Friday, February 15, 2013

on years and years of marriage.

Last night, after ditching the ballet at intermission, in an attempt to stretch out our last anniversary hours, we stopped at a local restaurant, cozied up at a table in the corner of the bar and ordered a wine, a coffee, a Diet Coke, a carrot cake, and a creme brûlée.  We sat and laughed at our own bravery for donning our coats and walking out of the ballet performance.  We wondered how many others had done the same.  We also couldn't help but laugh at {with} the rather obnoxious table next to ours, where an awkward double-valentine's-day-date was taking place.  Their conversation choked desperately in the beginning and just couldn't get going.

One guy:  Do you ever watch Honey Boo Boo?
Other girl:  He won't let me watch that.
*awkward silence

And then suddenly, one girl either became very confident or lost her confidence completely and made up for it with a most intense, repellent, loud, hilarious, awful, repetitive, forced, Sponge Bob laugh.  She laughed her tremendous laugh every single time someone at her table paused from speaking, which was every thirty seconds.  At first Husband and I laughed.  And then we started feeling very lucky that neither one of us laughed like that.  I leaned over and whispered to him, that's the kind of laugh that's funny at first, but years later it starts triggering thoughts of sharp objects and ways to shut the laugh up.  Psychotic much?

In between the painfully forced laughter bouts, I asked Husband what he thought about how we've managed to stay married for 14 years, what he thought we could accredit it to.  He very simply stated that he thinks we just knew {all those years ago} that we were compatible.  There really isn't anything we do, we just get along.  Well, that sounds easy enough, doesn't it?  In all honesty though, I'm not sure the word "compatible" ever crossed my mind when we first met.  I'm not sure much more crossed my mind than "I love this man" and "oh boy, I really love this man!"  I didn't think about the future, I didn't make assumptions about our growing lives together, I didn't try to imagine what living together would be like.  I couldn't know how he would be with trust, money, having babies, working, being supportive, etc.  I couldn't know if he would let me decorate the house MY way, ever help clean a toilet, ever help change a diaper, ever encourage me to go back to school.  I couldn't know if I would be able to support his needs, cook him fabulous dinners, iron his pants just so.  No, all I knew back then is what I know now.  I just want to be with him.  And when I think back on all of these 14 years {it's such a long time}, through the really great times, through the words that hurt, through the words that inspired, through our amazing experiences, I couldn't imagine ever coming all this way, building all of this up, just to let it go.  Even at my most annoyed and frustrated, when I feel like hopping in the car and driving off into foreverland, I know I will never do that.  I will sit tight and work it out.  Because I want to.  He's my best friend, my go-to guy.  He's the first person I share news with, the keeper of my secrets.  I've chosen to sink everything I have and everything I am into this guy.  Whether or not that choice was based on a whim all of those years ago, it has no bearing.  I was full of whimsy back then and somehow a little of that has still survived.  I think, boy I got lucky I didn't marry a serial killer or something.  Fate, luck, whatever you call it.  Compatibility.  Our marriage is a choice.  It's always been a choice.  We are two separate people and one of us could hit the road at anytime.  But we choose to stay.  We want to stay, so that makes the choice easy.

And so, after all of this rambling, I think I like Husband's idea of compatibility.  But I also like my idea that even during those times when we may not feel so compatible, that we make the choice to put on our big girl/boy panties and deal with it.  Compromise.  Be giving, rather than taking.  Focusing on other rather than self.  And laughing.  For goodness sake, laughing a lot.  Like, all the time.  Laugh together, people.  You've got to laugh.  Even at the sounds of other people's horrific laughter, in a bar, after you've just ditched the ballet.

P.S. When Husband awoke this morning to throbbing eye pain I asked, "too much ballet last night?"  


  1. Loved this post. I agree that it all comes down to compatibility and just loving being together.


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