The Truth About Marriage // What I’ve learned after one year.

Dear lovely readers,

Today is a special day for me. Today marks the day I made the most important, beautiful, and challenging decision of my life.

I got married.

Our love story is a long, complicated, wonderful tale that would take far too long to get into now. But after over four years of dating, Drew asked me to be his wife. It was a long time coming and I had no doubt that this was the way my life was supposed to go and was the right decision. Seven months after that, just days shy of my nineteenth birthday and weeks shy of our fifth anniversary, we vowed ourselves to each.

I usually prefer to say something witty like “we said I do” but for the purpose of this post and seriousness, I made a very candid decision to say ‘vowed’. Because, that is what we did and I’m still learning the significance of this.

I so wish I could say that this year of living together and marriage and huge milestones was pure bliss. But that isn’t the truth. And that isn’t marriage. And I was not prepared for that.

I need to be honest with you guys. Marriage is hard.

No one told me that. No one told me that I would spend nights screaming and crying and cursing. No one told me that I could feel so much anger towards someone. No one told me I could feel so hurt by someone. No one told me that sometimes I would have to walk out of my own house just to think clearly.

No one told me that I would feel such undying love. No one told me about the immeasurable tenderness I would feel pouring out of my heart. No one told me about the safety and peace I would feel listening to someone sleep beside me. No one told me the goals I would reach, and encouragement and pride I would eternally have by my side. No one told me about the butterflies I would get when planning a future with the one person I loved more than life itself.

But even though no one told me any of those things, we made it. We made it through our first year. People say that is the hardest year and I now understand. But we made it. Somehow we’ve come out the other side closer, stronger, and even more in love.

All those fights, all the words I wish I could take back, all those nights I shook with fury and sadness, all those nights lead to something greater. This year, living in close quarters and on our own for the first time, Drew and I learned to stop living as two separate people. It is a big change, but a wonderful change.

I know this post is saturated with unforgiving frankness and heaviness. I promise you though; marriage is hard, but it is also the most wonderful, happy, truly beautiful thing.

I talked about the gravity of a vow, above. That is something that I have come to learn the most about this year. I have learned so many lessons on life, marriage, and moving forward these past months. But this lesson was the hardest to admit to myself.

I share with deep shame that I have uttered the word “divorce” this year. Drew hopefully won’t mind me confessing for him that he has, too. In the heat of the moment, in the midst of learning to coexist, I spat words I will always regret.

For five years we played a balance game of weighing pros and cons, but always having an out. We never acted on it, never took a break, never gave up, but we knew it was there. There is no more ‘outs’ now. For better, for worse.

It took me a few months, lots of fights, and even more humility for this to finally sink in. I married this man. I vowed to always love him. To always be at his side. Eternally, forever. Even in the heat of the moment I don’t believe it, I am so lucky to have someone to fight with, to love, to have made the same weighty promise that fills my heart.

And that has made all the difference. Each fight that escalates, each time I shake with anger, I remember that this is who I am stuck with. There is no out, I can’t take back my vow. I better learn how to make it work.

And I am so thankful to be stuck with him.

Communication. Compromise. Those really are the backbones to marriage. With those tools, I have taken each day one at a time and never been happier.

Has this year been easy? No.
Has this year been hard beyond belief? Yes.
Would I want it any other way? No.
Am I the luckiest girl in the world? Yes.

So. One year later. Drew, I am so happy to be married to you. I am so proud of our progress and our love. Each day is an adventure and I am so glad to be on this journey with my best friend. You are the best thing that has ever happened to me and I am so proud to be called your wife.
Happy anniversary.

I love you.
— Brey