Sunday, March 15, 2009


I still plan on doing a post about how Garret and I met closer to our anniversary (which is in just a month and a half!).  But today I want to talk about relationships (ours), because I have gotten comments from so many people in our lives about how they want what we have.  G's co-workers tease him about making kissy noises on the phone with me whenever we get off the phone (it's something we started when we were thousands of miles apart on different continents).  What people see is generally us at our cutest, at our best moments (well, not our "best" but good ones).  

We are not perfect.  Not even close.  We have disagreements occasionally.  And I have a temper, so when I am mad I had a tendency to yell.  But we decided a while back that we love each other.  We just "get" each other in a way that is rare for two people.  And that, let's face it, if we can't make it work together, who will we make it work with?  Because we married our best friend.  Best friends fight, but they don't generally walk away from each other, because they know that the other person knows them better than anyone else does and still loves them anyway.  

I truly believe that there comes a point in every marriage where a person decides that no matter what, they aren't walking away from the other person and they stick to it.  For some lucky people that happens the day they wed.  For most it happens over time.  Our first year of marriage was a doozy.  Aforementioned temper grouped with the fact that I don't like to let a person know when they have hurt my feelings tends to make for some explosive conversations.  A lot of slammed doors (something I did a lot as a child and never grew out of) and the occasional broken glass (I learned to not throw things quickly.....I had to clean up the mess, and it was generally an item I was sad to have broken).  But this past year our marriage has gotten stronger.  The past few months have been the most wonderful of our marriage.  And why?  Because we decided to make them, to focus on us.  I made the conscious decision that I wasn't walking away from this marriage (something that I had sometimes fleetingly thought of doing our first year).  I have made a lot of effort to curb my temper, to learn to talk it out rather than yell.  And Garret decided to really make an effort to romance me.  Hence the flowers, and the making of dinner.  It wasn't always like this.

Relationships, and marriage especially, take a lot of work.  They take being conscious of the other person, really seeing them and what is going on in their life apart from you.  They take all the things you hear about: trust, faith, love.  For the most part I think the problems in relationships stem from people going into one, feeling passion, feeling "in love" but not thinking about what it will be like once that dies down a bit.  I am "in love" with Garret, but if I didn't love him as much as I do, as a verb, deciding to love him and show him that through actions, we would never make it.  That feeling of being "in love" is great, but loving someone when times get tough?  That's a hell of a lot harder.  You have to love someone even when their "bad" traits come out.  Even when you don't like them very much.  Love is not something that happens to you, it's something you do.  An action you take towards another person. 

My favorite moments with G that we've had recently have been: dancing in the kitchen lit with candles, giggling with him under the covers as I talk about how crazy I think Madonna is (I kept repeating over and over "Have you seen her?!?"---we had been up for about 20 hours), being half asleep and trying to explain to Garret how to tell when the cinnamon rolls were done, curling up on the couch reading Miss Manners online and having my husband thinks she's almost as great as I think she is.  It's the little moments.  The ones that we tend to forget over time, but that I feel will flash before us in the end.  The moments where you see, truly see, the person you're with and think how lucky you are to be with them.  Moments such as when G is asleep next to me in bed and I am reading, but I look down at him curled up as close to me as is possible without osmosis and I think, "I love this man."  

Here's my favorite quote about marriage from a movie:
Susan Sarandon's character in Shall We Dance says this in response to why people get married:
"We need a witness to our lives. There's a billion people on the planet ... I mean, what does any one life really mean? But in a marriage, you're promising to care about everything. The good things, the bad things, the terrible things, the mundane things ... all of it, all of the time, every day. You're saying 'Your life will not go unnoticed because I will notice it. Your life will not go un-witnessed because I will be your witness'."

 I think it's the closest anyone has ever come to saying it right.

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