What Our First 10 Days As Newlyweds Taught Us About Marriage

A few things every couple needs to know about this exciting time.
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Monica Gabriel Marshall
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A few things every couple needs to know about this exciting time.
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Art Credit: Taylor McCutchan

Let’s hope that by the time you hit the altar, you have a pretty good idea of what you’re getting into—namely marriage. But no matter how much you have prepared or how many friends you have consulted, chances are marriage will still come as quite a surprise. The truth is, the fact that you're actually married will start to hit you somewhere in those first ten days. One couple shared with us their biggest lessons from their earliest days.

SHE LEARNED...

Your first huge argument may be over something as dumb as a towel left on the floor.

A towel left on the floor—multiple times—after reminding your spouse to please not leave wet towels on the floor—multiple times—does not mean you have failed. You've simply arrived at your first lesson.

It's hard to remember what your vows were all about after having said them only once, like that one time, on your wedding day.

After a day of awkwardness, an argument, annoyances, or boredom (trust me, at least one of these will happen on the honeymoon), telling the one I love, "I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad," reminded me that our recent wedding wasn't just a big party, but the start of a life in which I promised to love my husband in spite of all the unexpected and less-than-desirable realizations that inevitably come with marriage. Repeating our vows to each other every night is a great reminder of what our grand marriage adventure really means, day-in, day-out.

What's mine is yours and what's yours is mine.

With some obvious exceptions (e.g., toothbrushes and other personal items), everything is now "ours": the house, the refrigerator, the pillows, the toilet, the calendar, our futures. This is sharing on a whole new level.

When it comes to parenthood, know if the light is red, green, or yellow.

Let's just say our first daughter was our favorite honeymoon souvenir. And for the record, going into our marriage, we both agreed the light would be green—we just didn't know how fast we'd get there.

Marriage doesn't make you immune from the past coming to haunt you.

Everything we struggled with while dating and during our engagement (e.g., trust issues, tempers, unhealthy eating, lateness) didn't automatically disappear or get better just because we got married. We still had to work on it!

HE LEARNED...

It's not sex on demand.

Isn't that common sense, you might ask? Nope.

Marriage is when the real work begins.

The work wasn't planning the wedding. Where is the marriage planner when you need her?

You can't just turn marriage off.

Want to leave on a spontaneous road trip? How about a late night with your friends without a word when you don't feel like being with your spouse? Oh, wait. You promised, "Until death do us part," not "Until I feel like it."

Your wife is now the most important woman in your life. Not your mother.

Now instead of, "Let me ask my mom," it should be, "Let me ask my wife."

Don't ever ask her, "Is this good enough?"

If you feel like you have to ask her that question, then it isn't good enough. Your wife will always deserve more than "good enough," so give her your best every time, no questions needed.