Today is our 19th Wedding Anniversary.
And so one would say, “Oh, your 19th Anniversary, what are you going to do to celebrate? Are you going out to dinner? Are you going to go on a little trip, maybe to Napa, go wine-tasting?” I would have to reply “No, we are not doing anything special.” The person who posed the question would most likely slump their shoulders, lean back and look slightly deflated, as if to say “Why not?”
At that point, I would have to explain my stance on anniversaries and other such days that come around annually.
It is not the days each year that are designated for celebration that make a marriage continue. It is all the other days; the day in and day out, the drudgery of daily life (laundry, meals, diapers, fevers and so on and so forth), standing by one another, supporting each other, that makes up a marriage. That is what makes a marriage last and flourish.
It is all the days in between, when a spouse looks at their partner, and thinks they are the most exasperating, annoying, thoughtless, and whacked-out human being that ever walked the face of the earth, but doesn’t say a word. Because at the end of the day, they realize, it is all of those crazy idiosyncrasies that make up the person they have chosen to be spend their life with – the person they adore and cherish.
So why change any of that? Because a husband or wife or partner is presented as a ‘package deal’, there can’t be just good qualities (think the Stepford Wives), there has to be some that are annoying, crazy or nonsensical. But to stay married, one has to learn to live with ALL of it.
Because two people are married, it does not mean they have to become mirror-images of each other. They should not be expected to enjoy everything their partner/spouse/significant-other enjoys. Participants in a marriage need to have their own interests, things that they love to do, but should not expect or demand their partner to participate in, or learn to love, whatever it is they find fascinating. Married people should meld together, not disappear into one another (because usually it is the partner that does the disappearing that becomes resentful and feels squashed).
In saying all of that, No – we are not doing anything special today. Our Anniversary always falls on the weekend of The Master’s (golf). This happens to be my husband’s favorite golf match of the year. It is his weekend to watch golf and not do much of anything else. And I totally understand that. For me, with him watching his golf, I go outside and enjoy the Spring weather, putter around in the garden, get covered in dirt, spend time with the dogs and enjoy the air, the birds, and the chartreuse green of the new leaves of Spring. And because we do the things we love, our Anniversary is always a wonderful day – even though we do nothing special. But we are together in spirit.
Happy Anniversary, my friend!!!!