this thing called marriage.

>> 1.28.2012

There have been a lot of posts lately talking about whether or not marriage is hard.

I think this was all spurned by the Driscoll's new book that came out recently, and even though I haven't read said book, I've read the posts around it.

To be honest, I was a little surprised. Most of the posts I've read have all been talking about how this thing called marriage is not hard, and the surprising ease that they found during their first year together. And while I don't discount this at all, I feel like it's not necessarily fair to those of us that did have a hard time.

Because let's be honest here (since that's what I do).

My first year of marriage was probably one of the hardest things I've ever faced.


 it was also one of the best.

And here's the thing. I got married at the ripe old age of nineteen, halfway through my second year of Bible college. When I got back to campus in the fall after we got married, I was surrounded by couples who had tied the knot that summer as well.
And that whole semester, I spent a good chunk of time worrying that we had made a mistake, because look at everyone else, they're so happy and all they talk about is how happy they are and how great marriage is, and gosh, we sure do have a lot of problems compared to everyone else...

And I just wish I had known that it was okay to wonder if we had made a mistake.
It was okay to feel like I hated this life, and to wish that I could just go back home and not do this anymore.

The problem is that no one warned me that it was going to be this hard, and that my husband and I would get in big fights late at night, and that I would cry and he would get angry, because we are imperfect, sinful people. No one wanted to talk about how marriage is like God holding up a big mirror that shows all of the bad parts of you and says, "Well kid, take a look. This is the truth, and there are parts of it that are pretty ugly." No one wanted to tell me just how selfish I was, and how I was going to have to learn how to say, "I'm sorry" and mean it even when I didn't want to.

So, I'm talking about it.
My first year of marriage was incredibly difficult, but it was also incredibly wonderful. There were moments that could have been pulled out of your favorite romantic movie, and moments that I will cherish for the rest of my life. But it was hard. And that's okay.
Because it's even better now, and I get to realize that and see how far we've come. And this is all okay with me. God has used my marriage like a refining fire, and even though I am far from done, I am proud to say that I have made progress.

And even though I sometimes get jealous of those people that have had a really easy time in their marriage, God is making me see that every relationship is different, and this just happens to be ours. Comparison is the kiss of death, it's the cause of all discontent, and it can be fatal to your marriage.

To my husband, thank you for loving me despite all of the roadblocks and difficulties we've faced. Thank you for forgiving me thousands of times, and showing me what sacrificial love looks like. Thank you for being my best friend, and making me laugh like no one else can.
I respect you so much, and I am so proud to call you my husband, and the father of my son.

To everyone else, I hope you won't judge too harshly.
And if someone else resonates with this, I hope you will realize that it's okay for something to be hard. That doesn't make it wrong, and it doesn't mean that you've made a mistake. It just means that it's going to take some work, but it's going to be worth it.



>> 1.27.2012

It's sunny but cold today, and I'm already on my third cup of (decaf) tea.
Jameson's still napping and I've finished working for the day.
We're almost out of milk and I'm trying to decide whether or not to rinse that load of laundry again.

I miss writing beautiful things.

I was completely content today, right here in this tiny town with it's lack of social activities and my inability to drive a car.
Jameson and I went out to a baby-friendly cafe, and I ate cake and drank coffee, while he sat in a highchair and gummed a baby rice cake. I made him laugh and he hugged me with his sticky fingers, and then a friend of ours coincidentally popped in and we ended up talking for an hour while she ate lunch with her two-year old, and the little bean-baby that is growing in her belly.

On the walk home, I looked at the sky and breathed in clean air, and reveled in the fact that I was okay, we were happy, and that I didn't have a burning desire to be anywhere else at that moment.

I don't know what this means.
Maybe it doesn't mean anything, or maybe it means everything.

Either way, it was nice.

Here's what life looks like lately. (And here's a promise to start working on photography again. Cause I need to.)

Hanging out at Uncle Jordan and Aunt Brandi's apartment in Dallas.

Oatmeal wasn't his favorite...

Gong Xi Fai Cai! (Or, Happy Chinese New Year!)

Double crowns. This may pose problems in the future.

Sesame Street. He loves it.

The gluten-intolerant's version of a ham sandwich.


the return.

>> 1.17.2012

Ah, England. We meet again.

We've been "home" for almost a week now, and I am happy to report that we are pretty much settled back in and the jetlag is nearly out of our system. There are a million and one things that I need to work/think/pray through after our trip to America, and I am sure that they'll come out on here in time.

We had an amazing visit with so many amazing people, and I am just now processing how blessed I am, and how much support I have, even when I feel like I am in a very lonely place. It's interesting to see how God has given me the most incredible friends and family, and how I have not been able to find anyone similar in any of the places I've been. Seriously, I have been given the cream of the crop, and I am so happy about it.

Jameson was such a trooper during the whole trip--even the 10 hour plane rides where he had an ear infection and a cold. He was a rockstar baby, and people were constantly telling us, "Your baby is so well-behaved, and he is SO beautiful!" We would just smile and say thank you, but inside I was going, "I know, right? I got the best one."

He loved, loved, loved meeting his family in America, including 7 new grandparents (that's right folks, 7. We churn 'em out young in my family. Haha) including his great-great-grandma and 2 new aunts.

He also got to meet his godparents (outside of the womb), and the church family that has been loving on him and praying for him since he was the size of a poppyseed inside of my belly.

We had a dedication ceremony at church that was perfect, and exactly what Hubs and I wanted.

We got to celebrate my 23rd birthday at Spaghetti Factory, where I gorged myself on gluten-free pasta and wine, and laughed hysterically with my family.

Christmas was wonderful, and Jameson was spoiled beyond belief. We literally had to bring an extra suitcase back with us, that's how much stuff we picked up.

I put on at least five pounds from gorging myself with Mexican food, In-N-Out, Chick-fil-a, Starbucks, Panda Express, and so many others that when I think about them I just get hungry.

It was wonderful, and the perfect five weeks, and we didn't take nearly enough pictures (but I'll try to start taking more since I got a CAMERA PURSE for Christmas from my amazing husband!!!).

I am sad to be back here, but I am also glad to be in my own space, working towards a new goal of going home to the States for good. For now, I am trying to soak up the time I have here, because I know that there will be things I'll miss when I leave.

Hopefully, more regular posting will start to occur, thanks the the new schedule that I have us on. We'll see how it goes.

Love, love.


so this is the new year.

>> 1.01.2012


I can't believe that it's here.
2011 has been a year of so many ups and downs, so many incredible things happened (including the birth of my son), for the good and the bad.

To be honest, I haven't spent much time reflecting on it all, simply because I am trying to soak up as much time with my family as I possibly can. We've been in Utah for nearly 3 & 1/2 weeks now, and are leaving on Wednesday, and...I really just want to be here.
Laughing with my sisters, 
and drinking (decaf) coffee with my parents, 
and watching my son get to know the American side of his family.

There will be posts with pictures to come (although, I've done a bad job of taking them. Again, I've just tried to be here with everyone, and not spend all my time behind a camera), and I'm sure the reflection will begin.

For now, I've decided that this year is going to be about taking better care of myself, so that I can take better care of my family. This includes all aspects: physical, emotional, and spiritual. 
I want to be a better woman for the Lord, a better wife, and a better mom.

So, 2012, here's to you. Let's see if we can't live it up, right?

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