On November 7th, 2017 we celebrated our second wedding anniversary. Two years may not seem like a lot to those of you who are more tenured in your marriage journey but I bet you will agree in one thing: The second year of marriage is far different from the first.
Let me elaborate.
Year One. Ahhh, I can still smell the romance in the air and feel the honeymoon spirit. Year one was care free love, lots of great conversations, no quarrels, just live by the seat of your pants, no planning anything fun.
I remember one time we had been ordering so much pizza, we had a pile of empty pizza boxes that came up to my waist. No joke. Dominos made a lot of money off us in year 1 and our waistlines grew. I put on some “happy weight”, 10 lbs to be exact and didn’t realize it until seeing myself in a photo one day.
We didn’t talk about our money, we just did what we wanted and spent what we wanted. If a steak dinner sounded good, we got one. If i wanted some new shirts, i bought them. If he wanted some expensive coffee, he got it. You better believe i never went #2 in front of my husband and i was so embarrassed when aunt flow would come. What if he saw a tampon in the trash? Oh and he could never see me pick all the blackheads off my face. You don’t realize how many gross habits you have until you get married am I right?
Year One was fantastic, don’t get me wrong. I’d say the overall theme was “ignorant bliss”.
Fast forward to year 2 and i could not be happier. Really. Year 2 has been organized, intentional and has been a season of growth, both for us individually as well as together in our marriage. Honeymoon phase? That baby left pretty quickly. I can’t count how many times I’ve been sitting on the toilet (for a few minutes) when realizing i was out of toilet paper (with the bathroom door wide open) and calling for Chris to bring me some.
Not to mention the conversations about weekly groceries or our budget while I’m digging out a black head on my nose. On my period? Oh he knows all about it. Probably too much.
Emotionally, we have had our first real disagreements, our first feelings hurt by the other, shared some heartfelt feelings, sad tears, tears of joy, all of the emotions.
I would definitely say that the “Honeymoon Phase” is over but I’m not complaining. In fact, it makes my heart very full knowing that we have gotten to know each other so much better. Our arguments have brought us closer and our conversations have inspired future plans and current actions.
We talk about our money like crazy. Like, all the time. We are on a mission to be debt free by 2020 and in 2017 we have paid off 7 debts in our debt snowball and are currently free of ALL credit card debt. Let me say that those little balances across many stores quickly add up. Our impulse buys from 2016 ended up costing us an upwards of 10k! (I told you we did what we wanted without intention).
We went from spending freely without thought to now stewarding our money that we work so hard for and its been one of the BEST things for our marriage without a doubt.
If you and your spouse don’t have a money plan i would HIGHLY suggest Dave Ramsey.
We sit down weekly and talk about the expenses we have/ can foresee and plan out the month. If we have weddings to go to, we budget in the wedding gifts. If we have a family birthday, we budget their gift. Church event? Budget it. Am i out of mascara? Budget it. We try (and are not perfect) to budget everything we can think of so we don’t end up in a bind. We don’t have it all the way down yet but we have improved dramatically since year 1. And growth is what it’s all about right?
I want to share my favorite piece of advice i have ever gotten for marriage. I think this holds true if you are married for 6 months or 15 years. It is simple, but not easy.
True intimacy is something special. True intimacy with your spouse is leaving no stone unturned in your heart. Any insecurity, any grudge, any doubt, any bad dream, any future hopes, anything in your heart, your spouse should know.
Can i just comment on how HARD that is? I feel like i had never been more insecure than when i said “i do”. But this is something that i keep very close to my heart and i can tell you this has been why year 2 has been so much different from year 1. I tell Chris everything. Even when i don’t want to, even when its awkward or uncomfortable. I tell him. Because you see, we have an enemy that wants to steal, kill and destroy our marriage and i refuse to allow any footholds for him to use.
I am not perfect at doing this, please don’t think I am. But i am devoted to this and committed so you better believe i do everything in my power to live by this.
I am now more than ever looking forward to year 3. I am more in love than i was, i am more confident as a woman and i am hopeful. I know hard times will be here and i know there will be things that will continue to pop up but i know that i have a partner to do these things with and i could not be more pumped.