Some people say marriage is a 50-50 partnership.
Bologna, I say. If you’re not giving 100 percent, you’re not doing your part.
Today marks the wedding anniversary of my wife and me, which gives me one more year’s confidence that maybe I know what I’m doing.
This one has a little added significance for me. I’ve now been a married adult longer than I was a single adult.
I married a little later in life, although most of my hair was still dark at the time. I spent a decade on my own, long enough to get stuck in my ways and think I knew something about life.
Sure, I’d worked in several places and seen some things. It wasn’t until recently that I realized I’d never really lived, though.
Living isn’t doing what makes you happy. Living is doing what makes someone important to you happy, simply because it makes her happy.
It took a long time to realize I wasn’t the most important character in my life’s story. It took marrying the right person.
I’m not the perfect husband. I didn’t marry the perfect wife. Together, though, we’re a perfect couple, perfectly suited for each other. I find strength when she needs it. She finds tenderness when I need it. We both find laughter when nothing seems funny anymore.
It only works because we’re completely and totally dedicated to each other.
There are times it feels like I’m working a little harder on our relationship. There are times I realize I’m not putting enough energy into it. Life’s funny that way, when we get distracted by unimportant things.
I don’t honestly remember single life anymore. I have a few anecdotes about adventurous things that happened over the years, but they’re just stories. There’s nothing about me capable of living those stories now.
My life and my heart are built around my wife and children now. That’s where I want to be.
I heard plenty of advice before I got married all those years ago. Make sure you get a night a week away. Keep separate bank accounts. Always have an exit strategy.
I’m happy to say I never followed any of that advice. It turns out most of the people offering marriage advice had unhappy marriages.
So take it from a guy who’s never had a bad day of marriage, despite several days that could’ve been awful: If you love fully and completely, 100 percent of the time, and your spouse does the same, you’ll never look back.