23 July 2020, by Rachelyn Gordon
Our one-year wedding anniversary is in a few weeks’ time. Time has really flown by and I have not had the mental space to sit down and take stock of how…well… our marriage is going.
There have been the occasional barks…and bites (haha), but I always say a marriage/relationship without any is more worrying. So hurray for us!
Why reflect on the year then?
For me, it comes down to our wedding vows. Our vow to each other was to create an exciting and colourful life together. And I suppose subconsciously, I know that this year has not quite been all that exciting nor colourful. Partly due to the pandemic that has caused chaos worldwide and to everyone’s plans. For us, we’ve cancelled planned trips and gatherings.
Besides blaming the pandemic, N and I have to also take responsibility…
We’ve both been extremely busy at work. N has been involved in several high-stake events that have run consecutively. And I…well, I teach for a living and let’s just say that teaching in the middle of a pandemic is akin to juggling 3 fireballs. Drop any and you’ll get burnt!
In fact, when we were given the opportunity to work from home, N and I initially thought that we would get to spend more quality time together. Unfortunately, we were amazed at how many hours could easily fly by with us not interacting with each other. This was largely due to our work from home arrangements. I taught in the study room and N got on conference calls after conference calls in the living room. We had to conscientiously remind ourselves to have lunch together. I even dare say we worked more when working from home!
I don’t want to leave you with the impression that N and I are married to our jobs. We quite dislike being called workaholics and if we had it our way, our laptops would be in sleep mode by 6 pm and our phones would not be vibrating throughout the night.
That said, we are in jobs that we enjoy doing very much. N and I have purpose and meaning in our days because of our jobs. We have both seen the other light up when speaking about our respective projects. So that puts the ball of work-life balance right back in our court.
As I was reflecting on this, I wondered if other newlywedded couples faced the same obstacle. Maybe it was just that N and I had terrible prioritising skills? So I asked some married friends and lo and behold…received the answer that EVERYONE FELT THE SAME.
One friend even joked, “What is a balance other than it being a kitchen tool?” Her response made me laugh but it also brought me some relief. We were not “wasting” our marriage and that…WE WERE NOT ALONE! Other couples are struggling too!
So, no, unfortunately, I am not going to end this post with definitive actions that N and I are going to take, and weirdly, that is comforting. I know I have reflected, sought feedback from other couples and I know we need to do better. We will certainly make a concerted effort towards doing better, but we also have the time to do it in baby steps.
After all, we have another few decades together. The balance will come with trial and error – I am confident of it. For now, I take comfort in knowing that despite the crazy ride our first year of marriage has been, we have had some wonderful memories.
Here are my top five:
(1) Cooking together
(2) Watching movies together
(3) Rearranging/decorating our home
(4) Recreating memes
(5) Unglamorous picture challenge
We created a challenge to see who is able to take the most unflattering pictures of the other. Pretty exciting to us!
Do share moments or even the activities you do as a couple to keep your marriage exciting!