Marriage Monday: Ryanne's Guest Post - 5 Lessons from 5 Years

My husband and I are very blessed to be celebrating the five year anniversary of our marriage this month. By comparison, five years isn't really all that long. But a lot happens in five years--every year brings new blessings and challenges that grow and change us.

Be conscious of how you treat one another.
You would think this is a given. I mean, you love each other right? Unfortunately, we're human so sometimes we fail. Sometimes we allow outside stresses to get to us, and we take it out on each other. For some reason, we consider our spouse (maybe just subconsciously) to be an easy target for us to unleash our frustrations and disappointments. But guess what--it's not necessarily their fault. Let's be honest--sometimes it really can be your spouse's fault. But is it really their fault all the time? Just make sure that you aren't treating each other badly because your boss was a jerk or something like that. And APOLOGIZE for it when it happens. On that note...

Pick your battles.
 Not everything needs to be a big deal. I don't think I need to say too much more on this one, but you would be surprised at how many couples I know who get into repeated, vicious arguments over every. little. thing. In my opinion, if you nag your spouse constantly or turn everything into a fight that just totally diminishes things when the big things do come up--because they DO come up. That doesn't mean you shouldn't bring up things that bother you--just don't turn it into a knock-down-drag-out when your hubby doesn't put the toilet paper on right.

Always remember that you're a team.
 No matter what life throws at you, you are a team. Fighting for something--be it to get pregnant, eliminate debt, save for a big vacation, to get healthy--can be incredibly uniting. But the road to what you want is not always smooth and easy. So when trouble comes, don't let it divide you. Especially when it is something that causes an extremely individual reaction to what is happening.

Appreciate your relationship.
Never take what you have for granted. It is so easy to do, but we have got to avoid it because everything we know could be gone in an instant. A few months ago, my husband was in a bad car accident. His injuries were not life threatening, and he was not paralyzed. He has gotten better, and can do everything he used to. But that whole experience rocked our world to the core and made us realize that we really aren't invincible. I'll never, ever forget that moment when he called me and I realized that something was wrong. At that moment, we didn't know that he was going to be okay. We are blessed that he was. Anyway, don't ever forget that it only takes a moment to change everything. So cherish what you have and don't just assume that it will all be there tomorrow.

You might not want to hear this, but marriage is work.
Just like you can't expect to stay healthy and fit without investing time and effort into yourself, you also can't expect your marriage to be great without any work. Sometimes work means setting aside time for each other to stay connected. Sometimes work means a lot more than that. Life is an imperfect adventure and we are flawed human beings. Challenges are a part of any life and relationship, so take them in stride and work through them one day at a time. Lean on each other, build each other up, and hang in there--it gets better.

A year ago, I wouldn't have given you these answers. It's amazing how much a year can change you. This year Chris and I bought a house, went through his accident, approached our doctor about the "next step" with fertility testing, and experienced a miscarriage. It has been a crazy roller coaster of emotions and experiences; and there have been many highs and lows for us. But a year changes a lot, and I'm excited to see what this next year brings us and our marriage. Embrace change, cherish each other, and enjoy the ride.

What do you admire most about your significant other? Oh so many things. I most admire what he does to take care of us and our future as a family. He is a good provider and is solid and steady that way. He is building a plan for his career, so that he can have a job he enjoys that allows him to spend time with our family. It's a pretty awesome thing to be a part of, as he goes out on his own after building so many years of gaining experience and a vision working for other people.

What was your first dance song?  My Best Friend by Tim McGraw. But in retrospect, it was a bad choice because I'm not really even a Tim McGraw fan (even though I love the song!), and Chris definitely isn't! Strangely enough, the last song of the night was the one I have the best memories of --we danced to "Tuesday's Gone" by Lynyrd Synyrd. (long story of how that started. lol.) We actually try to get it played at the end of the night at every wedding we attend now--including the one we were at before Chris' accident! It's kind of become a "thing" for us. :-)

Describe your significant other in 3 words. 3 words...just three? Practical, loyal, quiet

What is the worst thing that happened on your wedding day, if anything? Our photographer was just not what she made herself out to be. Not spending more on our pictures is my biggest regret! I would redo our whole wedding just to have better pictures.

Ryanne's Blog:  A Method in the Madness
As you've gathered, Ryanne is the wife of her husband, Chris.  She's mommy to her heavenly angel as well as her two fur-babies: their kitty, Jaye & pup, Kinley.  Ryanne has impacted me with her grace and perspective through the struggles she's faced through the ups & downs of trying to conceive, her husband's accident, and her recent miscarriage.  Ryanne reminds me that when things get tough, you can be upset or hurt and still manage to hold onto a positive outlook.  Thanks for sharing the powerful things you've learned in the last five years of being a newlywed!  Come back whenever you'd like!!!  And Happy 5th Anniversary!


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