Today marks the 365th day we have been blissfully married. It is hard to believe as it feels like yesterday we were standing on top of the mountains in the Carolinas saying “I do.” We have had the most amazing first year I think any married couple could request.
Two days before we exchanged nuptials I flew home from Dubai. We had planned to elope and best I could the schedule for work was squashed to fit that. After 16 hours in the air we switched the suitcases and drove South. The winery was beautiful and the little moment that we shared was just for us. We couldn’t have asked for anything more perfect for us as we are loners in this great big world. Right after we were married I jumped back on a plane for the United Arab Emirates.
Homebase has been Abu Dhabi as we traveled the globe and I think that is the perfect part of all this. My Father once told me that the best thing a newly married couple can do is leave family after tying the knot. We unexpectedly took this to the extreme visiting 20+ countries for work and pleasure. While we had no honeymoon, we became citizens of the world. Before we were brought together, Alicia had only seen small portions of the United States. I took such joy in watching her experience the things that seemed normal to me. I, together with her, saw these places anew for the first time.
What I have learned from being married for a year:
- Share everything and be open. You need to be able to have honest conversations about hopes, desires, wants, and fears. This extends to the technology world also. There is no email or Facebook account we can’t both access. This along with sharing our time together means that there is an open forum.
- Talk more. When we do argue it is because I get quiet and she wants to talk. Being 29 when we were married I had my way of doing things and my own ways to fix things. This is a learning process in shifting the tool set to include her.
- Be silly.
- Workout Together! Becoming healthy together (especially while clocking in 100000+ Km of travel a year) is a wonderful thing to keep you baselined.
- Have hobbies. This is a little tough as we usually live in hotel rooms, but even then she knows to let me play a marathon match of CivV every so often and she spends a few hours at the pool reading. Being married doesn’t mean being constantly joined in the same room.
- Mein Haus ist dein Haus plain and simple.
- I usually handle all things dealing with the money, but I always make it a point to key her into the nuances of the finances. Sometimes it seems out-of-place; “Baby come look at the details on the emergency fund in relation to our investments this quarter,” but I feel more secure knowing she knows we are good.
- Family and Friends are a world away (sometimes literally and sometimes emotionally), but my wife is 4 meters away. Draw together in the face of anything the world tosses your way and learn to draw on the other person for strength.
- Have lots of sexy time
- Learn the value of a good bottle of wine and dinner to relax together
If I had to look back and point out my favourite moments this year other than obviously getting married…
- Becoming Lord and Lady Schmidt
- Learning my wife cannot dance
- Being able to speak German together in public places. It allows for such comments as “Scheiße aussehen. Das Mädchen Hintern ist groß!” with no worries on who is listening in most places :)
- Having Christmas in our little apartment in Abu Dhabi
- Seeing a shark in the Maldives and freaking out
- Having Turkey in Turkey on Thanksgiving
- Showing her my home town of Bitburg and hanging out in Trier
- Becoming yuppies together
- Taking pictures next to all the border crossings as we go places