With the man of my dreams in front of me and my sisters behind, Nick and I vowed forever to each other at 21 and 22 years old. Little did I know that the arrangement of my wedding party would represent our marriage in the coming years.
Let me introduce the dearest circle of women and my support team: two older sisters, both mothers and wives journeying before me, and my younger sister, now wrapping up her college career. We’re in different stages of life and it seems there’s always something to discuss when we’re together. Thus, our sacred and protected Monday night gathering was formed.
Known simply as GN, (girls’ night), the setting is a cozy living room, a lit candle, a lovely bouquet of flowers and some form of sweet, chocolatey goodness. The beauty of these little details speak to our souls each week. It’s an evening of painting nails, skimming magazines, and honest to goodness girl talk. It is not a place to bash or criticize our husbands or other relationships, but a safe haven to bring up concerns, frustrations and joys. It’s a place to feel understood.
But why all this talk of girls’ night and sisterhood on a blog devoted to marriage and the relationships between men and women? The simple answer is that girls’ night has strengthened our marriage. Let me give two examples.
First, girls’ night has taught me that Nick is not and should not be my best girlfriend. (Bless his heart, he tries to care about what shoes go with what shirt.) This seems straightforward, but after being consistently disappointed that he “just didn’t understand me”, the realization that his role isn’t to be my chatty gal pal has been liberating for us. So this bears repeating, ladies: your husband is not a woman. He is not wired the same way as you, and that’s okay. As simple as this may sound, I am still reminding myself of this weekly, daily...
Second, with a baby on the way, having the chance to talk with women who’ve been there before has soothed many of my concerns about pregnancy, childbirth, and other female problems. (The guys are now tuning out. See my first point?) Nick is an amazing husband who has encouraged me each step of the way and done his best to calm the worries that arise, but he can’t fully understand or relate to the ups and downs of pregnancy. He hasn’t experienced the anxiety or even the excitement of feeling the baby every day. And again, that’s okay. The girls, on the other hand, have been right where I am, and have felt the same crazed emotions. Women simply don’t mind delving into the fabulous details of their own personal tale. And the best part is that our conversations typically end up in knee-slapping, tears rolling, silent laughter. The importance of girl’s nights and having a trusted group of women is indescribable.
When I asked Nick to summarize what girl’s night has meant for our marriage he said, “Grounding. In that, what we have questions about are most of the time experiences that your sisters have dealt with before and have insight on. And just examples of excellent parenting.”
Girls’ night has showed me that we are not alone. Our marriage is not abnormal. We’re young and we are going to struggle while we grow up together, learn together and parent together. Girls’ night reminds me that Nick and I are on the same team--we are for each other. Always for each other.Media: