The first year of marriage is smooth sailing for some, but others find it to be a beautifully bumpy ride.
We asked HuffPost readers to share the one photo that represents what their first year as a married couple was actually like. The 17 moments captured in the images below are a reminder that no obstacle is too great with the right person by your side.
My husband gets social anxiety, even though he’s one of the most charismatic people I’ve ever met. I promised when I married him that I would always be sure to make him as uncomfortable as I could while in public -- you know, shock therapy. Treatment is proving strong. So is our marriage. -- Kerry D.
My husband, Alan, took this picture. He pushed me into light, which makes this picture an accurate metaphor for our first year of marriage. We learned to celebrate even the smallest of victories for each other and discovered that basking in the light, no matter how small the reason, was good for the both of us. -- Shalisa M.
We'd just said our vows and our first year of marriage had officially kicked off. We did our first dance and then we had a dance to another song planned, but the DJ ended up playing a different song. We just looked at one another and winged it to Jagged Edge's "Let’s Get Married." Since then, we have winged it for meals where we haven’t had anything that matched in the fridge, with no extra money, hoping for the best. We’ve winged it when one of us was embarking on a new adventure, making sure the other knew that, no matter what, the other was cheering on the sidelines. And we’ve winged it when life got tough, learning how to navigate adulthood. Marriage isn’t easy all the time, but when you look in your spouse’s eyes and see your best friend looking back, winging it doesn’t seem so scary. -- Danielle W.
Michael and I were married in August 2016. We knew we couldn’t have kids together so we set out to foster and adopt. We became licensed foster parents in December 2016. Ten kids full-time in less than a year. Nineteen in total have passed through our doors. We took this picture after a long, exhausting day of chasing kids, working our full-time jobs We were ready for bed but needed some "us" time. Most couples have a year to settle into marriage. Not us. We jumped in head-first with our first placement on our first day of having a license to foster children. And that was after doing countless hours of training, background checks, finger-printing, etc. Our first year of marriage was trying, to say the least, but I’ve realized this man would do anything to make me happy and I would do the same for him. It’s been hectic but we wouldn’t change a thing. -- Kristina V.
Here's a picture of us about eight months in. SO. IN. LOVE. This was before doctors told us our chance for a baby was less than 5 percent, a time when those vows we said were only words -- we had no reference yet for the "for better or worse, in sickness and in health." When you're a newlywed, you don't consider hardship or tough times. But a marriage that is built on friendship, love, honesty and kindness? Turns out that'll get you through anything. -- Malorie K.
This is the only scanned picture I have from my first year of marriage -- before digital cameras were mainstream, like 2002. Anyway, I got married the year after I graduated from college. My first year of marriage I was in teachers college. I was very young and for our first Halloween, I decided to carve a pumpkin. I put it on our balcony and left it there until the next summer when we moved out of that apartment. When we moved out, I left the pumpkin in the elevator to freak someone out. This picture represents how completely unprepared I was to be adulting, yet there I was, married. Also, how inherently lazy I am. -- Lindsay W.
This is, by far, my favorite photo from the whole wedding day because it perfectly sums up everyone in the photo. My now-wife has been saying since we first started dating that once we got married, she was going to take my last name (Morgan). That way, once we were married, she could make everyone call her Captain Morgan. Our wedding venue had this boat for photo-ops, and we took full advantage. The looks on our bridesmates' (see what we did there?) faces as my stepdaughter steers the boat out of control sums up their personalities perfectly. This photo cracks me up every time I see it. Our daily life is just like this photo and I love it. -- Riley M.
A month after we got married, life knocked us down but we were still able to move into our new house. The house looks empty but my husband and I have shown resilience. We have everything since we have each other. We have years to make memories in our home that may have started bare, but will soon be filled with love and laughter. -- Crystal G.
My husband and I met online, married after five months together and merged our families, which now include eight weirdos. Our life is the perfect mixture of caring for each other in the most personal and necessary ways (I enjoy making his daily task-oriented life easier and he is the emotional rock I never knew existed) to deliberately and purposefully calling on one another to be accountable and grow. We laughed and ate and ate and laughed at this banana pudding. It's one of my favorite memories from our first few months. -- Danielle R.
My husband and I got married at the young ages of 21 and 23. We were so young, so stupid, so broke and so very in love. This is us in our tiny first kitchen, barely any room for one person, where we would sit and eat and talk late into the night. This picture captures how happy we were with so little to our name. -- Melanie B.
When I planned this photo shoot, I had imagined us looking romantically into each other's eyes in the middle of this vast field. As the photographer posed us and directed us and asked us to fake laugh, he had to break the stiffness by sticking his tongue out in the middle of this "picture-perfect" moment, giving me the most genuine laugh when I later saw the photo. There have been so many times I imagined a perfect vacation or date night or move-in and it hasn't gone as planned. But he is always there being silly and making me smile. I've fallen madly in love with every imperfect moment we've spent together because it's somehow even better than what I imagined. -- Aimee B.
My husband and I got married on Feb. 11. On Feb. 17, we set off on foot from our home in Birmingham in the U.K. to Istanbul, Turkey. It took us eight months to cross Europe with a tent on our backs as accommodations. It was the most wonderful honeymoon anyone could wish for. However, we got back to Birmingham a week ago and married life may prove to be more difficult than life on the road! -- Helen S.
It may look like a posed picture now, but this certainly wasn't the plan we had for our first Christmas as a married couple. I dreamt of fires, too much food and celebrating with family. David's work decided it was going to be a Christmas trip from London to India and back, landing late Christmas Day. David's birthday is also Dec. 23, which fell during that trip as well. Despite having less than 24 hours on the turnaround, I knew I couldn't let him have that first Christmas alone. We'd celebrate together somehow. -- Nicole L.
My husband and I met and after three months, we got married. Within that first year, we bought a house and I became pregnant with our first kid. -- Jessica K.
We spent our first year of marriage laughing at each other. Laughing as we learned what made each other tick, what frustrated us and which one of us got mad about leaving the water on while brushing our teeth or not putting the cap back on the toothpaste. Like most newlyweds, and considering we were only 19 years old, our first year was full of ups and downs. But seven years later, this is still the best picture to describe our marriage. We’re always laughing, loving and living life to the fullest. I wouldn’t trade a single minute of this crazy life we’ve built together. -- Erin Leigh D.
This picture totally tells the tale of our first year of marriage -- pure love and bliss. We have been together for 18 years but we've been married only one year and 10 months. I truly believe that we became more in love after our wedding. It has been nothing but butterflies for me from the first day to this one. I truly love this man. -- Sylvia H.
This photo shows how much I love him -- so much that I want to eat his face! -- Michael M.
- This article originally appeared on HuffPost.