Hello from the Other Side (of Marriage)

January 20, 2017

It’s been awhile since I’ve written here, but trust me when I say it was time away well-spent. Within these last few weeks, I have gained a new last name, a new full-time job, and a new perspective of everything from grocery shopping, to cooking for two, and sharing a tiny bed. Though extremely overwhelming at times, I don’t think I have ever felt more at home than I do waking up next to my extremely good-looking, kind-hearted, and task-obsessed husband. This is not because Zack is perfect, because he’s not. It isn’t because marriage meets my every need. Because again, it doesn’t even come close. It is a home because it is the harvest of all our years of seeking purity, trusting the Lord, living 4+ hours apart, and investing in our future, our marriage, and our family.

The Wedding was everything we could have dreamt it would be, thanks to my superhero Mom, my amazing Matron and Maid of Honor, Amberli and Katie, my awesome wedding director, Mrs. Gowan, and the many others who made our day so special for us. In one night I got to see my 49 year old dad tear up the dance floor- literally. I got to get all dressed up and eat cake. And, I got to celebrate one of the biggest blessings that I have ever received with all of my closest friends and family members.

gracineverything and Zack Johnson

Adulthood has probably been the hardest adjustment. For those of you keeping up with our journey, Zack has been working at Coastal Carolina University now for almost a year. I graduated from Clemson University December 15th, and started my first job at LHWH, an advertising and PR firm, here in Myrtle Beach, a few days after we landed from our honeymoon. You can follow along with our company blog and our work here. The opportunity to learn from some of the kindest, most passionate, and humble people in the business is an incredible blessing.


The Honeymoon was beyond anything we could have imagined. Zack and I landed in Curacao, a small Caribbean Island between Aruba and Venezuela, January 1st. We were picked up by an old white jeep, our rental car for the week, and a local dutch woman named Angie. It was the 30 minute trip to our hut when we realized we were honeymooning in a third world country. Our inferences were affirmed when we got to our mosquito infested, hot-waterless, and barely air-conditioned tiny house. Though we were not particularly impressed by the facility itself, we were awe-struck by the view from the front porch.  Our favorite memories included sailing to a nearby deserted island, Klein Curacoa, to spend the day in seclusion- although Zack might disagree due to his seasickness on the way over and the entire crew focusing more on trying to keep him from puking than sailing the boat. We both enjoyed exploring the island and falling asleep under a cabana. We spent another day searching all of the beaches for sea turtles until we finally found one in a fishing village near the western point of the island.  We chugged fresh fruit smoothies and tried continually to like the dutch food on the island that we finally decided was too gross to keep trying. We (I) jumped off cliffs. We devoured a delicious (American) meal on our porch watching the sun sink below the horizon. We hiked (for like 3 hours) looking for a cave, that we never found. We snorkeled from our tiny private beach and spotted octopus, eels, and thousands of fish. And, we recovered from the previous few weeks of insane stress and transition.

So far, here are the things we have learned. We know we have a long journey ahead of us, but each day has been a blessing with one another that we are determined to not take for granted.

1. Bills SUCK

2. Sharing a full bed with a full grown man is tough

3. Ending each day in prayer and the Word is essential

4. Myrtle Beach is not as warm as you think it’d be

5. Marriage is an amazing opportunity to grow closer to the Lord

We are reading through John together at night, and this verse has resonated with this adventure we have embarked upon:

“In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind.”– John 1:4

It is a reminder that the light, freedom, and joy of mankind cannot be found if not through the Amazing Grace of Christ. It cannot be found in marriage, in family, in circumstances- only Him.

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