Ryan and I were together for 6 years by the time we got married, and being married is a completely different realm than dating or even being engaged for that matter. With marriage comes trust, eternal love, stability, support, the knowing that no matter what happens in life, you can always count on that other person, your partner, your soulmate. Being married to Ryan is the best thing that’s ever happened to me, and I thank God everyday for bringing him into my life, even if it took longer than I wanted!
For those of you that don’t know, Ryan was my first boyfriend, EVER! I talked to/dated other guys but it was never anything serious. I can remember being so lonely and sad thinking I would never find love. I was convinced my mom jinxed me by jokingly saying to me before she dropped me and my friend off to a high school football game, “Put some lipstick on Katelyn; you’re never going to get a boyfriend.” LOL! But God knew what he was doing. He made me go through all the trials and tribulations of dating so that when I met THE one, I would know it! And boy was He right! I knew Ryan was the one from the moment I met him. I remember being scared of the future and what it would entail for us, and I told him, “You’re the type of guy I would want to marry, and I’m just a freshman in college.” Silly Katelyn!
Ryan and I have now been married for one year and are officially no longer newlyweds. Even though we are nowhere near professionals to this whole marriage thing and we don’t have the secret to a successful marriage, I would still like to think that we’ve learned a lot over this past year that is worth sharing with you guys. Here are four things about us and our marriage.
Coming together as one.
When you get married, you are two people becoming one unit, one family. Now I’m not saying you give up who you are as an individual. You are joining your partner, and together, you make each other stronger and better than you did alone in so many ways. There’s a reason they say “two is better than one.” One of the main things that I love about being married is the parts from your families that you bring to your marriage that help shape your new family. There are things from the way Ryan was raised that we do together, and vice versa, things that I contribute to our relationship that are from my family. It can be little things like recipes, holiday traditions and our work ethic. But also important qualities of loyalty, commitment, strength, courage, and love that we were taught during our upbringings that we have shared with one another. This is something that is so important to me. The Gross’ and the Ehrhardt’s shaped me and Ryan into the people we are today. But we also have been enjoying making our own family traditions and rules together as Mr. and Mrs. Ryan Ehrhardt. So don’t be fully set on doing things how you were raised, or think that how your family does things is better than your partner’s. It’s all about balance!
Being each other’s top priority.
Ryan is my top priority. He comes first over everything! Not that he didn’t before we were married. Now it’s just more official ha! And if you asked him, he would say the same thing about me. When you are married, a great sigh of relief is knowing that you have this support system 24/7. Ryan is my cheerleader, and to be honest, he believes in me more than I believe in myself. We push each other to be the best versions of ourselves, and we often see potential in each other that we didn’t know we had ourselves. Ryan was actually the one who pushed me to start this blog. Working in PR, he knows what I do on a regular basis for my job. And after I won two giveaways from bloggers I follow, he said, “Why don’t you start your own blog?” He knew that I love fashion and beauty products and get asked for advice from my friends all the time so he knew this was something I could share with a bigger audience. This is just one example of how Ryan supports me, loves me, and shows that I’m his top priority. I’m so thankful God gave me this man who loves me and supports me to the fullest.
The battle between productivity and spending quality time together.
I am being honest with y’all, this is something I personally struggle with almost everyday! For me, there is always something we could be working on, from projects around the house to everyday life tasks. I always have a to-do list! The weekends can be tough to balance because we have a lot to get done, such as things like cutting the grass, fixing the toilet, running errands, engagement parties, birthday dinners, weddings. The list goes on and on. But the biggest part about being recently married is I just want to hangout with my husband ALL day! I constantly miss him if we aren’t together!
During the work week, it’s hard to spend a lot of quality time together because we are both busy with full-time jobs and are tired by the time we see each other. On Saturdays I typically wake up early and let Ryan sleep in. I try and do as many “chores” as I can before he wakes up. This way I’ve had a productive morning, and once he wakes up we can spend quality time together without feeling like we are wasting the day. But no matter how much work I get done, I will always have a to-do list. I can’t get done everything I want to, and I can’t commit to everything I want to do. Recently, I’ve been learning the power of saying “no” because if something is affecting my time with Ryan, that’s not okay with me. He comes first. Just because your spouse is always there for you doesn’t mean you should neglect them. You should work even harder to make them feel special and to spend quality time with them, even if it means you are less productive.
Patience is absolutely a virtue.
From my story above about waiting on Ryan, God has been trying to teach me patience almost my entire life haha! Patience is something I think every couple struggles with mastering, and that’s okay! It takes time to learn each others’ qualities, the good and the bad. For me, it’s how Ryan can be messy and leave items all over the house. For Ryan, it can be that I’m not always the best listener or I talk over him. It’s important in these moments when you become frustrated to remain calm. We’ve learned the hard way that getting aggravated or bottling this frustration up is not the best solution to the problem. That normally leads to one of us flying off the handle. When either of us gets frustrated by something the other has done, we will let each other know, we sincerely apologize and promise to work on these things. Patience people! Just as it’s super important to have patience during these times, it’s just as important to recognize and celebrate those small wins of overcoming the bad qualities. When Ryan picks up after himself without me asking him to do so, I thank him and tell him how appreciative I am of his help! If I intently listen without interrupting Ryan, he thanks me and tells me how proud he is of me! Focus on the good, not just the bad.
What are some things you’ve learned from your marriage or relationship?