Faith Encouragement, Marriage Encouragement

8 Life Lessons Learned in 8 Months of Marriage

My husband Stuart and I can’t believe it has been 8 months already! We decided it would be fun to consider what we’ve learned, where we’ve grown, and what has changed about ourselves during this time. I have grown into our marriage and myself a ton these past months. I’m excited to see where the rest of our marriage will lead us. So here you have it, these are the 8 life lessons learned in 8 months of marriage.

8 Life Lessons Learned in 8 Months of Marriage

Treat your role as a wife as a ministry.

Gone are the days when I could put off the washing or spend hours watching Netflix (okay, I swap sleep for Netflix on occasion). Much of my spare time is spent maintaining my husband. I won’t be shy about that truth. While he works full time and I part time, it is mainly my job to do the mundane, every day chores. My role as a wife is a ministry of servitude. Have I forgotten my ministry as a wife? is a great blog post on this topic. I try to do chores as willingly, happily, and lovingly as possible these days. I’ve also adopted a “yes policy” with most things, which I will also make an entire post dedicated to.

Make time for one another.

We are on a budget currently and it can be a challenge to figure out “date night” ideas. We’re both simple people and generally having a good chat is enough for the both of us though. No phones, computers, or iPads to interfere. We make the time to put those away to focus on one another for at least an hour a day.

Self-control is hard, but worth it.

A lot of my time is dedicated to maintaining Stuart’s sanity because he works at least 50 hours per week. Some days I hate the thought of making dinner and doing laundry. Self control means keeping this to myself though.

It would suck if my husband decided that he didn’t want to wake up at the crack of dawn every day to go to work. But he does get out of bed. Every day. At 5 AM. Without EVER complaining. It is my job to return that favor and have dinner on the table each day without moaning about it. I can say however that I practically whoop with joy whenever we eat round a friends house.

8 Life Lessons Learned in 8 Months of Marriage

You have to spell it out for your man.

It is good practice to tell your man exactly what you want. Tell him you want chocolates and flowers for Valentine’s Day. Don’t make it guess work for him! Likewise, lay it on the line for him that you expect him to verbalize his desires for you as well so that you know exactly what he needs too. When I need something from Stuart, I let him know exactly what I want so that it saves both of us a headache. It is easy to assume that they will figure it out but I can guarantee you that they won’t… no matter how hard you hint. You may know your other half inside and out but that doesn’t mean we can read minds.

Give each other space.

When one of us is moody with the other it is mutually agreed that that person needs “laptop time”. Laptop time essentially means free time away from each other. We occasionally have laptop time on the couch together where we watch YouTube videos or read books separately. Other times I will go clean my makeup brushes or take a shower while he winds down with a cup of tea and some Netflix. However it is done, you will need mental space apart on occasion!

8 Life Lessons Learned in 8 Months of Marriage

 Keep your girlfriends close.

Your girlfriends have too much advice to keep to themselves! Take advantage of that. Whether it is them or me, we need a girlfriend to lean on when it comes to the tough parts of marriage. It is important to have those friendships so you can unload without burdening your partner, especially if your feelings won’t benefit your relationship.

Learn each other’s love language.

My hubby is big on physical affection and “acts” of love. For example, he receives love by hugs and kisses and physical touch. He also loves it when I go above and beyond to show him I care through actions. This might be as simple as making him three cups of tea in one evening or packing his lunch for work. It really is the small things that add up to say “I love you”. My personal love language is words of encouragement and acts of love. Stuart is sure to compliment me, encourage me, and remind me of how much he appreciates me. Uprooting myself to move abroad has made me a bit more anxious than usual and so when Stuart does these things for me I feel 10x more at ease with marriage and life in general.

Couples that pray together stay together!

Praying with and for each other is food for the spirit and soul. Prayer encourages you to stay compassionate, loving, and sensitive to your partners struggles and insecurities. It is a great way to tune into your partner and meet their needs.

Granted, it took me awhile to catch onto the idea that marriage is a form of ministry. Now that I understand my role as a wife it is a lot easier to oil the machine that is marriage and glorify God by doing so. And there you have it ladies, the 8 life lessons learned in 8 months of marriage. Feel free to comment and share any advice you might have as well!

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About Rachel Chamberlayne