August is such a special month for me because it is my wedding anniversary. Each year with my husband has just been more and more magical. I become a better wife, a better mother, a better person.
I came across a bunch of old photographs of me in high school and then in college and maybe even a few years after college. I could not stop shaking my head at the person in those photographs. The thin eyebrowed, skinny, people pleaser, longing for acceptance from others, no confidence having self. I searched for love in all the wrong places. I begged for attention from men and even women sometimes. The person I was then would have never accepted the man I have now.
Those that know me, know that Ariel was not the dream guy I prayed for. He is not 6 feet tall, muscle build body frame, with nice lips, college degree having. But boy did God come through. Ariel may not be the man I pictured myself to end up with, but he sure is the man I need, the man I did not know I wanted when I was under hurt, under qualified and broken.
As each new year approaches in my marriage, I reminisce on the woman I am today and the woman I am becoming. Ariel and I are destined to win. There is no doubt in my soul about that. I love him more than I think I have ever loved any man before. God has such perfect timing too because the old, young and naïve me, would have not taken this opportunity.
I can say today that being married to Ariel has been a blessing for me. He truly is my hero. I plan to stick by this man until I take my very last breath. I have put together a small list of suggestions for you all to #staymarried forever and for always. I came up with this list by observing other couples, trial in error in my own marriage, and reading great books. At the end of his passage, I have also included a few book suggestion that I found to be helpful in my own marriage.
I hope this helps.
In a world full of social media, distractions and chaos, being there for one another is very important. Even if you may not understand each others hobbies and interests, show up. Do you honestly think Ariel jumps for joy whenever I ask him to do a photo session with me? Or to take pictures and/or videos of me? Um, No! He does not. But he does it anyway. He does not complain. He asks me what I need him to do and he does it. And that smallest, most kindest gesture is what means the absolute world to me.
So get in the habit of looking your spouse in the eye, become one with his or her heart, be attentive.
This concept was difficult for me at least in the beginning of our relationship. I really did not do well with change. I liked routines, consistency, knowing what was about to happen so that I can prepare in advance for it. When Ariel and I first met, everything happened so quickly. We dated, we got pregnant and married within the first 5 years. In a blink of an eye, I was a mother and wife and had absolutely no idea what I was doing. My friends were still partying every weekend while I was home cleaning up baby vomit. What the heck happened? The good thing about Ariel was that even if he was under distressed with everything going on, he did not show it. He was there through those difficult hormonal changes and he held my hands and talked me through as I made every attempt to hang onto my old life but finally realized that those days were long gone.
Put Your Spouse First
Another difficult task. As mothers and women, we tend to put our children before any and everyone, which is not a bad thing by all means. But the reality is that we must put our spouses first, before our children in order for this marriage thing to work. Marriage is not a joke. It is to be taken seriously and something you must work hard for everyday. I personally want my marriage to last a lifetime, so I do my part to make it successful and everlasting. I can only pray my husband feels the same way.
For Ariel and I, being that we are parents, it is important to us to create a safe environment for our little ones. In order to do that, we must take care of each other, work as a team, love one another and display respect towards each other. So just like anything else in life worth having, one must work hard for a successful marriage. Think about it, your children will be with you for what, maybe two decades? But your spouse will be there til the end.
This was a struggle for Ariel for a while. He was never the type to talk about his feelings. His defense mechanism was merely to sweep the issues under the rug and pray they would go away all on their own. But I have always told Ariel that we must be intentional about spending some time talking. It does not have to be about each others feelings or anything uncomfortable. We can simply talk about our days at work, or something the girls did that we just could not believe. In due time, Ariel opened up more and was more willing to express himself when things didn't feel right. I think the key is to express your negative feeling in a constructive manner.
Show Your Appreciation
A good old "thank you" goes such a long way. You would be surprised at the difference it will make to your spouse if you just showed them how much you appreciate them. Being grateful for one another should not be an option. Showing gratitude will leave no room for resentment and/or judgements. Just say “thank you”. Say it to them today!
Alright guys! I hope these few simple tips will help you build a relationship that will last a lifetime and you will #staymarried !
Let me know what you think or leave me any comments you wish in the section below! I love hearing from you!