Next week, Sean and I will celebrate our 3rd wedding anniversary and while that is no significant number, today I want to share a few lessons I have learned since Sean and I said our vows.
1. Love him anyways - When he makes a mistake, love him anyways. When he doesn't pick up his socks or takes out the trash even when you asked him for the 6th time, you love him anyways. If you expect him to plan a date for you and he wants to just have a quiet night at home in front of a movie, you love him anyways. Even if he doesn't get things perfectly, which frankly husbands and wives for that matter, never will, you love them anyways.
2. Tell him what you want but ask in a polite way - hey news flash, guys are not mind readers! If you want him to clean up a little bit more around the house, or not leave his shoes around the living room, just tell him. Couples who are married 50 years or even more probably have a great understanding of what their spouse wants but they don't always get it correct, why, because they don't read our minds. You two are still individuals after all of those years of marriage but you will never share the same mind so you don't know exactly what your spouse is thinking or wanting from you exactly.
3. Laugh a lot! When the day has you down, laughter helps! When life is a little rough, laugh and it will help the roughness a bit. Even when marriages have rough spots, having laughter will help and make those rough spots seem a bit more manageable. Sean is responsible for most of the laughter in our marriage and I am thankful to him for that!
4. Realize that marriage will be hard just like every other areas of life whether it is work or raising children for example. But you don't give up on a hard project at work right, or your children are really testing your patience, you don't give it. The same goes with marriage, you don't give up. Choose to smile a bit more and laugh a bit more during those hard times in marriage.
5. Recognize you and your spouse are on the same team and are not enemies. When you want your spouse to see your point of view or come to realize your side of the argument, that is when you make them your enemy. You think their side of the argument or opinion is wrong and you have to convince them your opinion is right, but why? Marriage is all about teamwork and if you constantly view your spouse as the enemy because they don't share your view, then the team part of your marriage won't work.