Newlywed Advice – What I’ve Learned From Two Years of Marriage
I can still remember the entirety of our wedding week. The Breakfast at Tiffany’s inspired bachelorette party, the Film on the Rocks screening of 10 Things I Hate About You, my wedding show, our rehearsal, and the most magical party I’ve ever been to, to celebrate our love. I think about this week often but especially on the anniversary. It’s hard to believe that two years have already gone by and so much has changed in our lives, our love for each other isn’t one of those things.
It’s work to be in a healthy happy marriage and we’re only just beginning. But this is what I’ve learned in our 5 years of being together and our two years of marriage, consider it your newlywed advice on marriage.
Communication is King
You’ve heard it a million times. The best relationships are built on communication. Neither one of us leaves things to guessing games. We’re clear on what we want and what we need. If I have a dream of what my birthday is going to look like I tell him so he can execute. If he is feeling overwhelmed with having to do all the cooking he tells me so I can adjust to support him in this. The conversations aren’t always easy, often it means setting aside your ego and hearing what your partner needs. But this is key if you want to keep this relationship going strong. All relationships are give and take so make sure you aren’t just taking but giving too.
During our pre-marital counseling 12-Hours To A Great Marriage was the book we were given to read. This is a great tool to have to learn new ways to communicate in healthy ways. I highly recommend it for any relationship no matter what stage you’re in.
Say I Love you
We’ve know that Clayton’s love languages are quality time and touch. My love languages are quality time and affirmation. So saying “I love you” is huge in our relationship. We say it often, multiple times a day. To me, saying I love you is not only letting the person know that you are in this with them or that you’re thinking of them, it’s a reminder to yourself of your commitment to love. It’s not always easy, but it’s 100% worth the risk and work it takes to create it.
Whether it’s for a weekend or a week a vacation for just the two of you is so important. It gives you that honeymoon phase of the relationships again. Even better, it gives you new life experiences that only the two of you have. This is where real growth happens and it’s better to be growing together. Clayton and I will travel during the year to visit family all over the country but we always find at least a small weekend to head to the mountains and stay over night just the two of us. We’re even working on a system that would allow us to go somewhere more extravagant every couple years. We’re looking at Europe, South America or Africa to be our next stop.
Date Night Every Week
No phones, no friends, just the two of you. That’s what date night is all about. Every week like clockwork you should be making time for the two of you. This is time to talk, to have experiences together, or even just to be present to life together. Our days are filled with to-do lists, playing on our phones, and running around. Date night is about slowing down and being together. It doesn’t have to cost money. It can be as simple as dinner together on the deck, a night to watch your favorite childhood movie or any one of the date nights I share on this blog.
While your wedding day might be one of the most memorable days of your life, your marriage is what lasts forever. The mountain top feelings come and go and the two of you change together until death do you part. Marriage, like any relationship, takes hard work and dedication. But at the end of the day when it’s all for someone you love and for something bigger, the growing pains seem to disappear. Take the time to invest in your marriage with counseling, books, and time together so that you have the tools to make it til the end.
Girl, your marriage is something beautiful, Inside & Out. Treat it with care.