For our 10-year wedding anniversary, we opened up a time capsule of sorts in which we had put predictions and fun thoughts from our family as well as our own predictions, hopes, and promises for our first 10 years of marriage. Some of what we read through was humorous (one brother-in-law predicted we'd join the mile-high club) and some was wise (advice that marriage requires open communication and honesty). All of it has caused me to reflect on the past decade of marriage. Here are my thoughts.
1. Arguments will happen. One or the other of us will occasionally be in a bad mood, and even in an antagonistic one. What we fight over will rarely matter. What will matter is how we conduct ourselves during and after the fight. It really does take two to fight. If the issue really doesn't much matter to me, I've learned to stand down. If the issue is actually important (which it rarely is) then I will stay and fight, but that is when I must be careful to fight in the right way--without put-downs or blame (and this can be hard at times).
2. Humor really is the spice of life, and it has become the life of our marriage. We still make each other laugh and enjoy silliness even after 10 years of sharing the same stories and jokes.
3. Tough times can cause a great amount of stress and even threaten a marriage in the short-term, but when it is seen through, it ultimately strengthens the bond. Great people aren't born out of the good times, but out of trial and tribulation.
4. Dreams of perfection are just that--dreams. It takes work to achieve anything near perfection, and even then, perfection is rarely perfect. Marriages aren't 50/50. I have learned that I have to give 100% all of the time.