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In an age of social media giving us an inside look at people’s lives, it’s easy to get sucked into perfectly posed pictures and #marriagegoals fantasies.
I’ll be the first to admit that I was sucked into the hype too. As a blogger, I spend alot of my time online. I love perusing Instagram feeds for beautiful shots of curly hair, family, fashion, and everything in between.
But as a mom and wife, I understand that being happily married takes some work.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been told how lucky I am. Yes, I do have a wonderful husband who loves me and is a doting father to our children.
However, we are both human and at times we want our own way. The fight to compromise is often just that–a fight–a battle of wills.
In fact, sometimes finding common ground can be downright painful. I truly believe that love is an act, not a fleeting feeling. And honestly, sometimes the act of sacrafice just isn’t fun.
At times sacrificing makes you feel resentful. You ask yourself why you signed up for this.
But at the end of the day, the benefits outweigh the sacrifice.
When my husband and I got married, we were 26. We were both college graduates with careers. We had lived on our own and made our own money before getting married. Once we shared sharing a bank account, it was clear that we had to be on the same page to remain fiscally responsible.
Our wants could no longer be driven by selfish desires without consulting each other.
As a newlywed, I remember visiting the homes of other couples and feeling envious. I wondered how they could afford things like new cars, huge flat screen televisions, and stained steel everything in their kitchens. Seeing how they lived their life was #marriagegoals.
Little did I know, that some of those same people were envious of the trips my husband and I frequently took. I quickly learned that we often spend money on things of value to us, and what everyone values is different.
Sure, I wanted big flat screen t.v.s in every room, but my husband and I desired to see the world more. So that meant that we sacrificed during the year to island hop.
I’m not perfect, and neither is my husband. In the heat of the moment, we sometimes say things we regret.
I’m embarrased to say this, but one time I told my husband I hated him. I can’t even remember why, but what I do remember is the look on his face. Just thinking about the hurt I caused him was not worth the words that spilled out of my mouth. He may not remember that moment, but it’s an embarrasing one that is etched in my brain.
He hurt my feelings and in that moment I wanted to hurt him back. But as a married woman, what I failed to realize is that hurting him meant hurting myself too.
I’m not proud to admit it, but my brain is like an elephant, sometimes its hard to let go of stuff. I can tell you where I was and what was going on the moment my husband did something to make me mad or hurt my feelings.
I love his ability to shake things off and forget, but I’m not quite there yet.
I realize that holding on to things hurts us both. It does no good to drum up moments of pain and regret. In fact, it can turn a moment that was sweet into a sour one quickly.
If we are going to continue growing together in my marriage, I HAVE TO LET STUFF GO.
Especially the things that don’t matter.
Like the fact that he forgot to take out the trash. Or the moment he embarrassed me and told someone that I don’t know how to swim. Those moments don’t make our marriage.
I know. These things that I’m encouraging you to take a look at are tricky. You may feel completely content in your thoughts and actions. But we are constantly growing and changing. And if you aren’t changing, you are painstakingly staying the same despite your circumstances. Why not take a hard look at ways you can grow and change as a couple?
One of the ways my husband and I stay in tune with each other is to be aware of each other’s love language. As we age, our needs change. Some of the things that were important to me at 27, rank lower on my list of importance at 34. We keep the communication lines open and are committed to meeting each other’s changing needs.
And that is how you achieve #marriagegoals status.