Last week DR and I celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary! And what do you know, that husband of mine gave me the very best present! A stainless steel coffee pot, one that will never break! I must say, it's probably the very best present I've ever received. (I'm just a little addicted to my coffee!)
As we were congratulating one another on our 9 years together DR asked if I'd been happy in our marriage.
"Not always." I answered truthfully. "I've been happy for 7 of the 9."
He raised his eyebrows questioningly and I went on to explain. Our first year of marriage wasn't happy, but at the time I was too stupid and inexperienced to realize I was miserable. I was a newlywed, pregnant with twins who just happened to spend six months of that first year separated from my husband. Of course our marriage wasn't tip top! My husband was in Delaware while I was in Indiana pretty much on my own. We barely even knew one another before we were married and that first year didn't provide the opportunities to get to know one another the way newlyweds should.
A couple of years after our boys were born we lived in southern Indiana and although we were living very near DR's hometown we were miserable with one another. His job was extremely stressful with a lot of personnel conflict and long, long working hours. I was an isolated stay at home mother of twin toddlers far from any of my friends and family. DR and I barely saw one another and when we did we were usually grumpy.
Luckily we only lived in Southern Indiana for one year (the second unhappy year) before we moved to Illinois for another job position for DR. Illinois offered a pay cut and a demotion in the company. DR's job was less stress, but also less money. Money was pretty tight. We were at least three hours from any of our family. Our house was old and drafty and out in the middle of nowhere. Illinois battered us with snow, snow drifts, ice and wind. I was still a stay at home mom but I was able to venture out into the world a bit. Sounds stressful doesn't it? Yet, for the three years we lived there it was easily some of the happiest years of our married life.
Later DR mentioned to me that he never understood why I stayed with him after those hard years, especially the first. I didn't have an answer for him other than..."Because that's what you do when you are married."
I didn't marry DR with the belief that life was always going to be peachy. I realized that everyone has their good days and bad days, though I hadn't anticipated entire bad years. DR isn't the happiest person to be around, neither am I. But we love each other; happy or grumpy, good or bad. I believe that DR and I have to work together and help cover each other's weak spots to make our marriage work.
I feel extremely blessed to have met DR and married him when I did. I am thankful everyday that DR is the father of my children because he's very good at it. I'm ecstatic that DR loves me despite my oddities and weirdness. We've had 7 really great years of marriage. Yes, two of those years were lousy but honestly, I'm glad we endured them. The bad years have made us stronger and resilient. I think every couple needs some "bad years" because it makes those good years grand!
Can you relate?