Here’s an all-time cliche for you: My husband is the one. And I mean that in the most disgustingly romantic way possible. But, I also mean that in the nitty-gritty, life-happens-and-we-deal-with-it, he-leaves-his-socks-everywhere way. Because, if we’re being honest, marriage isn’t easy. It’s not a merry-go-round ride where you’re all smiles all the time, clinging for dear life out of sheer enjoyment. Here’s a little secret: marriage is hard. And I don’t just mean hard in the sense that bending down to pick up his socks every other minute hurts my back. I mean it’s tough, and it’s tears, and it’s heartache, and it’s (very rarely but sometimes) slamming doors (mostly car doors, because he hates my driving).
With that being said, marriage is also beautiful. But it’s a different kind of beautiful than the initial honeymoon phase that comes with every relationship. Marriage is a kind of beauty that slowly seeps through your being like the sun rise on an early morning. Marriage, whether you’re happily married or not, isn’t just a commitment. It’s part of every bone of your body. From the moment you wake up in the morning and all through the night, you’re married. You can’t just close the door on your significant other’s face and never call them back again. You have to wade through the waters of marriage together, or you’ll drown.
I say all this not to scare you away from the idea of marriage, but to make it utterly clear how incredibly grateful I am that the person I’m married to is the one that, if I’m going to drown, at least we will be holding hands on the way down. Here are just a few of the many reasons how I knew – and know – that my husband is the one.
We compromise. As an independent woman who don’t need no man, compromising wasn’t something that was always on my to-do list. But with Kris, it’s almost second nature. It’s like we were two pieces of a puzzle (another cliche!) that got put together and just clicked into a healthy way of functioning. The healthy part here is huge, because before Kris, my idea of healthy was getting drunk and screaming at my current boyfriend so I didn’t have to deal with it sober. Or lying to get out of a date. Or changing the locks instead of breaking up.
Since day one, Kris and I have worked as a unit to accomplish the things that are important to both of us. Even the little things, like cleaning the house. I’ll fold the laundry if he puts in the clothes and switches them out. I’ll dust if he vacuums. I’ll cook dinner if he does the dishes. I’ll make the bed if he gives me a pedicure (just kidding). Compromise – even on a small scale – is the thread that really ties our marriage together and keeps us both happy and equal.
He makes it easy to communicate. As an introvert prone to passive-aggressively getting my feelings across, healthy communication wasn’t really in my vocabulary prior to meeting Kris. Not answering a text message was my way of telling someone I was upset with them. But that doesn’t work in marriage, and I learned that pretty quickly. Kris doesn’t put up with that crap, and would rather have me screaming in his face that he put my bra in the dryer rather than deal with my silent treatment for a day. When something is wrong, he tells me. And this has opened the door for me to do the same.
He notices the little things. This may seem, well, little, but in marriage, it makes a world of difference. There isn’t a day that goes by that he doesn’t compliment me on something – the way I smell, how cute I look in my work outfit, how nice my hair is done that day, how delicious dinner was. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t feel noticed.
He shows me he loves me. Anyone can say they love you. Trust me, I’ve heard it enough times to last me 30 lifetimes over. But at the end of the day, “I love you” is just three little words that can be pretty shallow when not backed up. Kris goes out of his way to show me he loves me, every single day. Whether it’s cleaning up the house before he leaves in the morning or texting me how beautiful I look that day and that he’s thinking about me or simply picking up dinner on the way home without being asked, these little actions go a long way to back up those three words.
He never tries to change me. This is probably one of the most important aspects of a healthy relationship, and in my experience, is something that’s not so easy to come by. Whether it’s passive-aggressively implying that you wear your hair a different way or blatantly complaining about some quirk you have, I think a lot of marriages are filled with one person trying to change the other. Kris has accepted me for me – every little flaw and annoying habit included. Not once has he asked or implied that I change some part of me. He has fully taken me as I am – early bedtime, excessive reading, and annoying need to annoy him constantly included.
How did you know your other half was “the one”?