hope you had in love. Instead, I would just enjoy happy endings in books and movies all the while knowing that they weren’t real. 

Then I met my husband and now I’m living in my happily ever after. It is one we both fought for though. He had to fight for me first though. Like I said, it wasn’t an easy transition to come around to the idea of getting married. I finally understand the best friend deal. My husband is my best friend. I still have my girl besties. But there is a different best friend level with husbands. He is my best friend and we are building a life together. My friends and I are living life together. I understand it guys! Growth.

Now though, I love being married. I love watching how we serve each other in our love and support each other. My husband helps with everything that is Writing Out Loud. He helps me edit; he listens to my podcasts beforehand. He encourages me. Whenever I’m feeling anxious, he holds me. He prays for me. I love planning out futures together. Potential business ideas we could implement if we ever got an enormous sum of money. I love hearing his dreams and working together to figure out how to make them a reality. I love how the things we both love brings us closer. I also enjoy the times when we’re in the same room, doing our own thing, but we’re still together and that is all we care about. 

For our anniversary last week, we had a movie night. We put Little Man to bed, made some popcorn and cuddled up on the couch. We watched A Simple Favor (this movie was all sorts of awesome) and talked about all the things we loved about it. I love our date nights and how simple they get to be because all we care about is being together. We have writing dates where we hang out at a coffee shop or a library and work on our writing pieces. We have dates where we just walk through stores and their furniture department and design rooms mentally. We have dates where we go and make booklists at the bookstore, telling each other what books sound good. 

I love when something awesome happens, when I accomplish something that I set out to do, he gets just as excited as I do if not more. He is walking along side me and cheering me on along the way. He puts me first and that is the most amazing feeling in the world. 

Now, I’m just a sap over here because 8 years is a long time. I know people who have been married multiple times in that time frame. I know people who have been married, divorced and married again in the past 8 years. Please don’t take that as judging, I’m just pointing out how we live in a culture where divorce is very common. I think it’s nice to see a story where the marriage wins. 

This is what I love about being married. Marriage is awesome guys. It is always worth fighting for. 

Retreats

Every year the women’s ministry at my church has a retreat. We leave Vegas to a beautiful town; the hotel is always cute. We decorate it and have amazing speakers and it is a wonderful weekend full of fellowship with amazing ladies, renewal and God moving. I have never been to a retreat where God didn’t move. Retreat is my favorite event of the year. I look forward to it, I enjoy it and I love growing closer with my sisters in Christ.

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Christmas Recap

We are into the first official week of January! I’m still struggling a little bit with Christmas being over. It is nice to take a step back and just focus on spending time with my family and doing whatever sounds fun. We were really intentional about what we did and I stinkin’ loved it.

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What is Writing Out Loud?

Growing up, there was one feeling I remember feeling the most out of all the others. Alone. I felt alone. I felt like I was a burden to others around me because I always had something going on. There was always something. I don’t know how I learned it—but I learned it was a negative thing. I was the only one I knew with a mentally disabled brother. I was the only one with a terminally ill mother. I was the only one in my neighborhood who was going through, well, everything. Everybody else around me was all smiles and happiness and easy. Oh my gosh, how I just wished for easy. 

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Things I'm Not Doing in 2020

I’ve already talked about goals and my goal setting process. During my goal setting session, there were some things I’ve added to my technical goal sheet, although I don’t count them as actual goals. Things on this little list are like smooth transition for Kindergarten for Little Man, read 50 books this year, using my planner all year. Things that I have control over but not much. These things are what I call things I would like to do. I don’t count them as goals because if something happens and it doesn’t work out, I don’t want that disappointment or feeling like I failed. If I don’t use my paper planner all year, I don’t want to feel like a failure with my goals. Not using my planner isn’t as big as not writing my book. If I didn’t finish my book, I’d be grumpy about it and it would be my fault for not making the time for it. If I don’t use my paper planner all year like I want to, it is probably because I need to rethink a planning system for myself. That isn’t a failure, that is a lesson. I think the paper planner is going to work for me though, I’m a big fan of putting pen to paper. Plus, you remember things better when you write them down.

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