Tomorrow is my 7 years wedding anniversary. Given that my husband was driving me insane couple of weeks ago, I was really thinking, “big deal… 7 years is nothing, I know so many people who stuck together far longer than that.” You are right, I undermined it because that is what I do best.
I could’ve just turned the blind eye to post something positive, milking the last bit of magic my married life really is, but I feel that is not true either. It’s not always magic, especially when you are raising 2 boys under 6, running your own business, living far from your family and having challenges that most normal people have on any given day. This doesn’t mean we can’t celebrate what works, nor that we have to complain about what is, but to find some ground where we can both celebrate but remain real. That is what I am wanting to do with this writing.
In my work as a life coach, I share all of this, but it has taken me a minute to unleash it to the public. In part, I don’t do it because my one sided story always evokes the other side of the story. My truth is not the truth, only my truth so there is no reason to either say yay or nay to what I am about to say, but know, this is my attempt to be transparent so that hopefully some of my readers can benefit from it.
There is so much I can say about my marriage and how I found love, but I wanted to focus on things that I did that weren’t comfortable and were met with so much criticism back then and yet, I would argue that those very things set the tone for the marriage I have, a loyal bond, partnership filled with love where we each have a voice and can express it and peace is always found no matter how far the storm takes us.
I haven’t really attended a lot of weddings. When I was little, I tagged along with my mom and she took care of gift giving and alike. My past decades as an immigrant in United States, I attended 2 weddings, one was of my American sister for which I travelled cross country and another one was a friend. Both weddings were huge and the second resulted in an enormous debt. As someone who once consolidated credit card debt I was in to pay for my graduate school, I was not going to be in debt to get married.
My husband and I argued about this a lot, he wanted a big wedding no matter the cost, and I would’ve prefered to elope and use the money we have to invest in our lives together. We met in a middle, I was willing to spend our savings on the wedding but nothing was going to go on a credit card. I had numerous conversations about who I left out and probably more than 50% of the people at my wedding were family of my husband’s step mother I personally didn’t yet know.
But here is the thing, being burnt by the debt after my graduate school that I was finally out of had me not even entertain the thought of overspending. I bought my dress in David’s Bridal for less than $200. I ordered my bolero from China and it took a month or so for it to arrive and there was a risk it wouldn’t fit but I was willing to spend $24 to try. My late grandmother (my mom’s mom), who has been planting flowers for as long as I’ve known her, gave me some suggestions on flower arrangemnts so for less than $70, I bought all the flowers and made arrangments for the table and my own boquet. My restaurant experience as a bartender, manager and a hostess allowed me to ask for right things and tailor our wedding reception and dinner to get the most for my money. In a nutshell, I create for myself a celebration where I didn’t have to feel an overwhelm of the bills that would come after.
This level of participating in our own level, not managing ton of other people at great cost, but rather doing a lot of things ourselves, had me appreciate the entire event so much more as well as be in awe of our family and friends who came to celebrate with us. Even in this experience, I realized my accomodating nature: the location was convenient to my husband’s family, not mine… this was something we worked for and resolved as we did many other things in our living together for the past 7 years.
One of my favorite coaches told me once: “Anything is possible for as long as you are in communication.” So, I made an effort to always come to my husband and work through things that I was dealing with. When you are intimate with somoene, the shit gets real very fast. You have no place to hide so the things you’d normally cover up in front of others are exposed and hanging for your partner to see. You push each other’s buttons as if you were the one who put them there and there is a reason this is true: You always find a perfect match for things you need to work through to be what is possible for yourself to be. You can take the exit early on, but if you stick around, you will learn.
We were in love, we didn’t just love the idea of love. We planned our wedding together and moved through this process consciously. I sometimes look back at it and wish there was more glam in the whole process, but then again, I think taking this approach worked in our favor. We had everything we needed and support of those around us left me feeling in awe of who people are. This is why I celebrate.
Note: One of my angels on that day besides my husband: my uncle who moved heaven and Earth to be there and my close friend who took me through the whole process of what a wedding actually looks like and what I needed to be mindful off. Forever grateful ❤