As I write this post, Garrett is currently passed out on the couch in his suit. On a couch, in a living room, in a home that we completely outgrew ten months ago, but we just need to deal because Los Angeles is crazy expensive. The boys all went to bed an hour after their bedtime, but that’s okay because we played a riveting game of Spot It, and we were both too tired to crack our whips. The house is covered in tiny stinky socks and shoes. Remnants of breakfast, lunch, and dinner are scattered all over the floors, and Bradley unloaded the school paper pile to end all paper piles all over the kitchen table.
We’ve finally reached ten years of marriage. What a huge milestone! It might have felt like I was complaining, but I can assure you that as I stood there thinking about our ten years together, I was 100% happy and 100% content in that exact moment. Garrett and I have been through a lot these past ten years (most recently taking an amazing anniversary trip together), and I am so lucky and so proud to be his wife. We were talking the other night about the past ten years and all the ways that we made it work, and I thought I’d share a few things we have really tried to incorporate into our relationship that have helped us get through it all.
5 Things We’ve Learned Over the Past 10 Years of Marriage:
R-E-S-P-E-C-T. You respect him and he respects you. It’s funny how at the end of the day, it’s easiest to brush off the thoughts and feelings of the people you care most about. Maybe it’s because we spend most of our days working for and/or pleasing other people, that by the end of the day we are just too tired and all we want to do is zone out. But we have found that mustering up even 30 minutes to sit down together after a long day to talk and listen really helps keep us tune into one another. Keeping up small acts of kindness (filling up the gas tank, taking out the trash when the other person forgets, and not getting upset about it, offering to get the kids ready for bed, etc.) can really work wonders with how your spouse will treat you in return.
Never try to make a big (or little) decision together when you are tired or hungry. In our church on the first Sunday of each month we have a “fast Sunday,” which means we go without food for 24 hours. Those Sundays are definitely days we steer clear of any type of lengthy discussion because before we know it, we’re super passionate about who has the correct pronunciation of that Pokemon card.
Keep dressing to impress. I write this with zero makeup, a three-day-old messy bun on top of my head, and no shower today. I’m not a vision of luxury right now, but I do know the importance of dressing up just for him. Because you want to look pretty for him and he should want to look good for you. A lot can be said for a nice fitting suit! Garrett and I have our fair share of casual dates, but it is so much fun to get dressed up just for each other sometimes. Garrett has great style, so I can always count on him to come up with something classic and well cut after a trip to Nordstrom. I love when he puts on one of his favorite slim fit button up-shirts and his favorite slacks for a night out.
Make their goals your goals. When you are truly genuinely interested in your spouse and their goals, magic happens between the two of you. One of my favorite quotes by one of my favorite people, President Hinckley, is “I’ve tried to recognize my wife’s individuality, her personality, her desires, her background, her ambitions. Let her fly. Yes, let her fly. Let her develop her own talents. Let her do her things her way. Get out of her way, and marvel at what she does.” There are so many great marriage gems from this talk. Garrett read this quote about 4 years ago when I was hard at work with my clothing line and Elle Apparel. He thought long and hard about asking me to slow things down and not to put so much time and effort into it. Instead, he took the words of this quote to heart and became my biggest cheerleader. It’s the biggest (and sometimes only) reason I have stuck with my work for so long. I have tried to do the same for him in law school and throughout his career. When you have your spouse as your biggest supporter, it can push you to accomplish things that would be much harder to do alone. It is also really nice to have someone to celebrate the victories with.
Apologize. Because apologizing feels way better than winning the argument. As much as you know you are right, holding a grudge or going to bed angry solves nothing. And there’s nothing better than waking up in a good mood, on a good note, with your spouse.
It’s been an amazing ten years so far! As much as I can’t wait to see what the next ten years brings, I’m content to soak up every part of our life together right now.
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