I recently celebrated my seventh wedding anniversary. By no means is seven years a milestone, but in this day in age when divorce papers are as common as wedding nuptials, seven years is a pretty good benchmark. We've made it this far. Haven't killed each other yet. Finances are in order. Food is on the table. Kids are healthy. All is good in the Big Guy household.
As I mulled over the seven years and everything in between, I started to think about the things I forgot during the courting years and the stuff I had no idea was coming down the pike during the marathon that is marriage. It's what I call the Ying and Yang of the marriage process.
Courting Year Stuff
- Remember what it was like to be a little gun shy to call your girl's house or apartment for the first time? You had nothing really to say and was just calling to put in the quality time so you could give things a "test drive" (read between the lines).
- Speaking of test drives, there was this constant feeling of chasing the rabbit around the dog track. Sometimes you won the race, but you never really caught the rabbit. You won, but you didn't win if you catch my drift.
- Little things weren't all that important. By little things I mean quirks - how she sneezed, how she ordered her food, how she managed her cash, etc. None of that stuff bothered you because you were still chasing that damn rabbit.
- There was always a sense of excitement and newness. Everything you did was brand spanking new - first time out to dinner; first time going to the movies; first time chasing the rabbit (hehehe); and, the first time just hanging out on the couch and eating bad Chinese food.
- There was also a general excitement to see and talk to each other as often as you humanly could (again, with a not so hidden agenda).
Seven Years Later
- Calling the house now means that you are checking in to see what you need to pick up on the way home from work. Better yet, what you don't know in the courting period is that you'll get a call every day, at 3pm on the nose for basically nothing. It's more predictable than the Tom Brady pulling out a last minute win in the 4th quarter.
- Test drives? Sorry man, those days are over. You are now the proud owner of something that is like a lucky charm. It's always there when you need it. You just make sure it's having a good day, has been drinking wine and that the kids are sound asleep. And if it's Thursday, especially since the last time you test drove was two weeks ago, you're in like Flynn, i.e. Every Other Thursday.
- Want to talk about little things? Well, let me tell you that as you get seven (or more) years deep, it's all about the little things: don't forget the anniversary; keep the toilet seat down; when you get the look, don't even bother asking for a test drive; don't think that you get bonus points for saying I love you once and a while; and, flowers just aren't something you bring home when you screwed up.
- The only thing that is new is waiting for the mail to see what bill arrived that day. Routines are the name of the game but there's a comfortably factor in it, which is much better than newness. Trust me on this.
- When it comes to talking, there's lots of it. But it's now mostly about your day, your future plans, where you need to be this weekend, etc. Then there's also times when there is no talking. Your both so confortable with each other than you realize that it's better to keep your pie hole shut and enjoy the quiet time as opposed to talking about crap that happened at work or how one of the kids stuck a M&M up their nose.
Overall, each side of the coin has it's good attributes and bad attributes. The thing is, however, when you're on either side, you either one, can't envision what the other side was or will be like, or two, can never go back.