Today’s my five year wedding anniversary with Nate! When I was on my honeymoon, I remember thinking that the milestone anniversaries like 5, 10, 15 years were all sooo far away. And here we are at five years. Our wedding day was so much fun.
Every year on our anniversary I write a bit about what marriage feels like at the current stage. Five years isn’t all that long, but our marriage has already evolved multiple times. I like the advice of choosing to fall in love with a different version of the same person, over and over again. Nate and I are already different people than we were back in 2017 (and especially different from the people we were when we met in 2014!)
At his core, Nate is still the same person. Of course he is. But it’s safe to say that certain life experiences have changed his life reality. My values are the same, too, but I also know that the past few years of growing and raising two babies has profoundly changed me. But amidst those changes (maybe because of them?) marriage seems to keep getting better and better.
I don’t have a lot of marriage advice yet. In fact, I think I have less to say than I did back in 2019 when I had been married for two years. I thought I had it all figured out back then! Now I’ve been married just long enough to realize that I don’t actually know anything.
I think I got really lucky and married someone who is so easy to be married to. I don’t say this just because it’s what the internet wants to read…I truly mean it: being married to Nate is an absolute gift. He is so kind. He prioritizes time with people he cares about. He and I rarely argue about things, but whenever we do, he fights fair. He listens and cares and tries to see things from my perspective, and he’s always (always!) the first one to apologize…even when I was the one who was being difficult.
Year 5 of marriage is when we met our baby Dayton! Having him with us, our second (and final) child, feels so good. Our family of 4 is all here, earthside. I love watching Nate love his sons. If both of my boys could end up exactly like their dad, I would feel so proud. Kudos to my mother-in-law! She raised such a wonderful man.
After a rocky few months of life during our fourth year of marriage (new parents, pandemic, 8 surgeries, moving…it wasn’t my favorite year of marriage), this fifth year felt fun and light. Of course, two babies in the house isn’t easy, necessarily… But there’s a certain playfulness in every day. And even when we’re exhausted and craving quiet or social interactions or just a spur-of-the-moment date night out that can’t happen (did you know you have to plan date nights soooo far in advance once you have kids??), and no matter how frustrated we get while living in this Irrational Toddler Land, we will randomly break out into fits of laughter because kids are just sooo funny. We quote our toddler so often, we might have lost our ability to talk like normal adults.
The hardest thing about this stage of marriage is the lack of relaxation and goofiness. Life is balanced and going well, but it often feels like a grind. I think we’re doing a good job at caring for our children, taking care of the house, balancing our careers, fitting in a social life, and being intentional about time with each other. But the part that’s missing is the play. Nate and I love music festivals and drinking lots of craft beer, downtown concerts, loooong tasting menus where we can eat slowly and talk about every single course at a restaurant. We love cooking for friends and hosting people and throwing dinner parties. We love sleeping in and snuggling on the couch while he watches soccer and I read a book. These things all feel like such luxuries at this stage! I know they’ll happen again in our future, and I’m thankful that we were able to enjoy them in the past.
I often feel nostalgia for the first few years of marriage, when we lived in a small, beautiful house near downtown Austin and would walk to trendy cocktail bars, stay out late at Saturday night concerts and sleep in on the weekends. We spent many evenings cooking together (Nate cooked…I would sit on the bar stool and slowly drink wine and talk with him) and the hardest part about international travel was remembering to book a cat sitter through the Rover app. Those days were so fun! We thoroughly enjoyed them.
Of course, I wouldn’t trade what I have now (these two absolutely beautiful baby boys) in exchange for that. But I often look back at my past self, give her a wink, and tell her I’m happy she’s having fun.
Right now, at year five, I feel deeply thankful for my husband. I love him so, so much. Since our anniversary falls on a Friday this year, we’re going to celebrate it a day late. We have something really fun planned for this weekend. I’ll share it with you next week!
If you want to read any of my previous annual recaps, here ya go: