Recently I was asked “Do you think if you could talk to yourself 20 years in the future, you might have something to say differently about your relationship than now?” and this was my reply.
I’d like to think in twenty years from now I’ll still be happily married. With that said, I know there are mistakes I will make in my life that looking back I will question my sanity and forethought. Hindsight is 20/20. I also think that in twenty years I’ll be happy that I did something because it made me happy, even if it didn’t work out because for a time it was bliss. (I also think that looking back I will say it’s much more difficult than I originally assumed.)
Every decision is an adventure in and of itself. What I know is every day, even when it sucks, I am happy to be able to roll over in the morning and know that no matter what happens I’ve got someone who is willing to fight for me and with me. We’ve been through a lot including a very rough and draining couple of years when my little brother was fighting cancer. I’m not sure I would have made it out alive without his constant love and support.
Marriage is hard. Its all about compromise. Its about loving all the character flaws and there are fights and sometimes feelings get hurt. Its a lot of work but I also think that when its the right person it’s amazing. I never wanted to get married. I am independent and outspoken. I was going to travel the world and live in my car and be a forever student. And then I found someone who thought the greatest thing about me was my dreams and my independence. And he encouraged me to do everything, to strive, to never give up. And then I dated him for 4 years and then I married him. And you know what, I’m still independent and I’m in grad school and we are traveling the world together, one country at a time. Sometimes being married doesn’t mean being tied down, it means being tied with, and that can be a really great thing.
I was always afraid I would lose myself in the role of wife. That I would cease to be me and start being an thing, a title. It hasn’t happened. I find that I am more willing to be myself, to try new things, see new places and be open with others because I know there is nothing in the world that would change how he feels about me. Getting married has been about growing wings instead of being the caged bird. You can’t let fear stop you from letting yourself be happy.
Marriage is an epic decision, not to be taken lightly. To have and to hold from this day forth is a big responsibility. Carrying someone’s heart in your pocket is the greatest of all responsibilities. I understand the trepidation and respect it completely. I was engaged for over 2 years when we were married.
**this is a couple of replies spliced together for completeness.