Everyone hears the stories of marriage bliss after a loved one returns home from a long trip or deployment but the one you rarely hear is the sometimes difficult transition back into married life.
When Elton came home after months of being away, I was so excited to finally live together and experience the husband-wife life. There was this idea in our minds of a fairytale marriage; sleeping in on the weekends and cooking breakfast together, falling asleep and waking up side-by-side, split household work, movie nights, and exploring the area we will call home for the next two years.
See, Elton left two days after we moved into our first home together so he wasn’t able to help decorate the house or really experience what it would be like to live together. The first few months of having my own house felt exactly like that; MY own house. The sad reality was that it felt like he just rented out a room for storage (my fellow military wives know what it’s like to have a whole closet dedicated to their gear). I was so used to grocery shopping and cooking for one, only doing laundry or running the dishwasher once a week because I didn’t leave too much to be done, and even the obsessive constant cleaning just to keep myself busy. Then when I brought our puppy, Koda, home I created a schedule for him that we stuck to each day. It was just a seemingly endless cycle.
I got a text one night that Elton was coming home the next night and I was so excited that I couldn’t contain myself. I quickly made sure the house was in order and that our fridge was stocked (beer is a must in our household), and I could barely sleep that night. Finally, the time came for me to pick him up and the minute he pulled up my heart felt like it was going to leap out of my chest. That first kiss made the time apart so worth it. When we got home, he finally got to meet his little boy and Koda immediately loved his daddy! That night was full of cuddles and missed kisses, as well as a plan of our make-up date nights.
He has been home for two weeks now and it has been so great, but we are still getting used to living together. When it was only me, the house seemed spotless because I was in charge of picking up after myself and the puppy. Now that there are three of us, doggy toys are always on the ground, gear laying around the house, the couch pillows and blankets a constant mess, and our fridge that resembles a black hole – fully stocked one day and empty the next. I have times when I’m randomly cranky but he does his best to stay patient with me. He sometimes comes home from a long day at work but only wants to play the PlayStation, while I cook dinner and clean the kitchen. This is all a transition and we both have to live with certain things that may annoy each other but the important thing is that we learn to love through each imperfection.
Everyone says that the first year of marriage is the most difficult, and as we have been married for seven months but only physically together for about a month, we are definitely experiencing that. We’re like every couple, there’s bickering, disagreements, compromises, but most importantly there’s a whole lot of love. With every stormy day comes a rainbow and every day that I have my husband by my side is a miracle I never want to take for granted. Things get hard when you go months without seeing your spouse so it is very important to make the most of any time you have together. Marriage isn’t always easy but it is always 100% worth it for the person you love.
My piece of advice to everyone out there is to always remind your loved ones how much they mean to you, always kiss your husband, wives, kids goodnight and say “I love you” before you leave; every minute you have with your loved ones is precious.