I was looking at him with the kids yesterday and thought to myself, "Man. I didn't even know these three people eight years ago. Who knew they'd mean so much to me?"
Here are some fun gifs to represent a few lessons we've gleaned over the last seven years. I fully expect that the next seven will shift, confirm, or obliterate these altogether.
Don't worry about the toothpaste.
"Do you squeeze your toothpaste from the bottom or the middle?" This question sparked a conversation during our pre-marital counseling. How do you handle those tiny (and completely infuriating) little annoyances?
Billy's response: Buy two tubes of toothpaste.
To some extent, we've tried to keep that general attitude towards stuff that's not all that important. (Except oh my goodness, why do you have to get out a new cup every time you want a sip of water?????)
Apologize often. Forgive quickly.
I'm still working on this one. But sometimes I float into the sky and watch myself. (Normal... yes?)
I see when I'm picking fights or being ornery. Then I ask myself, "Seriously. What purpose does this serve?"
Usually it's best to slam on the brakes and apologize. The quicker the better. And let's love each other with swift and full forgiveness.
Don't worry about date nights.
I know. I know. Everyone's always telling married people to schedule a weekly date night. Boo.
Maybe I'm weird, but I find that advice stressful. It's just... logistics. I don't have the energy.
Dates are good. We love to plan activities and go out. And it's important that we hang out together regularly.
I just can't do it weekly. Besides, we also love to watch Everybody Loves Raymond together while we fall asleep.
Experiment. Rinse. Repeat.
Remember those logistics? Once we had kids, the details of life somehow multiplied exponentially.
We had to start calling family meetings. Seriously.
As responsibilities starting landing willy nilly or slipping through the cracks, we needed to huddle up. We coordinate childcare, spilt to-do lists, go through the mail, yada yada.
And if something's not working... if one person is overwhelmed with housework or child shuffling or anything else, we try to readjust. Family meetings have helped us avoid a lot of arguments.
Get up early.
Okay, you do not need to get up early. But that has worked well for us.
We like to have a few moments of peace before the calvary is up and shouting. We drink coffee. We connect. We dream. Or we're just silent together in the same room.
Learn the team cheers.
If I had a dollar for every time Billy has said to me, "I support you 100%," I could own a gazillion goldfish. It's always so encouraging and empowering to know you've got someone in your corner.
Find a giant Rice Krispy treat.
On a road trip with friends, we stopped at a gas station. Billy and I discovered this gigantic Rice Krispy treat.
I don't recall the specifics, but we started telling jokes and giggling in the corner. A friend just looked at us and said, "I'm glad you guys crack each other up."
I like private jokes and shared adventures in marriage. While we love socializing with others, it's also fun to remember we have a relationship that's just us.
What has worked well in your marriage or those you admire?