after 10 years of marriage, here are 10 things I wish i knew before saying 'I do'

after 10 years of marriage, here are 10 things I wish i knew before saying 'I do'

A tool kit for your nuptials.

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Marriage is one of the oldest institutions, if not the oldest recorded institutions out there. It dates all the way back to Adam and Eve, which predates the coming of Christ and the formation of the church.

But less and less people are choosing to opt into this institution. Reports do show good news, however, that the divorce rates have stayed stagnant teetering ≈800K (3.2/1000). Marriage when done right can be the most beautiful union that exists because you build and grow a life together, with shared, dreams, values and even children (should you wish together).

But here are 10 things that every person should know before entering into the unity/sanctity of marriage:

1. The race is not for the swift

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I know this is probably happening less and less but societal pressures have historically told women, you have to be married by your mid twenties or no one will want you when you are older. There will be newer models i.e. younger females in their twenties that will be more attractive to the men of your age. And while they age too, they are more desirable than you. It's this kind of chauvinistic crap that has had women rush into incompatible marriages that have for some devastating consequences for years to come.

2. You can't change him (or her)

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Why do we always think as women, he'll change for me. He is a horrible father but he will be a great father to "my kids". He never pays his bills on time but he will pay my bills. He cheated on all his past girlfriends but he won't cheat on me because I am "special". Ladies, and in some cases gents, when they show you their real selves, believe them the first time.

3. Know thyself

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As one ages, you really start to know yourself. What you will and will not tolerate. I believe that this is the best time to get married when you really know yourself.

4. Grow together

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But if you do get married young like me, you have to be willing to grown and change together. Get to know each other anew with each new phase of your lives.

5. Be flexible

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When you are joined in matrimony, you win together. You can't just be concerned about your win. If one wins, the other loses, you have to learn to compromise and be flexible without losing yourself. It's a fine balance.

6. Your wedding day is not for you

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My sister once told me, my wedding wasn't for me. I thought what. It's for your guest to enjoy. You hardly remember the day. It can be so stressful. So just put yourself in the frame of mind that you are just here to serve others, and you will be just fine.

7. The wedding day is just one day

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In the same token, it is just one day. You can spend thousands, hundreds of thousands for the day and forget about the there and after. So spend your money, your time and your plans wisely. Its one day out of the rest of your lives together.

8. Pray together

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I can not say this enough. It's important to share the same value system and believe in the same or very similar things at its core value so pray together, pray together, pray together.

9. Have shared visions and goal

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Have a shared vision or goal for you marriage. And as you grown and change together make sure you update it from the get go.

10. Start as you mean to go on.

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Be a united front. Make decisions together and don't undermine your spouse by making decisions without their input. You should aim to do this before you even get married.


The most important thing is that marriage shouldn't be taken lightly. When you choose to enter into it, you should go in with the mentality "till death do us part" not till divorce do us part.

Cover Image Credit:

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34 Things I Should Have Brought To College At The Start Of Freshman Year, But Didn't

To the incoming freshman from the rising senior.
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Coming from a rising senior at the University of Dayton who has lived in an over-sized double dorm room, to a suite-style quad dorm room, to a house with virtually no storage space sharing an octagon-shaped single room (and single closet)... These are the random little things no one thinks to bring to college or put on these lists, but they will make your life on campus a million times better. I ended up buying these items long after I started college, and they were a big help. Don't make the same mistakes I did.

1. Shoe organizer

These are great for various items such as toiletries, snacks, and, of course, shoes.

2. Under-the-bed storage bins

During college, most of my storage has been under my bed, so this is a must.

3. Photos

To remember the happy times with your friends and family. Add to your collection over your college years.

4. String lights

Just to add a little something extra to your space. The dim light is totally relaxing.

5. Makeup wipes

For when you're too tired after going out to actually wash your face.

6. Extra sheets and towels

Trust me, you're not going to want to wash your sheets and towels right away so you can use them immediately. Bring back-ups.

7. Tide pods

These are awesome. Plus they smell heavenly.

8. Drunk dorm/microwaveable snacks

For when you come back after going out and the dining hall has already closed. Ordering Domino's or Jimmy John's night after night is NOT a cost-effective option.

9. Gatorade

For when you're too dead in the morning to walk down and get one from the dining hall.

10. Keurig and coffee

Just in case the dining hall runs out of coffee during finals week. Believe me, it can happen.

11. Chip clips

You will accumulate many of these from free vendors and events on campus, but somehow, they are no where to be found when you need one.

12. Paper towels / Clorox wipes

You can never have enough.

13. Rain boots

So you'll be able to make it to class on those rainy days without having to sit in soaking wet socks and shoes for 50 minutes (yikes). And you can jump in all the puddles you wish.

14. Alarm clock

If you're like me and could sleep the whole day if you didn't have an alarm, your phone alarm just doesn't cut it sometimes.

15. Back study pillow

Even if you don't think you will use it, you will end up wanting it.

16. Command strips

These are the only things that will stick to most dorm room walls.

17. Rug

Especially if your room has a cold tile floor instead of carpet.

18. Air mattress or sleeping bag

For your friends visiting you on campus, or if you ever go on a trip.

19. Disposable dishes

At least while you live in a dorm with a community sink.

20. Red solo cups

Because you don't want your morning-after milk or apple juice to taste like last night's $8 vodka.

21. Costumes/holiday wear

This is something I totally didn't even think about when I first came to school. Now I have an entire bin JUST for costumes and holiday decor.

22. Crazy daydrink clothes

If you have a few jerseys, you're set. If not, take a trip to the local goodwill with your squad and pick up a few things. The crazier, the better.

23. Towel wrap

If you're like me and just like to chill in your towel after you shower ( and a robe is too hot for you), these are a must. And they're super cute.

24. Wristlet/clutch/small purse

You won't want to lug around a large tote while you're out with friends or doing daily activities.

25. Comfortable heels

Don't let this be you!!!! I've been there, and nothing will ruin your night of dancing at the club like shoes that give you blisters and disable your walking by the end of the night.

26. Business casual and business professional clothes

And make sure you know the difference and when each is appropriate.

27. Water bottle

In college, your water bottle is your best friend. You never go anywhere without it, and it actually helps you to drink the amount of water you're supposed to drink each day (maybe).

28. Blender

If you're a fan of smoothies (or frozen margaritas) and want to make them at home for less.

29. Flashcards

Flashcards are a great way to study. If they're not for you, buy them anyway just in case you want to try them out. Or if anyone on your floor is desperate for them, they will be eternally grateful.

30. Mini fridge

When you're sharing a fridge with 3+ other people, things can get pretty tight. I recommend buying this with your roommates so you can share the extra space.

31. Calculator

Just in case you change your major and have to take math again (like me).

32. Thermometer

So you can know for sure whether or not you have a fever.

33. Drying rack

Because you're actually not supposed to put everything in the dryer, who knew?

34. Rubbing alcohol

Works wonders for getting those impossible Thursday night Xs off before your Friday 9 a.m.

These things have helped me make it through three years of college, especially freshman year. Hopefully, I have helped you prepare for your college years somehow. Good luck and have fun!!!

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Cover Image Credit: oregonstateuniversity / Flickr

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The Key To Self-Improvement: Moderation

Short-term solutions will never work for long-term problems.

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There's a famous quote that always seems to resurface in Instagram bios and yearbooks: "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference." It's a popular quote for a reason: it summarizes the idea of autonomy and accepting responsibility for our own shortcomings and successes quite nicely.

I think recognizing our own ability to shape our lives is vital to becoming successful adults—but that recognition can quickly become an obsession.

Of course, we all should aim to change the things we don't want to accept in our lives: but that is much easier said than done. It is so very, very easy to get wrapped up in the idea of self-improvement—and that can lead to some serious burn-out.

I have been trying for what feels like forever to find a lifestyle that helps me deal with various issues stemming from low self-esteem and anxiety.

I feel like I've tried it all: dietary adjustments, different exercises, journaling, social media breaks, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. None of it seemed to have the lasting impact I was looking for.

For the first time in my life, the lifestyle changes I'm attempting are working—and I think I know why.

One reason: moderation.

None of those lifestyle changes mentioned above is inherently bad or difficult. However, any time I have attempted to keep myself to a strict regiment of utilizing them, it's quickly fizzled out.

If I attempted to journal every night, for example, I would get upset with myself for missing one evening if I was exceptionally tired. Whenever I tried to abruptly change my eating habits, I would do really well for a couple of weeks before giving up altogether. The same would happen if I tried to run every day or give up social media.

I put so much pressure on myself to improve some area of my life quickly that every minor trip-up or break felt like a failure.

What I've been doing recently, however, is spacing out those changes. I'll run three or four times a week instead of every day. I try to eat healthy meals but I won't always skip dessert. I limit the time I spend online but I won't quit it altogether.

By giving myself some breathing room, it allows my body and mind time to adjust. Those lifestyle changes don't feel restrictive any more. By enjoying certain things occasionally instead of never, I don't find myself craving them.

Giving yourself an adjustment period is vital to making any major change last. Trust me on this one: short-term solutions will never fix a long-term problem.

While that quote is nice, I'd like to propose a minor addition to it: "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. Oh yeah—and the time to make it happen."

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