I met my husband way back when at the age of 19 (barely), and just beginning my sophomore year of college. We were friends for a year or so, until we decided that we were being RIDICULOUS and being friends was sort of a joke and we should just DATE ALREADY. Trust me, this was the best decision I ever made! He is everything I didn’t know I needed then, and has so many qualities that make him the best husband and father. I am really, really lucky.
I feel really lucky to have him because when we decided to date, and eventually marry, I didn’t really know all that I should have about him. I went on pure gut instinct, knowing I adored and loved him, that we obviously got along really well, and that he made me laugh. I never thought about how we would parent together, or figure out finances, or any of the important stuff. I just knew I needed him in my life for the long haul and it has (obviously, 15 years and two kids later!) worked out REALLY WELL. Ha.
Here are the top five reasons we are meant to be (and great reasons for any couple to make it in marriage!)
1) The most important thing that I always come back to when I think about my husband is that he makes me laugh. There is so much joy for me to just hang out with him and laugh about the same things, and to have him around to make me laugh, always. I just plain ENJOY being with him, be it in the car and not taking for an hour, out on a romantic date, walking around Disney World, or sitting on the couch at night. He is hands down my favorite person to be with.
2) One of the things I am most grateful for is that we have very similar parenting philosophies. We back each other up when it comes to discipline, we trust each other when it comes to making discipline decisions, and we want the same things when it comes to goals for our children. If we disagree on something related to our kids (which is RARE), we talk about it when we are alone and figure it out, but for the most part we always agree. This is so important! To have each others’ backs in parenthood is so important, and to be with a man that has the same ideas as me when it comes to our kids is really important.
3) We both have the same mindset when it comes to our finances! I look at our marriage as a team, and managing our finances is a major team effort. We both agree on how we want to save and spend our money, and we both work towards short and long term financial gals. Neither one of us makes large purchases without letting the other know, and we come up with goals of how we want to spend out money. Our short term goals involve saving for events (Disney next year, paying off new cars within two years, refinancing the house to lower the payment, etc), and our long term goals are for our life in the next 60 years or so (saving for retirement, putting away money for the kids’ college funds, paying off any debts early, etc.) We don’t have credit cards and pay for everything in cash (except the house and new car, which we pay off as quickly as we can!) We check in constantly with our money and change goals as our needs change.
4) We have similar views on how we spend our time. While my husband and I are actually pretty dissimilar in what we like (he’s super into sports, hates clothes and style, loves Star Wars and man time and all things GUY), we match up in how we like to live. I am a huge reader (as you know), and he loves watching sports and stuff on the Discovery channel. We both love being at home and having downtime, so most likely you will find us at home together, with him watching football and me reading a book. We like quiet dinners and hanging out as a family, and good food. We like creating great memories with the kids (and rolling our eyes when they drive us NUTS), establishing traditions, and spending time together. He is a real family man and I love that about him, and our life together.
5) We balance each other. When we first met I felt like we were pretty different from each other. As you marry and move in you have to learn to meld your lives together and if you are raised differently than the other this can be a hot mess! (Learning to live with someone is HARD.) Over time we have changed for the better, and I think this is the influence we have on each other. I have learned to be less impulsive and to make better financial decisions, and he’s learned to loosen up a bit and to go with the flow. We each take charge where we are strongest and balance each other out. He’s the one that does our 401K planning, prints out the insurance info for the car, gets our tax info together, and researches cars. I’m the one that buys the kids their clothes, plans their school stuff, brings them to their well check ups, and does most of the laundry and grocery stuff. We both help out where we can, but for the most part we do what we are best at and meet in the middle. I don’t have to worry about cleaning out the sprinkler lines and he doesn’t have to worry about what to bring to our son’s Thanksgiving feast at school. It just works.
Tell me, what makes your marriage/relationship work?