Saturday, August 6, 2016
five years, four jobs (each), three homes, two continents (& countries & languages...), and one beautiful baby later...
today is our five year wedding anniversary. this month also marks 8 years since we met. amazing how time can seem to move so quickly, yet on the other hand it feels like whole lifetimes have passed since that sunny day in the countryside when we said our vows.
of course, an anniversary is just one day but it has me feeling nostalgic and reflective and I thought it might be fun to share a few things we've learned so far about ourselves and each other and marriage in general. and since it is our five year anniversary, here are 5 humble insights into what makes our marriage work.
1. love can grow and change
Like most people on their wedding day, I'd assume, I couldn't imagine loving Waldi any more than I did while standing before him in that white dress. I loved him with everything I had then. But the truth is, I have more now- more history and experiences, more love, more sacrifice. Just more to give. Neither of us are the same person we were when we got married. But that's okay because our love has grown and changed as we have.
2. separate but together
In our wedding ceremony we had a line from Kahlil Gibran's The Prophet that talked about this idea- two people, very much together but also their own separate individuals. We've always been very close- we were best friends for almost a full year before dating, and moving to Germany drew us even closer as we relied on each other throughout the process of rebuilding a community. However. It's important to us that we both have the time and space to enjoy our own interests, to go off alone so that we can come back again.
3. apologies come in many forms
I'm sure everyone's been told before that you shouldn't go to bed angry. And this is sometimes true. There have been times in our relationship where we've needed to hash things out in the moment. There have been issues and discussions that have required our immediate attention. But there have also been other times- petty grievances, groundless frustrations, or just plain grumpy days, where the best thing has really been to get a goodnight sleep and make up over coffee in the morning. The apology may look different but the important thing is that it always gets said.
4. there is always room to be surprised
I like to think I know Waldi pretty well. And the truth is, I do- and he knows me better than anyone else. But one thing that gets clearer to me with each passing year is that it's impossible to know everything about another person- to get to the very bottom of who they are. Because as well as you know someone, there is still always room to be surprised. Whether it's as simple as Waldi enjoying a book or movie I'd assumed he wouldn't be interested in, or as intense as going through a brand new experience together and seeing how he reacts (like childbirth, or moving around the world...), there's still so much about Waldi that I do not know and cannot predict.
5. we are still learning
I love to learn new things- be it languages, childbirth techniques, or a new knitting stitch. Realizing that I am still learning how to be a good partner to Waldi keeps me humble and energized to do my best everyday to show up for him and be fully present in our relationship. This is, for me, one of the most important things to remember about marriage- we are both still learning. We are both still going to need a lot of grace.
also, the fun thing about having a blog is that you can go back and read about old anniversaries: 4 years, 3 years, 2 years and (from Instagram) 1 year.