When my husband and I were enjoying our courtship period, one thing that we always loved discussing was how our married life would be. And like every other excited lovestruck couple, even we had a very flowery image of marriage in our mind. We thought it would be all about living in the same house, going on date nights, craving to get home to each other and of course, lots of sex. But now that I have been married for well over a year, I realise that a marriage is so much more than just all these things. Here are seven lessons I learnt in the first year of my marriage. I'm sharing these with you so that you can have a beautiful relationship with your husband that is based on the real picture and not just fairytale fantasies. Here goes.
1. Men and women are entirely different from each other - especially when it comes to communication...
Not stereotyping or anything, but women are usually vocal about their feelings while men, not so much. I know this is not how it should be, but well, it is. We also have very different ways of conveying what we feel or want to say. We know that most of our arguments could have been avoided had we actually understood what we were both trying to convey. Anyway, it takes time but you start understanding each other more, day by day.
2. The weirder you are with each other, the better!
Yes, I am a very crazy person. I talk like kids or like monsters when I'm in a funny mood, while my husband likes to play air drums after everything he says. We realise that had we been normal - talking normally, eating normally and never being gross with each other, our marriage would have been a very boring one.
3. Accept that nothing is always hunky-dory, you will have disagreements!
Oh boy, and not just disagreements, you will have full-fledged fights. They might start from a small topic but will just blow up at times. And we have accepted that. But we have also decided that no matter how hard it is to sort out a fight and come to an agreement, we never stretch a fight. We talk, discuss, dissect it, but we end it on the same day itself.
4. Secrets? Ummm, say what?
Yeah, I know all the hullabaloo about some things always being a secret, but the truth is that when you're married, it's pretty hard to keep a secret from your partner. My husband knows all about my exes and I know all about his, and this is just one thing. We know everything about each other, and we love it this way. We feel this has only strengthened our bond.
5. Having kids is important, but that can wait for a couple of years...
Yes, neither I nor my husband degrades the importance of having kids. They are an integral part of a couple's life and well, we do want to have a kid(s). But we are still in a phase where we're getting to know each other. So, we feel that now is not the right time to start a family. It's always a good idea to give a couple of years to yourself before you actually think of becoming parents.
6. You will never follow a routine!
There will always be disruptions. Assuming that marriage will bring with it a set pattern or lifestyle is foolish. We always thought that once we exchanged our vows, we would settle into a comfortable routine of getting back from work, having dinner together, watching movies in bed and head to sleep. But hey, that didn't happen! There are always things that come up - sudden meetings at work, an old friend visiting, getting stuck in traffic etc. But we make sure that once a week, we just devote the day to each other and spend quality time together. That pretty much makes up for everything.
7. It's important to achieve a balance between being an indepentent person and being interdependant with your partner...
And the last but most crucial lesson that both of us learned was this. A marriage doesn't mean that you forgo of your individuality and morph into one personality. A couple is only compatible when they both bring different things to the table - different qualities, opinions and understanding of things. So, as important as it is to be understanding and accommodating to each other, it's also very vital to keep your individuality intact.
I hope the lessons I learnt will help you gain some real perspective on this beautiful thing called marriage!