A Year of Marriage

Earlier this fall, I started writing a small overview of our first year as a married couple, something that I’m eager to continue doing with each passing year. I love the idea of looking back and reflecting on each year of marriage — the triumphs and growth, along with inevitable the challenges and obstacles.

YEAR ONE

Thinking back to our wedding day, I can hardly fathom that it’s been an entire year since we committed our lives to each other and embarked on this wild ride together. It seems like just yesterday that we were standing in the freezing cold, my dress muddied, hair wet, feeling the deepest joy I’d ever experienced in my life. I remember so vividly the unbridled happiness and love I felt in my heart towards Luke. Midway through our reception, we snuck out with our photographer into the pouring rain. Even though the sun had set and it was very cold, we held each other closely and looked into each other’s eyes. This man is my husband, I thought. I kept repeating it to myself, as though it wasn’t real, like it was all a dream. This was my absolute favourite memory of my wedding day.

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{Above} Some of our favourite shots on our wedding day were from when we dipped out of our reception for rainy (snowy!) photos at dusk. Photo Credit: Genevieve Renee Photographie

Our first year of marriage hasn’t been anything like I had imagined. It was a rollercoaster filled with joys and challenges. I was so accustomed to living life on my own terms — managing my home and finances, making my own decisions, that depending and relying on another person was so unfamiliar. I anticipated that this would happen when we got married, but it wasn’t until I was experiencing it first hand that I realized how inexperienced I was in letting go of control. Given that Luke and I had only been together for a year and a half before we got married, there were a lot of things that we began to learn about each other very quickly. We’ve learned that while marriage is truly wonderful, sharing and committing your life to another person takes a lot of work and communication (seems obvious, right?). It seems cliche but it couldn’t be more true. Marriage is work and it’s beautiful and it’s hard and it’s wonderful.

This was also the year that I made the exciting decision to follow my dreams and began pursuing photography. My personality is such that I never ‘dabble’ in anything, so I jumped in head first and immersed myself in every educational and creative outlet I could get my hands on. This was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made for myself, and I had a busy and amazing summer shooting, growing my portfolio and meeting some amazing creatives. I left my full-time job in October and took my photography full time. Having the support and encouragement from my husband was incredible, and it further reinforced that while Luke and I have our own passions and dreams that we want to accomplish and work towards, I always know that I want to do it all alongside each other, hand in hand.

Undoubtedly what I’m most grateful for after this first year is the time we’ve had to grow together as a new couple. I so cherish the freedom and bond we’ve grown to share in this time, and part of me isn’t ready for it to end. Having date night once a week, taking spontaneous Saturday afternoon naps, and impromptu weekend trips just the two of us are all things that I know will change someday. Being able to work through issues without added factors has been such a blessing, and something I’m not ready to give up yet. I know that when we eventually begin adding to our family, it will undeniably be the most incredible step together, but I feel like I need to savour these days just the two of us, as I know that they won’t last forever.

At the end of our first year as a married couple, we made the exciting decision to move further West to the Okanagan Valley. Luke began seeking out jobs earlier in June, and when an exciting opportunity came up in September, we knew it was the right time. We uprooted our lives out of Calgary and left towards Kelowna with nothing but our closest belongings in the car with us. We arrived on October 1st, not knowing a single person, and began our new life in this beautiful city. I can’t wait to see what year two has in store for us.

We were fortunate enough to have some impromptu anniversary photos taken of us in the mountains earlier this fall. Thank you to Genevieve Renee Photographie for these beautiful keepsakes! Xx

Mackenzie Jane | Kelowna Wedding Photographer

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