Your mother and I have been married for a little over a year. By absolutely no means are we marriage experts, but I figure that by the time you have your first date when you’re 25, we will have mastered the principles talked about in these next few posts. So, here we are: 12 things we learned in 12 months (+1) of marriage:
This is part 2 of 3. Part 1 can be found here.
2. Fight like Italians
People are shocked when we tell them that we fight. For some reason, people think that nice people are quiet people. Calm people. Every newscast about the gunman that ends with an interview of the next-door neighbor who says “He just seemed like a nice guy” screams in the face of such logic.
Well, we do fight. And loudly. We use our hands and scream and get really dramatic like Italians in commercials. Which, for me, is surprising considering the closest we are to Italian is the frozen pizza in our fridge.
Truth be told, we could do much better at learning to speak calmly rather than scream, but considering that avoidance of conflict is a harbinger of divorce, I like our way better. It’s better to be lions learning to whisper than to be mice trying to roar.
3. Take showers together
Save water. Get close. Other things to follow. Forget killing two birds with one stone. This is as good as killing two words with one stone, and then having the stone turn into a dump truck full of jellybeans.
4. Live your memories
We just saw The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, and one of my favorite scenes –spoiler alert!- is when he finally finds the elusive Sean O’Connell atop the Himalayas. He’s sitting there, quietly perched with a telephoto lens in an outcropping of rocks, waiting for the even more elusive snow leopard, the ghost cat, to appear. When it finally does stroll through the frame, Sean sits back from the camera and doesn’t take the picture.
Walter Mitty looks at him perplexed, to which he responds, “Some moments I like to keep for myself.” Or something like that.
Everyone should have some of those moments. Airplane window views of silver-lined clouds on a full moon that aren’t on Instagram. Scooter rides through monsoons that don’t make it on Vine. Eruptions of laughter when your cousin tries to do pushups that didn’t make it to youtube.
The internet is a cool place. Life is cooler. Live it. Tweet about it later.
5. Play more chess
This is smarter, more positive way of saying watch less television. Not only does television shrinkwrap your brain in stupid wrapping, but it takes you away from quality time with the people you love. It’s better to yell your mate, checkmate. Better even, for your immediate future, to hear her say it.
6. “Yes, dear” are the two most important words you’ll ever learn
Seriously. These words are life. But be careful. Anything that brings life can also bring death. Use these words wisely, and know that they are so powerful because they are directly attached to action. Using “yes, dear” as a substitute for “I love you and I am on your team and I’m going to do the dishes right now” is the way to happiness. Using “yes, dear” as a substitute for “Yeah, I’m just saying filler words and want you to not be talking anymore” is the way to the couch.
7. Always remember to never say always or never
There is no such thing. Black and white characters are reserved for Disney movies and fables. You and your partner are neither. Don’t say they are. It will lead to more of the previously mentioned Italian fighting, and less of the showers.