One Year Later10:30 AM
We have survived the first year of marriage, woot-woot! And to celebrate, how about posting some film photos that I have been hoarding for almost as long? And by hoarding I mean my brother & sister in-laws who took the the time to take all of our engagement photos, and all of our wedding photos, while one of them was also standing in the wedding, gave me a flash drive with these on them and I just downloaded them yesterday.
Shh, don't tell anyone.
"Does it feel different to be married?" for the first few weeks I would roll my eyes at this. Kyle and I had been together for over 11 years when we got married, and had lived together for almost eight of those years. So how could being married be different?
It isn't, not really. I honestly feel that after every major event in my life, something becomes more apparent, and when I am able to recognize it, I start to change. Back in 2003 when I moved to Yipsilanti, MI to start school, I decided to get an apartment with Brian (Kyle's twin) because we would be going to the same school, and the apartments were hundreds of dollars cheaper. Little did I know that it was a requirement for freshmen at Eastern Michigan University to live on campus. I changed my status to 'commuter', thinking that I had found a way around the system, only to have my student loans cut in half. Long story short, I ended up back in my parents house by December, and enrolled in community college. Did I feel any different as a college student? Yes. I felt like a big fat failure.
A year and a half later, I am doing OK. I have a job, and am in school. Not really loving either of them, but living. Kyle and I decide to get our own apartment together. This time I am confident. Kyle and I split all of the bills in half, I took boring classes, I worked at a job I hated. But I had Kyle, my cats, and my own space. I also went into credit card debt trying to pay for my classes (what are student loans even?), and I gained a lot of weight by eating fast food. What is cooking? Did I feel any different having my own apartment? Limited freedom I guess, not really sure if it was worth it.
Fast-forward to 2010 and I am enrolled at Oakland, Kyle and I have a house, Louie, and are planning a wedding. Did I feel any different? Yes, I was overwhelmed. But, I was starting to feel happy.
Come October of 2012, I thought I would be completely happy. I was done with school, the wedding was over and done with, we could finally focus on our house! I felt relieved.
Then Kyle was rushing around trying to get caught up in his classes. By being in school and working, his schedule was different than mine. Also, we had more family obligations to attend to. With Kyle being so busy with work and school, I was left with all of the household duties and it finally sunk in just how much larger our house is compared to our old apartment.
Where are we now? Kyle is still working and going to school. Because I have to be at work earlier than him, our schedules are still very different. Our house is still the same size, and we still have family obligations. Life is still very overwhelming at times.
So what is different? Just like with the previous events in my life, I learned to become more independent. I know that it sounds strange, you get married, you are supposed to be a team, you have each other, and that is all very true. But sometimes, it all comes back to if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself.
I didn't like my classes, so I changed my major and forced myself to do better. I hated my job, so I quit and found another. I hated the next job, stuck it out until something better came along. I hated how I looked, so I lost weight. I hated having credit card debt, so I bought things second-hand and learned how to cook. I wanted us to have our own garden and our own space to personalize, so we bought a house. We wanted to be married, so we got married. No matter how much I don't want to do a load of laundry, or clean the bathroom, I still do it. I get exhausted, I get frustrated, but I know that I need to do these things, as much as I wish for a house elf to appear to give me a hand, it is on me. Same thing for Kyle, if he wants to pass his class, he has to stay up late and finish his paper. We still support each other, we are still there for each other. Sometimes I fall asleep at 8pm because I am just worn out, and Kyle is stuck washing underwear after he gets done with a closing shift. Or we just go commando ;)
I guess what I am saying is that I had assumed that at this point in my life, things would be easier. Sometimes they are, sometimes they are not. We are still learning, and growing. We are still dealing with all of the shit we get ourselves into, and as much as we drive each other crazy at times, we still love each other. So I guess it does feel different, but people change, adapt, and grow throughout their lives. So we will probably feel different next year, and the years to come. But, it is a good different, a happy different.