My husband and I celebrated our 10-year "meet-a-versary" last week. I can't believe it has been 10 years since we met each other in a bar. It seems like yesterday I met him with his tapered high-water gray corduroy pants and massive sideburns.
We had mutual friends who were dating who thought we'd be a good fit for each other. I played games for about a month - said I'd go to meet him, but wouldn't show up. On the 22nd of October, 2002, I decided I would go out and maybe he'd be there, or maybe he wouldn't. He was, and it was an instant connection, to say the least. He talked about his family, especially his nieces who were then the ages of 4 and 6, and he went on and on about how much fun he had with them and how he wanted children just like them. He talked about how his parents were still married and how he was really close with both of them. And he talked about how he had just applied to Pratt School of Design in New York City.
He called me a few days after we met and that was it. We were inseparable. About four months after dating, I knew I would marry him. I actually know the exact moment I knew. We were in a jazz bar in Norfolk, he looked over at me to give me a look and my ears seriously started ringing. I knew, at that very moment, HE was IT, and 6 months after that, I followed him to New York City after he got accepted into Pratt.
So I know that a lot of stories start out this way. Boy meets girl - they fall in love. Some of those couples get married. Some do not. Some have kids. Some do not. Some fall in love, get married and fall out of love before having kids. Some fall in love, get married, have kids and fall out of love after they have kids. That's just the way it goes, right? It's life.
Aside from talking about my amazing husband and my gorgeous child, the discussion of relationships is my most favorite thing to talk about. I think about how two people meet, whether it is a romantic relationship or a friendship, and I wonder how their relationship keeps going, and how some just fizzle out.
Two weekends ago, my husband and I had promised our little toddler that we would go get icees at this place called Uncle Louis G's in Park Slope, Brooklyn. She LOVES icees. So we made a special trip just for her - swore we'd get her a flavor the color of white like pina colada or coconut so her clothing wouldn't get ruined (yep! I'm one of THOSE moms!). Instead, they were out of those flavors, and she wanted tropical rainbow which, yes, consisted of cherry! She enjoyed every bite and while we walked back to the car both, my husband and I, on either side holding her hand, counting "1, 2, 3" and lifting her up (also one of her favorite things to do), we noticed a couple fighting on the sidewalk. In broad daylight. With two little boys standing next to them on scooters. The husband was obviously extremely angry at his wife and the argument escalated to him yelling in her face (seriously close enough for her to smell his breath) and he stormed off leaving her and her two little boys on the sidewalk. The boys in complete hysterics and the wife calm, as if this obviously wasn't the first time this has happened.
And I got in the car and cried.
In ten years, my husband has NEVER yelled at me. EVER. Listen, don't get me wrong, he's not perfect. No one is perfect. He gets annoyed with me. He actually got annoyed with me just a few days ago after I asked him to bring some stuff down to the basement to put in our storage unit because I was sick of looking at it. He told me I was being crazy (which, shit, I am crazy because I'm 39 weeks pregnant! duh!) and he told me I needed to calm myself (which made me even more crazy). But five minutes later, he walked me to the door, he kissed me goodbye and he told me to have a wonderful day, just as he does every single morning.
And I'm grateful for the marriage I have. I don't take him for granted. When my husband hurts my feelings, he knows it. And when other people in life hurt my feelings, they know it. That's me, and that's how I've always been. And this is the reason I think I have such long lasting friendships in my life.
Relationships are complicated....
(to be continued)