4 years of marriage, you say? Here is what I have learned.
Marriage. Because you might as well make being total weirdos together official.
I am a marriage expert
Yes, you read that correctly. I am an expert in marriage in case you were wondering. I have shared 4 years of pure bliss with the love of my life. We have done nothing but learned from one another and grown together and enjoyed each other’s company every day.
Okay, if you don’t know by now that my writing is drenched in sarcasm, I apologize. But oh my gosh, I am absolutely not the person you should come to for marriage advice. We fly by the seat of our pants, we are incredibly weird humans, like we turn on YouTube videos while I dance to them weird. Like he swaddles our dog, Boone, like an infant weird. Like we sing to karaoke on the couch together weird. We have no sound advice for you unless you would like to learn how to enhance each other’s strangest qualities. But maybe that is why we have made it this far. To me, marriage is not so much about appearances or perfection. It’s about being your absolute self around one another. It’s about pushing the other to be better, even if it means getting them out of their comfort zone.
In the 4 years that we have made it official, we have moved twice, he has made me learn to drive stick shift (yes…I love it now and will never go back to an automatic, ugh men), I have urged him to go on hikes when he would rather be fishing, he has convinced me to learn how to row a fishing raft, which again, I love now. I hate it when men are right. He has “encouraged” (not pushed me) to ski down mountains I thought I might die on, and I have somewhat persuaded him that not everything he is thinking needs to be said out loud. We have had fun-loving arguments, we have had big, not-so-loving, fights, and have basically laughed at each and with each other daily to get through this roller coaster called life.
Sometimes the answer is right under your nose
As many of you know, Alex and I are from the same small town, Hettinger, North Dakota. We never officially dated in high school…although he tried with all his might starting in the 5th grade. I had to politely decline, because I was 1 year older and obviously far too mature to date younger boys. Anyway, the story goes we reconnected in college, we did the long distance thing for awhile, he moved to North Carolina while I was volunteering in South America, and we just couldn’t manage to be apart from each other’s weirdness any longer. And BAM! Just like that everything worked out, we had no qualms, we got married, and we have been roaming around in pure love and happiness ever since.
But in all seriousness, it is difficult to put into words how lucky I feel. That may sound cliche, but it’s the truth. I had to do some hard soul searching only to circle back to that 5th grade boy who was right under my nose the whole time. It is funny how life works, but I am grateful he stuck around and was willing to give this ole cougar a shot.
I was never really interested in marriage
Don’t get me wrong. I thoroughly enjoy love. I cry all the time in romantic movies. I sobbed like a baby in every episode of Parenthood, which I recently started rewatching. If you haven’t seen Parenthood, grab your tissue box and settle in for the best, most heartwarming Netflix binge of all time. I digress. What I am trying to get at is that I never quite understood the appeal or significance of marriage. When I was with Alex, I knew we would be together forever, but I didn’t really think that marriage was a necessary next step.
Enter one of the more sensitive boys (he’s going to kill me) I have ever met. Marriage was something he valued a lot, and as we began to discuss it more, I began to see where he was coming from. Committing to someone you love (and can be bizarro around daily) is pretty unique and special. I have heard many people say that your spouse or partner does not have to be your best friend; after all, that is what your friends are for. I disagree. I would be disappointed had I settled for anything less than a best friend in my partner. No, we do not always see eye to eye. We have had political, life and religious debates, but all of that has actually strengthened our relationship over time.
When it came down to it, I came to the conclusion that marriage was a sacred vow saved for the one person you know, absolutely know, will be your partner in crime, best friend, biggest supporter, and adventure-mate for life. Alex is that person for me.
Let’s wrap this up shall we…
A couple parting thoughts. It’s okay to be passionate and fired up with your partner from time to time, especially if you are fiery, passionate person like Alex and myself! This means you are learning more about them and growing together, not apart, because of it. I have seen lots of couples split up, because one person thinks the other person “has changed over time.” Well of course you have changed! How weird would it be if we all stayed the same forever? If our thoughts on life, politics, religion, career, etc. never evolved, that would be incredibly boring and uneventful.
Yes, sometimes I wish he were less vocal and stubborn, and I know he would say the same for me. However, instead of trying to change your partner, I think it is essential to support them through whatever changes they are experiencing. Get excited about their biggest dreams. Actively listen to what they are struggling with or enthusiastic about. Communication is key! The older I get, the more I value and appreciate communication.
Again, please don’t take my advice…
Essentially, I have no idea what I am talking about. I can give you all the advice in the world about fitness, stress reduction, healthy eating, and weight loss! So please remember, I am by no means a marriage expert. I am simply here to give you a good laugh, hopefully add a little joy to your day, and celebrate 4 years of my crazy adventure with as crazy of a partner.
And hey, if you have any dating, marriage, being single advice for me or others, please share below! Strong relationships with friends, family and partners are as important as exercise and healthy eating, which is why I like to mix up my blog posts and remind you that diet and fitness are not the end-all-be-all! Life is about so much more, and when we nourish all these areas, we experience real, pure joy and happiness! Thanks for listening. Here’s to 444 more years of weirdness, stubbornness and growth! Cheers! ♡
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