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Our 8th anniversary is coming up on the 5th

He had me looking back at how different we looked back when I was 22 and he was 19 and we first met.

8 years and 3 kids, countless medical issues, stress and it’s been a lot of fun as well.

How both of us looked when we met vs now

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I finally figured out the secret to a clean house

Lock the husband and kids out. Maybe all of us can go live somewhere else and just sleep on the beds.

I think that’s the only way I’ll keep my house clean for now…

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How I met my husband (almost 8 years ago)

I was out with two of my friends one night doing Karaoke at a local bar. Two of us went outside and were walking down the street. I saw an attractive guy with long hair walking down the street who was wearing an As I Lay Dying jacket. I had recently bought one of their CDs and found I really liked their music (I used to buy music based on cover design and found a lot of bands I liked from doing that). I had a decent buzz going on so I yelled across the street “Hey! I like your jacket” and my friend noticed he didn’t turn around- she yelled “Hey, dude or chick- she likes your jacket”  and we walked on.

The guy saw me (I didn’t see, he later told me) and turned around, walked back to the bar I was in to “see if he could bum a cigarette.”

While I was back in the bar, I glanced out and saw him outside so I excused myself and went outside. We started talking and hit it off immediately. He was only 19 so he couldn’t go in the bar (I had just turned 22) so I stayed outside talking to him.

My friends and I left and we invited him to go out and get a hotel with us and he accepted. I figured it would be a one night stand but I gave him my number (didn’t give my number to guys back then) and he called me. We talked on Mysoace all night the next night and he walked from his house to my work the day after that. We both were living with our parents (I was still detoxing and working on getting clean and he was just a teen) but we wanted to be together so we started staying with friends for a while.

One night, we were discussing the concept of marriage and he proposed- it was only 2 1/2 weeks in but something told me to say yes. We were accused of mocking marriage and all that but my parents accepted it, at least. 2 1/2 months later, we were staying with his parents while he was trying to find a job and we were looking for a decent apartment. We decided to elope shortly after so we headed to the courthouse with a friend and applied. We told his parents (who tried to talk him out of it) and my parents who just wanted to be there to see their only daughter get married so we arranged the time with them and they met us at the courthouse. His friend’s car broke down on the way so we had to walk (in the August heat) and ended up being an hour late. We lucked out that my parents were witnesses they were able to stall the judge so we didn’t lose our place.

We were married on August 5, 2010. About a month later, we finally found an apartment and were able to quit staying with people and move in to the house we lived in until last year.

Our story may make me look bad but I’m 30 now, I quit drinking (when we met I did have a drinking problem) and he was never a drinker- it helped that he couldn’t join me at bars for 1 year. I actually haven’t been to a bar outside of watching a couple concerts since that night.

Like I said, I’m 30 now, he’s 27, we’ve had 3 kids, we both have been back to school and neither of us are impulsive like we used to be. We have outlasted a lot of couples we know who actually waited years to marry. My husband and I both were young and impulsive but we both were raised by couples who were on their first marriages, had been married for a long time and we both went into the marriage knowing it wasn’t easy. We knew it was the most serious commitment, you can’t just walk away and it would take a lot of work.

It wasn’t, isn’t and won’t be an easy ride- but so far, eight years in, neither of us have any regrets.We have been through so much together and it has made us stronger.

I always held the belief that when you meet someone, you will know. It won’t take years to decide and if you have been together years with no interest in marrying that one person (unless you’re just not interested in marriage), there is a reason something is holding you back. I don’t believe people should rush in (it worked for us, but doesn’t work for everyone) but I also don’t believe you should date for years then just get married “just because” or because it “is the right thing to do.” Love is an emotion and shouldn’t be something you have to justify (I also am one of the people who will tell a woman who’s on the fence about having kids to wait since it’s a lifetime commitment)

If it doesn’t feel right, don’t do it. Love isn’t’ logical and if you’re looking for logic it will fail. I personally only believe in divorce in cases of the three As- abuse, addiction and adultery. Same with my husband. There are things that should be discussed beforehand- religious beliefs, kids, how many kids you want, how soon you want them, jobs/goals for career or education and any other major life choices.

Personally, I love that we got married young. I spend almost all of my 20s with him and in 2 years, he will have spent all of his 20s with me. We both have changed a lot and it’s like we’ve grown together, but as we’ve gotten older we’ve gown more similar so that has helped us. We also didn’t go in thinking it would all be fun and games, or temporary. Neither of us are traditional, but we hold those traditional beliefs about marriage.

 

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Day 1- 21 Days of Happiness Challenge

Your task today is to start a gratitude journal.

You don’t have to have an actual, physical journal to start (although we all love a good excuse to pick up a fresh, empty notebook, don’t we?). It can be public or private, typed up or written down. You can use sticky notes and create an entire wall of things to be thankful for, or even share your thoughts on Facebook and encourage your friends to join you in the Happiness Challenge.

However you choose to participate, begin by writing down three things you are thankful for. 

  • Be as specific as possible,
  • don’t list the same thing twice,
  • and try not to take yourself too seriously!

And of course, if you enjoy and find benefit in this or any task from the challenge, consider choosing that as an ongoing habit in your life.

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1. I am thankful for my two beautiful daughters and my angel. I’m thankful I get to wake up to those two cute little faces and that I’m getting to watch them go from babies through their lives to developing their own interests, talents and personalities.

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2. I couldn’t be half the person I am right now without my husband. When I’m feeling too tired or am in too much pain, he’s pulling my half of the weight- and not complaining (much lol)

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3. My parents- They also help so much, especially while I’m getting stabilized on my thyroid meds and am working towards gaining as much of my health back. My mom is also a great person to go to when I need a reality check and she reads up on so much and helps. She also is taken seriously by specialists and teachers- which I’m still, I guess, too young looking to have happen. If I take her with me, they take me more seriously and will talk more than when I’m alone.

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I never thought I’d be the type to let myself go after a marriage and these past 2 years (last year and this year) I’m getting myself back.

I have been with my husband almost 8 years now. Before he and I met, when I was younger, it would take me over an hour just to leave my house. My hair, make up, clothes and everything had to be perfect. After we had our first baby, I had an extra 60lbs (went from 125 to 198 at the end of my first- complicated- pregnancy) and I started stress eating (before that, if I was stressed, I couldn’t eat). I managed to lose 10lbs down to 180 but stuck. I did workouts sporadically but the stress turned to fatigue and even laziness.

With my second pregnancy (the one we lost) my weight stayed the same after the baby was born and I was too depressed to really work on it.

By the time I had my third, I gained up to 220- higher than I ever weighed and was a size 18. This time, I was more active but my thyroid went into hyper due to the toxic cyst and I lost 30lbs in the first 6 weeks and another 20 recently. Now that I’m down to about 170 and a size 14/16 I’m gaining the motivation to continue.

After I had my first baby, I continued with my hair, make up and skin routine but over time, lost it.

In the past few months, I’m working on changing myself. I realized a while back I let myself go so now I’m working on undoing the damage before it becomes harder.

My daily skin routine now involves pre cleanse and cleansing, sometimes exfoliating (not every day- usually 3 times a week to every other day), spraying my face with either rose water or Dermalogica’s Multi-Active toner, moisturizer, then I’ll put on a mask 1-2 times a week. That’s my evening before bedtime routine. My morning routine is the same but after the moisturizer, I’ll put my make up on. That full routine can keep my eczema from acting up too bad. I have found that to keep it down, exfoliating and moisturizing is key.

I’ve studied skin care professionally (I’m a licensed skin therapist) so keeping my skin next to perfect is key. Luckily for me, when my eczema breaks out, it’s mostly still skin colored but the itching does me in. I still get compliments on my skin on a daily basis- I get rid of zits immediately, don’t have black heads and you would have to look at my skin under a magnifying glass to see my pores- my skin has been my pride and thanks to that, I still look as young as I did when I met my husband. I’m heavier now, but I’m also working on losing that (I did make it from 130 to 220, I’m back down to 170 and working on losing the last 40lbs if possible). I’m down 50lbs from 220 to 170 from two years ago (hit my peak weight at the very end of my last pregnancy- but there will be no more pregnancies so I can focus on losing the last bit)

I’m also looking at what types of workouts are best for people with Osteo arthritis and Ehler Danlos Syndrome to try to get my body toned back up.

I’ve been working on trying to get back to how I was in college. Back then, I was active and felt great. I also looked better. I’m not sure how to handle my thinning and really dry hair (the wrong shampoos grease my hair up and make it look wet, when it dries it dries like straw. It’s hard having greasy skin in that one area of my body but then having dry hair. The thyroid issues don’t help at all.)
The selected image is what I looked like in October. I’m hoping to get back to a slightly older version of what I looked like when I met my husband. I’m not trying to look like a teen again (or very young adult) since I’ll be 30 this week, I just want to be about the same size, weight and to feel good again.

The first picture was taken right before my husband and I met (same week)

The one with the hat was shortly after we got together, before I got pregnant and the third was our first Christmas with our new baby (she was 9 months old)