Real Love | 10 Years Down…Forever to Go!

My husband and I sign wedding cards usually by writing, “One day down, forever to go.” I thought it fitting to say the same thing concerning our 10 year anniversary today. 10 years ago today, after a few days of drama with family and friends, I walked down the aisle of First Family Church in Whittier, CA with my dad. My husband, Joshua standing at the stairs waiting patiently to take my hand. Beautiful music, written and performed especially for me by Grammy Award winning Wille Murrillo (on the  flugelhorn) and Russel Crain (on a classical guitar), played as I walked slowly towards my future husband. Our friends and family holding back tears of joy. Joshua’s uncle, Tim Storey officiating by way of jokes, celebrity references and “Do you take this woman, etc, etc.” All leading up the moment when Joshua and I kissed and began our new journey together.

So what have we learned 10 years later? What is the secret to our “happy” marriage? Here are ten things that we have discovered along the way:

1. You don’t fall in love…you choose to love. It’s a decision you make everyday; some days are easier than others.

2. Never say the “D” word (divorce). That word shouldn’t be part of your vocabulary…it can never be an option. Once you let it in…you create an out.

3. Dance. In living room, the bedroom, the park, at weddings, wherever. Find time to enjoy the simplicity of holding each other.

4. Be open. The worst thing you can do is hold in all the little things that frustrate you. Eventually the little stuff creates a big issue and you can’t help but explode. Be willing to talk even when you don’t feel like it.

5. Go for a walk and pass on the movies. Movies are great, but you can’t talk. After 10 years, there is still new things I learn about my husband every day.

6. Find a place to escape. We all need a little alone time every once in a while. I lock myself in the bathroom with some candles and take a break from being a mom, wife, planner to just breathe. My husband takes walks to Starbucks (it’s only 4 blocks from our house)…enjoys the fresh air and a cup of coffee. 

7. Say “I love you”. No, seriously…every day. Say it…it shouldn’t be assumed. And occasionally add why.

8. Leave the honeymoon behind. Realizing that each new phase of your relationship is different and beautiful in it’s own way can save you from feeling regret that it’s not what it used to be. Whether it’s the new home phase, or the new baby phase, or the new job phase or the loss in the family phase, enjoy and engage each new moment and don’t look back in disappointment because you don’t go out as much as you did when you were dating. 

9. Lie. Sometimes you have to lie. I gained a few pounds since our wedding day and my husband used to tell me it was because of the “damn” dryer. It was ruining all my clothes and making them smaller. I knew he was lying, but I appreciated it. I lie to him as well, when he makes his “famous”experimental spaghetti sauce that isn’t always as good as I tell him it is. He appreciates it as well.

10. Kiss. The simple act of touching lips seems to make everything better. It drowns out the phone calls, and the bills, and the crazy schedule. Kiss, if only for a moment…every day.

Wow, we learned a lot. Any other tips you would like to share…comment below. I’d love to hear them.

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7 thoughts on “Real Love | 10 Years Down…Forever to Go!

  1. Sandra says:

    Happy anniversary, Chara and Joshua! We’re right behind you with almost 9 years down, forever to go. Your list is great! Loved #10 and #3 (of course). 🙂 Only thing I’d add is to encourage one another–in the day-to-day stuff and in the “dream big” stuff.

  2. sedriknewbern says:

    Little sis… you covered them all, except for my favorite topic – Unconditional Forgiveness. Always be quick to forgive AND forget. We all continue to grow in life and relationship as we mature, but inevitably we will make mistakes along the way. These mistakes should be learning lessons for both of us. You have to be able to forgive your spouse just as you want to be forgiven when you made the mistake. Focus on doing what’s right instead being right!

    Outstanding lessons for us all! You guys are a true example of how loving couples actually do exist! Proud of you both.

    • swodeck says:

      Absolutely…forgiveness is key. Seems it’s so easy to hurt and piss each other off, by accident or sometimes when we get defensive. Why I love the idea of “choosing” to love…because it means you are choosing to move forward, together.

  3. April says:

    Funny, I don’t say “Forever to Go” because so many divorce so early and soon. I joke that after I hit the golden anniversary (50 years), he’s free to go his own way. Every year I count down to that. I don’t know how he truly feels about it because he uses #9 to make me feel better about it. I figure that both of us would be too lazy to use the “d” word. It’s less energy to kiss!

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