What’s your biggest piece of relationship advice?
Respect each other fully and whole heartedly. Before anyone else comes him, he is the person I love and respect the most and from that place, all else grows. We allow ourselves to change + evolve and our relationship evolves along with it. We never pull each other down or hold each other in the past, we are so fully present in who we are today and love the people we have grown to be more than we knew we could.
We prioritize each other because what we have is what we value most. We genuinely enjoy + cherish time together, it doesn’t have to be scheduled or a chore, we really just love being with one another. Even after 11 years, he is the one I choose to love with every piece of my soul and I cannot get enough of him.
When did you know he was the one?
Our first date. He took me to my freshman year homecoming dance and halfway through I walked off the dance floor and remember putting my hand behind my back and he grabbed it, we walked away from everyone else and everything felt right in the world. His hand in mine, it felt like home.
From that day forward we have been inseparable. Completely devoted to each other. We knew that we would be together our whole lives and I cannot explain how that felt to me. He has always been my rock and my person. I remember people making jokes about how we acted like we were married even when we were 14 and honestly, I never doubted it. I loved that we loved each other so fully, even if it was different than what everyone else was doing. Loving Teddy has been the most natural and incredible adventure I have ever been on.
Do you ever regret being together from such a young age on?
Never. Never. Never.
Here is why:
We have shared SO MUCH LIFE together. We have been together through it all. All of high school, college, all the career changes, every challenge that has come up in between. We have been through the most exciting moments together and the most devastating. We understand each other on the deepest level. My grandma passed away my freshman year of college and she loved Teddy so much. That is something that I do not take for granted. We know each others families so well and he was my rock through some really tough times, as have I for him.
I can truly say that nobody knows me more completely and truly like he does. He knows my fears, the things that I rock at and the things that tear me down. When I need advice or have to bounce something off of someone, it is always him who I trust the most. He knows me best and that is why I am thankful we have fully loved one another from 14 years old on. We have lived life together and I have loved every bit of it.
How has your relationship changed since high school?
It has gotten deeper. We have obviously been through more things as individuals such as deciding to go back to school, starting a business and walking away from that same business, all the hockey games, moving across the country now 3 times, etc. Also, another obvious one is we get to spend more time together.
We have gotten better, closer, much more in love. In high school there was so much going on around us with other people that now we get to really focus on us and our marriage.
Oh and we are not as dweeby looking. That’s a plus.
What has been the biggest struggle in your marriage/biggest compromise?
Hmmm, I would have to say so far it was when we decided we were moving from Texas to St. Louis. I understood why this was a good move because it is an incredible PhD program for Teddy but there was nothing that I was looking forward to here. So I was resistant and we had to really move through that together. We wanted to be on the same page when we moved but it took me a little bit longer to get there. I loved Texas and the amazing friends that we made there and I was not sure what STL would bring us.
Now, I see that it was essential. I loved Texas so much and miss all our friends so much but we have grown in a much different way since coming here. We have learned what living in a city is like and I am not as afraid of my shadow as I was before. I also found an amazing yoga community and really pushed myself into a more creative direction. We have gotten much closer too since moving here. We had to lean on each other more and were both way out of our element at first. It is so nice to know that he is my rock, it always makes these transitions easier.
And, we know that STL isn’t forever. It is until he is done with school and then we are moving on!
Was it easier or harder to go to different colleges?
I think we both recognized pretty quickly that it would be something that we had to sacrifice things in order to get time together and it was definitely trying at times. I remember when Teddy would leave to go back to school on Monday mornings and I wouldn’t see him for a week or 2 and I instantly missed him so much. There were times when I was so impatient to be done with school so that we could officially be together all the time but we also knew that it was good for us to be at different schools.
Being at different schools gave us a lot of time to make friendships with people individually. We had more time to commit to friends because if we would have been together at school we would have been inseparable and may have missed out on those college friends!
It was nice to grow as individuals during those times that are so transformational. Plus, when we lived together after college it was even more exciting!
How has your relationship changed since moving so much?
It has grown exponentially. It has been extremely hard to move and not know anyone and navigate new cities but we have changed so much for the better because of it. We lean in to each other each time and have learned so much about one another. We have seen that at the end of the day we really just need one another and we can overcome a lot of trying times. Each time we have moved there has been at least a month of anxiety and uncertainty that has followed and it is difficult to navigate. However, we really have expanded our world view and appreciate each adventure we have been on for their own specific reasons. I know we are not going to stop moving around so we only have more to learn. I think everyone should move outside their comfort zones and see the world a little bit before settling in one place.
We have driven to each place that we moved and have seen so much on those drives and it is something I would trade for anything, those shared moments with who matters the most. We will never stop exploring.
Here’s the thing, don’t make something work from a young age just to make it work. If it doesn’t feel right then move on. But if you find an amazing person who you couldn’t imagine not sharing all the moments that life is going to bring to you, then hold on tight and love without limits. Do not let other people tell you that you are too young or that it won’t last. If you both know in your heart that it’s forever, then just love each other each and every day and don’t worry about what people say. It will be worth every minute.
Things are not always picture perfect, but with Teddy and I we truly do love each other more than anything in the world.
The times he comes up behind me and wraps his arms around me when I’m making my coffee, puts on music and swings me around the kitchen, the long hikes with the pup, the times I wake up and he is watching me sleep and kisses me on the forehead, the way that he prioritizes us and is insanely loving and gentle always, they are the little moments that matter so much.
Those little moments, they are the big ones.