When you stand at the alter with your soon to be husband or wife, and you share your vows together- till death do us part. There are a lot of things that come with that- heck the rest of your life does.
Coming out of our first year of marriage and now almost to our 2 year mark there are a lot of things that we learned. So here are 7 things that we have expereinced in our first year of marriage!
1) Date Nights
Just because you get married and are suddenly together all the time, does not mean that you STOP dating. Date nights are critical! When you fell in love with your spouse back when you were dating, you were going on dates, you were going out, planning trips to amusement parks, going for nice dinners on the river. Think of the moments when you fell more and more in love with your spouse at the time you were just dating. Those are crusial moments, and just because you are married now, doesn't mean that those things have to stop. In fact they shouldn't! AT ALL. It was in those moments when you fell in love over and over again, so why would you stop that? Keep dating, and going on dates- don't just stop because you don't feel the need to because you can just hangout at home together.
2) Encouragement is needed
First of all you need to understand what "encouragement" is and what it looks like. Encouragement is the action of giving someone support, confidence and hope.
It is an ACTION, which means you have to actually do something to encourage someone. Encouragement in a marraige is something we have found to be vital. There is nothing like having your best friend, someone whom you trust with all your heart come up to you and fill you with encouragement. Wives- encourage your Husbands. I think because the media says that men have to be strong and fearless that we sometimes forget to encourage the men in our life. We need to encourage our men more. Tell them how proud you are, tell them how important they are to you. Encouragement is vital for a marraige, a little encouragement can heal a wife, a husband and a marraige!
You will quickly learn a whole new meaning to sharing when you get married. The war is on, who is going to get the covers tonight? And who is going to be squished to the side of the bed?
We have a queen size bed, and sharing the covers and bed was not that big of a deal right at first. But then we went away for a holiday and we shared a KING size bed and it has been an on going battle ever since. When we shared a king size bed we had so much room that I didn't even know my husband was in bed with me until I woke up in the morning to see him peacfully on his side :)
But it was when we came home, we realized the king size bed destroyed us. Now It is 3 am in the mornings and I roll over only to notice that I am crammed to the side of our bed with a sheet that reaches only to my knees. I would try to pull the blankets, but eventually you get to a point where trying is a loss cause. My husband and I just laugh it off now. But my suggestion to you, is if you are not good with sharing a bed or blankets, and you tend to HOG them, I would definatly suggest spending the money on a king size bed. Or you can do what we did, and only share king size beds on vacations. Don't say I never warned you.
4) Forgive Freely
When you forgive, it means that it is done. It does not mean that you can 3 months later bring it up in hopes of getting something that you want. We learned to always forgive and to forgive FREELY. We have learned that if we get in a fight about something, and we know that we are wrong to always ask for forgiveness. And the other person would then choose to forgive and to forgive freely. I think sometimes when you ask for forgiveness for something, and the person forgives you we sometimes forget what forgiveness really looks like. It means that it is done! But we are humans and we mess up, it is part of life. I know my husband and I have forgiven each other multiple times, and there are times where after we forgive each other, the next time we get in a fight it gets brought up again in our defence. Which is not right. When you forgive someone it is done at that moment of forgiveness, and you really realize when you truly have forgiven someone because there is no anger, frustration from that point. In your first year of marriage you are going to have to learn to forgive and to forgive freely.
5)Money isn't what makes a marriage work!
The world tells us that money buys you happiness. That at the end of the day if you have money in your bank then all else is good. People who are making good money are happy 24/7 they don't go through trials in life, there marriage is phenominal, their relationships with their kids are amazing, and their life in general is awesome! But if you are a human, than you know that this is not true. Noone's life is perfect. And money sure as h***does not buy you happiness. Your going to learn this in your first year of marriage. Marriage takes work, and it doesn't matter how much money you have you are going to face trials and your going to make mistakes. Memories are worth more than money ever will be, and memories will give you more than what money ever will give you.
6) Decisions Together
I learned this lesson the hard way in our first year of marriage. You have to learn that to make a marriage work you need to make decisions together. In our first year of marriage there were a couple decision's that I made on my own, I asked my husband his oppinion but the reality was my mind was made up even before I heard his feedback on the matter. When you start making decisions on your own, and you don't include your spouse in them, it makes them feel disrespected, hurt and that you don't care about them or their oppinion. It tares a person down, and lowers their self esteem. Especially your husband, they are the man in your relationship and they are the leader, but if you start making decisions without them it makes them feel less of a person and that you really don't care about what they think. Like I said I learned this the hard way, and it caused for a lot of disagreements and fights in our marriage. But we worked it out! My biggest desire is to be the best wife that I can be and to be my husbands biggest encourager and biggest fan! My advice to you as you enter this incredible adventure of marriage is to always make decisions together, sit and talk about it! Don't do what I did, it will really hurt your marriage!