Josh and I just celebrated our three year wedding anniversary (March 14th) and shortly before that… our nine year dating anniversary. At the ripe old age of 27 I have shared the last nine years of my life with the same person. Since high school, to be exact.
We do things a little out of order around here. We started dating in our teens, bought a house and had babies in our late teens/early twenties, then got hitched, and then had one more baby. But the way we do things works for us.
For some, we are the ultimate love story. To others, we are to be pitied until our dying day for having not experienced enough promiscuity (I think?) But oddly enough I don’t find myself wishing I had gone back and experienced more of that. haha. I think we faced a lot more “concern” in the earlier years. People are just naturally cynical, I think, and assumed that we wouldn’t last. Then, of course, we were “only together for the kids.” Honestly, only now, in our late 20s do most people find it endearing as opposed to judging us.
I’m not one to overly romanticize things… but I tend to side with us being the ultimate love story (as I’m sure most people do about their own spouse.) And ya know what… our story isn’t always romantic. After nine years together we’ve seen our share of good, bad, and really ugly. Also, after only two years together (we were 18 and 19) I fell pregnant with our first son. So I quite literally don’t know how to be a grown up without Josh by my side. SO basically, hate him or love him… I need him. Just kidding. 😉
There are about a million reasons that being married to my high school has been pretty cool…
Josh and I got to date basically as kids for a whole 2 years. We fell for each other completely; because there simply wasn’t anything else yet. No jobs, no payments, no real life responsibilities to consider… just us.
We didn’t have to worry about learning to fit someone into our busy adult lives because the other was already there from the get go. We didn’t have to endure the awkward phase of finding out if our grown up priorities aligned because we had sort of grown up together. And growing up together kind of makes you like a lot of the same stuff… as your late adolescent years shape a lot of the interests and values that you hold on to. For instance, we both love to travel and we both hate pickles. You know, the important stuff.
Josh knew (and knows) that I am stubborn, I am filterless, and I am bossy. He knew this before I had (mostly) learned to tone these traits down for adulthood. He (mostly) learned to maneuver through these attributes of mine with impressive skill, tricking me into thinking that I’m in complete control at all times. 😉
I didn’t have to bother sharing any of my embarrassing coming of age experiences because Josh was already there for most of them. There is so much value in having learned how to communicate before learning how to do so as an adult. We worked out so many of our initial fights as irrational adolescents but we fought passionately and without the restraint that comes with maturity. In so many ways this was a good thing as far as revealing what we were really feeling about issues that came up early on. And how angry we were feeling about said issue…like playstation-sized hole in the wall angry. (I would never throw a playstation now. Real life is too expensive for that nonsense. Seeeee, maturity. 😉 )
Oftentimes, we are faced with the judgement that we couldn’t possible have “discovered ourselves” while staying with someone we’ve been with since high school. But of course, I disagree. I think that our relationship is that much stronger because ‘who we are’ was really arrived at together. We grew up together. Our adult selves are really intertwined, as they have never existed on their own. I don’t feel that my life is lacking any more self discovery than anybody else’s; just that I’ve always had the same person to fall back on throughout those experiences. I’ve had the same person to love me through the rollercoaster that is life.
For the most part, I just think that I’m really lucky. I haven’t found Josh to be limiting. In fact, I know that I have experienced more things with him than I would have on my own. He taught me how to drive stick shift, he cries during sappy movies, and he held my leg while I was in labor… three times. He’s loved me through all my shapes and sizes and never once failed to make me feel like I was a the prettiest girl in his world. He finds a way to make everything that I want into a reality, rarely says no to any of my crazy dreams or ideas, and quite frankly…spoils me rotten. I’m pretty sure it’s the companionship that most of us are looking for; at 17 and 27.
Happy three years married (but nine years together) to this hunky guy. Thanks for making being a grown up so much fun. <3