It's been a little while since my last #LifeAfterTheDress post and I have been wanting to share Kristin's story with you for ages, so I am very happy to finally have it ready here on the blog.
In this series I interview married women of all ages and from all walks of life and ask them real questions about their lives now, after all the glitter and sparkle of their wedding day is over. You can read more about the other ladies I have interviewed so far by clicking here.
So grab yourself a cup of tea and get ready to be inspired by Kristin's story.
Q1: Please introduce yourself (age, of both yourself and your husband, where do you live, what do you do & how long have you been married for?)
My name is Kristin Louw (28), married to my husband Etienne Louw (29) for one year and seven months. We live in an apartment complex in Greenstone, Johanneburg (South Africa). My husband is a software developer and I work as Digital Marketing Services Manager for NAB Caxton. We had dated for 6.5 years when we got married. He proposed on New Year's Eve, an awesome surprise, and were engaged for just over a year before tying the knot!
Q2: Which Disney character do you feel sums you up to a ‘T’?
Probably Ariel due to her fondness for collecting things and upcyling things for a new purpose! Plus I love the seaside.
Q3: How did you and your hubby meet?
We met at university where we were each donating blood with a friend! I brought him juice & biscuits afterwards because I thought he was cute :)
Q4: Was your wedding everything you hoped it would be? Would you go back and change anything? Do you have any advice for brides-to-be?
It was the most perfect, blissful day surrounded by family & friends. The day before POURED (and I mean POURED) with rain so we were a little nervous, but after all you can't predict the weather when you set the date a year ago! But on the day itself we were blessed with blue skies and just a little drizzle that started as we did our first dance so it was kind of magical.
My advice to brides to be would be to a.) BREATHE and b.) Enjoy every second - from the time you get engaged to the moment you through that bouquet and jet off on honeymoon. It really does go by extremely fast, especially the big day itself. Take the time to catch your breath, take in your surroundings and soak up the moment. When else will you ever have all the people that you love in one room again? But at the end of it all, even if your wedding was not the "flawless day" you imagined, just remember it's one day in a long lifetime of days and every day of marriage can be better than the last.
Another piece of advice that I would perhaps give to my pre-married self would be to take a local honeymoon! Firstly, nowhere is more beautiful than our own country, but you can save yourself the jet lag, 25 hour travel time and extra money. While we went on honeymoon to Thailand and we both really did enjoy it, both my husband & I agreed afterwards that overseas travel is all about adventure & exploring, whereas honeymoon is a time to really just relax, sleep and enjoy your first weeks as husband & wife while recovering from the race to the wedding.
Q5: Has ‘life after the dress’ been as you imagined it would be?
It's been weird & wonderful - what I expected & not (in a good way). My husband & I did not live together before we were married so there was a lot to get used to. While we did bicker a little at first, we soon found our groove and it has been lovely overall. We love not having to balance our schedules and make arrangements to see each other - you just wake up and decide what you want to do together that day! It's like having a sleep over every day with your best friend.
Q6: What do you think makes marriage work?
We give each other space to our own person, but always remember that we are two parts of the same whole at the end of the day. I think faith, trust, love and appreciation are key ingredients that make marriage work. Plus a good healthy dose of patience! Ultimately however, I think a marriage with God as the foundation is the most important thing to making it work.
Q7: What have you learnt about yourself since being married?
I quite like baking, which my husband does not complain about! ;)
Q8: If you could describe your marriage in 3 words, what would they be?
Adventure, honesty, laughter
Q9: Do you have any pearls of wisdom you would like to share with my readers about being married? Perhaps something some wise person once told you, or something you’ve learnt the hard way?
I was once told that marriage is not 50/50. It's 100/100, and if you both give it your all every day, you will never run out as you will always balance & refuel each other.
Also, marriage is a triangle with you and your partner on the bottom corners & God at the top. The closer you grow to God, the closer you will ultimately grow to each other :)
I hope you have been enjoying this series as much as I have enjoyed putting it together.
If you would like to be featured here on the blog, you can drop me an email using the contact form above or leave me a comment below. I look forward to hearing from you!