Today Rock and I have been married 8 years. In total we have been together 13 years, soon 14. In 8 years of marriage, we have weathered storms, darkness, enjoyed the sunshine and the light, had three children, one dog and moved house 7 times, moved up and down the country for Queen and Country and finally left Queen and Country for Rock and Me. We’ve laughed. We’ve cried. We’ve held each other tight. Watched each other succeed. Seen each other fail. Kept each other strong. Held a light for each other in the dark. It feels as though we have already had a lifetime together. But a lifetime together will never be enough.
I find myself thinking back to us 8 years ago, we aren’t the same people, those people sometimes feel like strangers to me. I never imagined the tests we would face not just as a couple but individually. I never imagined that i could dislike Rock so viciously, that at times I could feel visceral anger and resentment towards him. I never imagined that we could diverge from each other so far apart that I could no longer see us finding a way to come back together. I never imagined the hard work it would take to build a bridge so that we could meet in the middle and come back together. Back then I thought I knew that marriage required hard work, that a happy marriage doesn’t just happen, but now I know I knew nothing.
I didn’t really appreciate how much we change individually as we react to our lives, our life. We become different people, and sometimes when we change into our ‘new’ selves we don’t automatically stay compatible, sometimes we are at odds until we work towards becoming complementary to each other again. I knew nothing of the tests and trials that would come to challenge us, I thought we would always face them together as a unit as a team. I didn’t realise that sometimes, we aren’t a team, sometimes we have to face those challenges as individuals and then work to become a team again.
I now know that sometimes you have to hold on to the memories of being a unit, of laughing together, of liking each other to get through the moments when you aren’t sure of each other.
I also didn’t know the joyful highs we would feel together, the first excitement of pregnancy, the highs of our children’s births, the pride I would feel in his success, the sense of companionship I could feel with him while we sit in twisted discomfort while our children sleep peacefully on us, the feelings of comfort and safety that he provides me with just his presence. No, it is safe to say 8 years ago Me is not Me today. We have learned, we have changed, we have experienced, we have raged, we have laughed and we have cried, but in the end we have been happy.
Now, onto the next lifetime…