*This is meant for June 8th. Technology has near me and we are going on vacation so…
One year ago today, I married my best friend. I made the big decision to stick myself with someone for the rest of my life. I am so glad. That was the best decision of my life. During this first year of marriage, I have learned a lot. I don’t count myself as an expert of marriage at all. Far from it actually. I’m only a year in- you can’t be an expert after a year. I have learned a lot though, and I felt like sharing what I know. Bear with me, please.
1. Marriage exposes your messes.
This can be literal physical messes as well as spiritual, emotional messes. I’m going to be really open and honest about the physical messes I can create. I am slightly a pig. I hate being dirty and bugs and germs and what not, but I will at one time have 4 pairs of shoes in our teeny tiny living room. I will change clothes in the bathroom and find them there, laying on the floor, a week later. I regularly miss the trashcan when I shoot my cotton balls in there, and I find myself too busy to bend over and pick up the miscellaneous items until I am ready to empty the trash can. I’ve always been messy; I’m sure my mother will agree to that, but Nat didn’t know that until we got married. When we were dating, I could clean up my mess before he came over. It is really hard to hide your mess when you live in the same place all of the time.
I am also a spiritual, emotional mess almost every other day. Nat has seen the most vulnerable side of me, as well as the most selfish, ugly side of me. You can’t hide from the person you share a bed with. You just can’t. I have realized in this one year how sinful I am, and how much I need Jesus. Thankfully, marriage also gives you a person to help point you to Jesus when you are too messy to do it yourself.
2. Marriage makes you married.
I’ve had talks with single friends about marriage and the desire to be married. We’ve talked about wanting to not be insecure and to be complete and comfortable. Well, my friends, let me break it to you- marriage doesn’t make you less insecure, it doesn’t make you more complete, it doesn’t make you more comfortable: it just makes you married.
Marriage is a blessing, without a doubt, but marriage doesn’t make you automatically perfect. Marriage doesn’t make your life easier. Marriage makes you married. It is only Jesus that makes you more ______. Well, maybe marriage makes you a little more crazy…maybe 🙂 You can fill in that blank with any adjective you want marriage to create in you. It won’t- only Jesus can. That is a hard pill to swallow- I still am choking it down. I expected to be more secure and confident immediately after I said “I do.” Sorry, friends, I think i’ve only become more aware of my insecurities…but, Jesus makes me more.
3. You can’t be embarrassed in marriage.
Like I said above- you can’t hide your messes in marriage.
Sure, you can avoid doing certain things in front of your spouse (burping, farting, having to go to the bathroom at weird times, etc) for awhile. Eventually, though, you will do something that you didn’t want to do before you were married. Remember, you live together- all of the time. There is only so much you can hide until you can’t hide anymore. You can spend your life trying to avoid embarrassment, or you can accept the fact that you are a human, you make mistakes, and just laugh about it. If I gave myself a nickel every time I said something that should have been embarrassing, I would have an entire bag of nickels. Instead of crying in embarrassment like I would have, Nat and I have instead had many many belly laughs. Seriously, laughter is much more fun than hiding.
4. It is hard to get used to changing your name.
Let me be frank here, I was Sarah Werre for 23 years. You CANNOT expect me to be 100% used to being Sarah Scott in less than a year. Give me some time people… Who cares if I sign my name incorrectly? Why does it matter if I still refer to myself as Sarah Beth Werre when I speak to myself in the 3rd person?
I need more than a year to get used to habit I have had for 23. Does anyone agree?
5. Marriage can be the best or it can be the worst.
Seriously, I have learned that it is a choice. Marriage can be a joy and a blessing, or it can be a pain in the arse.
I have had to bite my tongue and cool my temper more time that I ever thought I would have to- that is the worst.
I have had to control my sass and apologize when I didn’t want to- that is even worse!
I have had incredible ab workouts from laughing with my husband- the best
I have felt loved and affirmed by a man who deals with all of my stuff on a daily basis- even better.
I truly believe that marriage is a choice. You choose to be a part of your marriage. You choose to enter in and be present. You choose to allow the Lord to be the center of your marriage. It is all a choice. Marriage can be hard, and has been hard, even when we choose to be present with each other, but making the choice is what counts.
Now remember, it has only been a year. I may have no idea what I’m talking about and next year I might be whistling a totally different tune, but right now- this is what I have learned.