Marriage advice like the one we’re delighted to share today–too long to publish in full in V6, but so tremendously heartfelt and impactful, is one of the biggest reasons we decided to share each piece of advice on the Southern Weddings blog this year. We reached out to Kitti Murray at our friend Katie‘s suggestion, and when we read Kitti’s words of wisdom, we were so overjoyed that we did!
Life, especially the married parts, is not about what you get, but all about what you give. And that’s what makes marriage so hard. It requires sacrifice. My husband and I do a lot of pre-marriage counseling, and the thing we hear most often at the one-year check-up is, “I had no idea I was so selfish.” I’ll be honest here–me too.
The other day, I asked my husband just what exactly I had contributed to our marriage. It was one of those times when I felt my side of the donation ledger was slim compared to his. A day when I felt like the luckier one. He said, “You have worked really hard to know me.”
So there you have it, perhaps the noblest sacrifice in marriage. Working hard to stay thin, interesting, funny, sexy, all those things we think matter to our husbands, pale compared to knowing. It turns out getting to know each other, that thing you did so easily when you were falling in love, is a bigger deal than you thought it was. It means time, in our case, thirty-five years of afternoon coffee dates, quiet dinners, weekends wherever we could afford to get away, lunches, and “tea times” after the kids went to bed. It means listening. It means giving gifts tailored to each other instead of those awkward “why would I want this?” gifts. My husband and I are polar opposites, so it means finding a way to not only accept our differences, but to downright celebrate them. And–here’s the best part–it means the wonder never ends, because there’s always something new to know.