Hey sweet friends!

I’m so excited to be writing to you today for the first time as the marriage columnist for Radiant Magazine!  A few things about me, my name is Meredith, I’m a Nashville native and think of myself as pretty lucky to have been born in my favorite city.  I’m a nurse by day and writer by night.  I work in the emergency department at the trauma center in Nashville and can’t get enough of it.  I love what I get to wake up and do every day whether it’s writing or nursing.
When I was sixteen, I fell hard for this cute boy on the football team.  He asked me to prom that year and six years later he asked me to marry him!  I’ve been married to Justin, the absolute love of my life, for three years now and I can surely say that whether in times of unspeakable joy or deep pain, it gets sweeter with each passing day.
I’m convinced that marriage is one of the greatest blessings of this life and the grace of life.  Marriage relationships are like none other on this earth and with all their beauty and joy also comes dark seasons to navigate together.  I’m all for talking about it, the amazing parts about marriage as well as the nitty-gritty kind of stuff.  I love to write about real life marriage, not Instagram marriage, and that’s what you’ll find in this column.  I can’t wait to hear your stories of the redeeming work that love does, especially in marriage!
Without further ado, enjoy!
The Subtle Seamlessness in Marriage

 

This past week we had one of those weird weeks where my husband and I worked opposite schedules.  He was working day shift, I was working night shift, so we would see each other in passing in the mornings and evenings as we reported off in the emergency department.  We’ve always said that those weeks, in a sense, feel like the other is out of town because when you work 12-hour shifts, there’s no overlap of being home at the same time.  When he gets to work, I leave to go home, and when I get to work, he leaves to go home; It’s strange.

Friday evening finally rolled around, and I felt an anticipation, an excitement, that kept me watching the clock.  It was that Friday sort of feeling but also a little more.  When 7:30 pm finally rolled around, and Justin got off work, we met up at a local brewery in our area of town that we are so not cool and so not hipster enough to frequent, but they have great local craft brews, so it’s hard to pass that up.  We sat across the table from one another on wooden stools, leaning in a little closer to one another spilling over with happiness just to be together.

He said ‘Mer, it’s only been 48 hours since we’ve really seen each other and hung out but I feel like it’s been so long and that we have a lot to catch up about!  I’ve missed you these last few days!’  I just laughed because it sounded sort of silly but I felt the exact same way.  We caught up and talked about each others days, sipping our cold brews, laughing and enjoying our time together that Friday night.

It occurred to me as I crawled into bed that night, thinking back on our time together and conversation that evening, that our marriage feels different these days.  After being married for three years, it feels a little more seamless than it used to.  It was never bad by any means in our earlier days; it didn’t even noticeably feel strange or weird then, but these days we feel a little more in sync with one another, in step, in tune.

We seem to have this wildly delusional idea that when we finally find our match, marriage will be this perpetual state of seamless living and interactions with one another where we will ‘get’ each other all, or at least most, of the time.  In some ways this is true, the person you marry I believe in every way is ‘your person’ but it’s also worth considering that you’ve lived some twenty-odd years, thirty-odd years, or maybe even more, solo and then suddenly with some rings and vows you begin to weave your life in with another’s and become one.  So when you look at it like that, it’s actually pretty weird and very abnormal in some ways, which is why we may feel that strange pull once we are married.

My husband and I dated for six years before we got married and we would’ve said that we knew each other really well and had experienced a good bit of life and growing up together prior to tying the knot.  But marriage was an entirely different ball game we found.

 

It makes sense as I look back to the earlier days of our marriage now, how two individual lives growing together takes time.  The difference I feel is palpable these days.  That feeling of being in step with one another is something that I feel a little more with each day that passes.  It’s part of what comes from two lives being continually knit together, day by day, step by step, and moment by moment.  It’s quite beautiful when you notice the change that’s happened subtly over the years.  It makes you cherish the moments, no matter how mundane they may seem or feel, because they are continually knitting your hearts together in such a beautiful way that is difficult to accurately describe with words.