When people first get married you always hear about the “honeymoon phase.” Everything is great and new and exciting. It’s the culmination of dating, falling in love, engagement and life choices.
People talk about the honeymoon phase ending, where couples sober up to the reality of life and are forced to either lean into commitment or face ever-increasing conflict.
You even hear about the “seven year itch,” where some people believe happiness declines in a long-term relationship, like all the good times have passed and it’s just a lifetime of tolerating each other or an exit point to try something different.
It’s funny, because Lacie and I are approaching the seven-year mark of marriage, and I told her recently that I’ve never been more happy to be her partner in life than I am right now.
And it’s not because we’ve had a perfect relationship up until this point. We’ve had loss, struggle, conflict, and disagreement just like any other human couple, but it seems to have ultimately been working for us and not against us.
The silly, small reminder that started this train of thought was when I noticed Lacie’s shoes on her parent’s patio. We were getting ready to go home from a couple-day stay at the lake, and I noticed her Vans were tucked under a patio chair.
Something about seeing her shoes and not wanting her to forget them stirred up a feeling inside of me that wasn’t birthed from burning infatuation but rather a steady commitment to wanting what’s best for her.
I know it seems like an arbitrary example, but it’s those things that ground me back in the idea that we are in this thing together, and even though most days aren’t fireworks, the subtle signs of a shared life experience remind me of why we set out on this thing called marriage in the first place.
Yes, I loved her a lot when we got married, and I don’t just still love her now, I love her even more especially now. If you let it, there is a love that can grow despite circumstances, even in light of circumstances.