Why We Wine

Adults Know All

When I was a kid dreaming of becoming the famous person that I am, all the grown ups around me seemed to have life figured out. They had it together. Bills paid, scheduled car maintenance, starched clothes that looked professional and well-planned, mortgages, taxes, family organizational skills… all the adults were killin it as far as I could tell. All of them. {Except the guy that owned the store that we all knew was a cover for his weed business. But that guy served a different purpose.} I always assumed that there was some magical age where I would start wearing matching socks and get regular oil changes. I’ve since learned that there is no magical age. Turns out, grown ups in the ‘90’s were just really good at faking it (wink, wink).

Reality Bites

Based on my juvenile observations, adulthood wasn’t supposed to be chaotic and overwhelming. Finding love was never supposed to lead to heartache. Parenthood isn’t supposed to feel impossible. BUT IT IS, IT DID, AND IT DOES! Let me tell you a little secret if you haven’t discovered it for yourself already: the grown up world is rotten with the stench of reality. A reality that would be much more palatable if it weren’t falsely presented as perfection to us as kids through TV and movies, leaving songs such as “Purple Rain”, “You Outta Know”, and “Here I Go Again” my only hint as to the truth of reality. [And, I don’t know about you, but I thought “Secret Agent Man” by Johnny Rivers was really a song about a secret Asian man, and that’s just ONE example, so you can understand the messages of song were lost on me.]

For example: Walt Disney is a lying arsehole. I’ve never met a guy who would attempt to slay a dragon for my honor. I HAVE, however, met a few guys who would named their man hose “Dragon”. If Sleeping Beauty (AKA, the princess I most identify with) met a guy that her family warned her against, who lied and manipulated his way into her heart, knocked her up, then left her for someone younger and more ethnically diverse, I’d say he was describing my first marriage. It would be a warning to all little girls to look out for liars. And it would be useful. But that’s not what he did. So I thought all guys were protective and chivalrous… turns out, some of them are… noooooot.

Also, whoever wrote the Brady Bunch is a lying arsehole. Families don’t resolve their differences in 30 minutes or less. I didn’t know that and didn’t understand why my sister and I were still arguing after 31 minutes. I have one family member who has been holding a grudge against me for YEARS. But, then again, we don’t have Alice with her quick quips to help us see the light of reason.

Additionally, the guy who started Pinterest: AN ABSOLUTE ARSEHOLE. Pinterest is the sole reason women everywhere feel inadequate upon seeing our results after trying to bake from scratch the impossible candy-filled unicorn mirror glazed cake. And don’t get me started on the homemade charcoal mask that takes the top 6 layers of your face off. Could we get a social media platform that bakes the cake for us? Cuz that would be great. Oh, wait. Hey, Uber Eats! How you doin’?

The last example provided in this super-impactful, news-worthy, and vividly-made point: the male creator of Wonder Woman is a lying arsehole. When I run around in the same outfit as Wonder Woman, no cool music plays, I don’t gain any super human fighting skills, and people threaten to call the police. Also, I’m still waiting on my magic lasso, which, by the way, has yet to even SHIP! I bet it doesn’t even work.

All these realizations have culminated into a big let down. You know how you felt when you learned that Santa, the Easter Bunny, AND the Tooth Fairy were all made up? Yeah, like that. I feel like that every. single. day.

It’s Fine

Because reality has been a bit different than I imagined, I’ve found ways to cope with the misalignment of expectations. For example: “It’s fine.” I say that a lot. It’s such a versatile phrase! Shat goes south but I’m trying to convince myself that it’s survivable- “it’s fine”. My husband picks a restaurant I don’t really want to go to because he’s super healthy and I just want fried chicken bathed in honey mustard and chocolate lava cake with vanilla ice cream for dessert but I don’t want to disagree because I’m a hopeless co-dependent AND I want to pretend like PMS isn’t ruling my life right now- “it’s fine”. My son strings gum out of his mouth and then wraps it around his neck before I can stop him- “it’s fine”. My daughter makes muffins and dumps half of the batter on the floor and now the dogs are “cleaning up the chocolate chips”- “it’s fine”. My dog gets scared by a passing dump truck and poo’s on the floor minutes before our house warming party… you guessed it! But sometimes “it’s fine” doesn’t work.

Now What?

We don’t have to go very far to hear what we’re doing wrong. We don’t exercise enough. We exercise too much. We shouldn’t dress like a school marm. We should really dress more conservatively. Have a career. Don’t work so much. Let your kids sleep in your bed. Don’t. You’ll kill them with your fat rolls. Don’t hug your kids too much… they’ll spoil. Discipline your kids, but not THAT way. Count calories, count fat grams, count carbs, eat carbs, don’t eat carbs, kale is all you should eat, and cauliflower is pizza now. Take meds to manage the stress, don’t take meds to manage the stress. I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO ANYMORE! Who does? Who can tell me what to do cuz I have no fuq’n clue.

We are doing our best some days just to keep everything going. Relationships, careers, parenthood, expectations pile up like the unfolded laundry mountain and it’s easy to find yourself crying in a closet firmly grasping a bottle of champagne (hey, at least I keep it classy). But what if we were all more honest and forgiving with each other? What if we stopped hiding behind the fake perfection of staged social media pictures and smiles and showed what it’s REALLY like to be a grownup so that maybe it’ll be a little easier for those who will go through this stage of life after us? What if by sharing the hardships we all learn how normal it is to cry in the closet, go on mini-vacations to Target, or hide from our kids in the bathroom for just one moment of peace so that the next new mommy who comes along doesn’t think she’s doing EVERYTHING wrong?

You’re Enough

What’s rare to hear is what we’re doing RIGHT. Have you ever received a genuine and sincere compliment that has stuck with you all day, maybe for years? How great is that feeling?! What if we did more of that instead of breaking each other down so that we could feel superior for one second? We are more prepared for any journey when someone who’s already traveled that path tells us what to look out for. What if we did that for each other more often?

Yes, life is hard. Some good, some bad, some stupid… But there’s so much humor and beauty and good in the imperfect. If you ask me, that’s where the stories are. So, grab a glass of wine and accept the chaos. And maybe snap of picture of it. #whywomenwine We’ll swap war stories.

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What I’ve Learned in Six Years of Marriage

Y’all, Sunday was a special day. It marked the sixth anniversary of the day I said “I do!” to my husband (and he said it back). We had a “unique” start to our marriage. We both came into the marriage with a failed one under our belts, little 3-year-old Bella along for the ride, and I was pregnant with the unsuspecting man-sized baby Roman. The odds haven’t always been in our favor and there have been moments for both of us when we questioned what we’re doing. We don’t always get along. There are some fundamental differences we will always have. But I know I have a loyal partner and devoted dad. He is my best friend and my greatest supporter. Hopefully he feels the same way about me. I’ve learned a lot along the way. Most of the things I’ve learned would have made my marriage easier had I learned them sooner. So, if you’re contemplating marriage, even if you’ve done it before, read these lessons as a heads-up for what might be coming your way. For those veterans out there, let me know what I’ve missed.

Here are the four biggest things I’ve learned throughout my six years of marriage:

  1. Marriage is work. And one person can’t do it all. It takes both people fully committed to the marriage at all times. Even when you’re mad or sad or deflated or exhausted or sleeping or trying to sleep but you can’t cuz “someone” snores like a garbage disposal swallowing a metal spoon so you’re mad, sad, frustrated, and exhausted all at once and you start replaying that episode of Snapped where the woman got away with it, unless you fully expect to tell your kids “I left because I couldn’t take the snoring”, you still have to be committed… all the way to the sleep apnea doctor. I don’t think I really understood this and accepted it until well into our marriage. I was quick to say, “I think you should go.” Unfortunately I didn’t complete that sentence with “to the shooting range” or “buy yourself a TV”. He would have appreciated that more.  Know your boundaries and communicate them. Part of being committed 100% is communication. Say what you mean and mean what you say. You don’t have to say it mean but sometimes that helps 😉 Knowing your boundaries allows you to know when to give in and when to dig in your spiked stiletto heels.
  2. Marriage with babies is exhausting. Know this going in. Now, there’s no way for you to fully comprehend the level of exhaustion that you’ll experience until you are already in it. But know that it’s exhaustion like you can’t fathom. And in that state of exhaustion you have to take care of a little human being who doesn’t give a shat how exhausted you are. Or how sick you are. Or how busy you are. Or what your deadlines are for work. So now we have exhaustion, a demanding little person who can’t communicated in any other way than with super-sonic boom cries at 2:00 am, 2:15 am, 3 am, 3:12 am, 3:30 am, 3:31 am, 3:33 am, 4 am, 5 am… ALARM CLOCK!!! Time to get ready for work! Are you ready? Who’s ready? Oh, and after you work a full day, pick your baby up from daycare, feed the baby, bathe the baby, feed the baby again, put the baby to bed for the 1 hour you’ll get before the next crying sesh, you need to make purposeful time to spend with your partner. Um… what? All I want to do is watch reality TV to make me feel better about myself, drink a glass of wine, and kill some dark chocolate before I fall asleep on the couch in the middle of chewing my food. The trick is to keep it fun. Find a show to binge watch together and have a standing date on the couch. And let him be your face’s pillow when you pass out.
  3. Marriage with toddlers is war. Every minute is a battle. If you aren’t fighting your little person with newly found independence, you’re probably fighting with your spouse over something to do with parenting. Or something to do with how your routine has unexpectedly changed. “Why has the same load of laundry been drying for 3 days?” Well, maybe it’s because I keep forgetting the clothes are there and I have to wash them over again. Six times. Believe me, it’s not optimal for either of us. Know that it’s ok to fight. It’s healthy. And (this one was very important for me to learn) every fight doesn’t mean the end of the relationship. In fact, it can mean the strength of your relationship increases.
  4. Marriage with kids is a rollercoaster. Your kids are finally old enough to communicate when they’re sick, sad, hungry, thirsty, heartbroken, mad at you.  But when your kids crawl into your lap without warning and hug you and tell you how much they love you or when you take them somewhere fun and you hear them say, “THIS IS THE BEST. DAY. EVER!!!!” that’s your reward for passing stages one and two, grabbing the flagpole at the VERY TOP and saving the princess twice without losing any lives. This is the stage when you are probably more aligned strategically with your spouse. It’s probably more often a “parents vs. kids” situation where kids frequently say, “you’re mean! No one here even likes me!” If you hear this at least once a day, you’re probably doing this parenting thing perfectly and should consider writing a book. Also, date nights for us have happened more frequently at this stage than before because 1) it’s much easier to leave them when they’re yelling at you because you said ‘no’ to 3 brownies and 2) they’re vocal enough that you can trust them to tell you anything you may need to know, i.e. a bad babysitter. Marriage, parenting, life can all be scary. And that’s ok.

So I still don’t have it all figured out. Life is uncharted waters. But it’s nice to know I have a sailing partner. Hopefully we’ll still be just as committed to each other and our marriage in 50 years as we are right now. That’s right, I have him til he’s 91. What’s your best marriage advice?

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5 Things I’ve Learned from My Marriage

My husband holds a special record in my life. Our relationship is officially the longest relationship I have ever been in. In the 8 years we’ve known each other, I’ve learned some things. Below is a list of 5 things I’ve learned so far:

  1. I have to compromise. I have to compromise. I have to compromise.
  2. People who snore go to sleep faster than I can find my favorite wine in Costco. And I know exactly where it is. And I get that before I get anything else. So it doesn’t take me long, that’s my point.
  3. His hugs make me feel safer than I’ve ever felt in my life.
  4. Watching him comfort our children makes my heart cry happy tears.
  5. The hard days feel like I’m fighting for the heavyweight championship but the other 99% of the days are wonderful and make it all worth it.

My husband is my best friend. And I love him with all my heart. Unless he’s snoring. Like he is now.

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Divorce-A-Bration

My awesome cousin just got married. He deserves it and I hope he and his beautiful bride have a lifetime of happiness together. I hope their union is the opposite of my first one and much more similar to the one I have now. My hope is that they have the type of marriage that brings laughs and smiles and fun and comfortable respect to each other.

It took me surviving a failed marriage to realize that relationships aren’t supposed to be tragic. Yes, they’re hard work. But you aren’t supposed to cry. (Unless he pegs you with a Nurf gun ball on accident). Marriage isn’t supposed to make you second-guess who you are. (That’s what watching “I Am Cait” is for). It’s supposed to make you strive to be your best for your partner. It’s supposed to make you feel complete.

I never thought I would have a “mulligan” marriage. I don’t think anyone gets married thinking, “meh, we’ll give this a shot. Prolly won’t last long. Next time I think I’ll just go to the drive thru in Vegas”. You get married with hopes and dreams of your future together. You get married with plans for family and a lifetime of memories and having someone to grow old and fart in public with.

The moment that dream starts to fade you grab on to it with all you have and sacrifice yourself to bring it back. The worst feeling is knowing that someone you love doesn’t love you back. Divorce is tragic, crushing, devastating. It isn’t something that should be celebrated. Until…

He kicks you out of the house. With a baby. And takes his girlfriend to his graduation ceremony with his entire family to become a green beret instead of his wife and new baby after you’ve put your whole life on hold for 2 years so that he could follow his career. And draws out your divorce after promising not to just to twist the knife a little more. And owes you a shit ton of money. A person can only take so much before they break.

One day I stopped crying. One day I stopped expecting to get his love back. I stopped looking for that one word to say that would win him back. That was the day I felt free. And you bet your sweet ass that finally, a year and 2 months after I moved out, when our divorce was final, I celebrated. I cried happy tears. One of my best friends, Betsy, even had a Happy Divorce cake sent to my office. And I celebrated with everyone. You’d think I was retiring early after winning the lottery (because I promise I’d come back to the office for that and wouldn’t move to the beach immediately with my middle finger in the air).

I was like the Oprah of Divorce cake, “And YOU get a slice! And YOU get a slice! And YOU, never seen you before but YOU get a slice!” It was over. What began with such promise and hope had ended with no more feelings. I had no more hate for him. I had no more love for him. I was blessed with a beautiful daughter from that wretched union. I got the best of him. And now I’m still celebrating. I’m celebrating my freedom, my happiness, my self-esteem, my family that I so desperately wanted.

So, is divorce something to celebrate? No. It isn’t. But when your life is stolen from you and you get it back, THAT’S worth celebrating.

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The Best Thing You Can Do For Your Marriage

beach pic

Isn’t it wonderful to start the day with a warm, relaxing bath? The calmness, the quiet… the realization as I reach for the soap that I left it in the separate standup shower… I wonder if anyone would notice if I use the random bottle of conditioner from five years ago as soap…

Anyway, back to why we’re here:

I’m convinced that this summer my husband and I discovered the #1, hands-down BEST thing you can do for your marriage. And it only took us five and a half years. {To be so book smart (or, in my case, pop culture trivia smart) sometimes we’re a little socially slow.}

In the past, we thought we were nurturing our relationship as long as we spent a night or two away. Away as in 20 miles away. We would go “away” maybe twice a year if we were lucky.

Get to the destination around 4 or 5 o’clock, have a nice dinner, go back to our expensive hotel, and wake up the next morning with the TV still on, realizing we fell asleep while trying to catch up on a little Grim. Then we’d laugh about how lame we are that we fell asleep before 9 pm, pack up our- wait, no need to pack what we didn’t unpack, get in the car and go home, maybe picking up breakfast on our way.

That was the extent of our “us” time.

Then it all changed… This year my husband had a conference to go to. He could choose between Sandestin, FL or San Diego (which, apparently, does NOT mean “a whale’s vagina”). He got an idea… he said, “Let’s see if someone can keep the kids and take the trip together!” {which means Florida because he doesn’t like to fly} I said “OK!” Then I said, “I can’t leave the kids for FIVE DAYS!” Then I said, “But I would love to drink at the beach all day without having to hose sand out of Roman’s butt crack or worry about Bella flinging sand in a stranger’s eyes as she Baywatch runs through everyone’s towels with no concern about anyone else around.” Then I cried a little. Then I picked them up from day care and quickly packed my bag. A month in advance.

The anticipation of the trip gave me as a mom hope and excitement. I had more patience. My perspective changed. Work was manageable, home was manageable. I had something to look forward to.

E leaving for beach

Normally, I’d dread spending 6 hours in a car. This trip was FUN! We stopped when we wanted to, where we wanted to. We had no one to worry about but ourselves. We sang at the top of our lungs. Needless to say, we’re super cool.

first beach view

Once there, we enjoyed EACH OTHER. Even the room smelling like shat didn’t keep us down! For reals, it smelled like someone took an actual shat in our room. We could have gone back to the lobby and asked for another room. But we were tired and just wanted to get dinner. Instead, we decided to open the drapes in the master bedroom to get some light and air in. That’s when we realized that being on the second floor means you’re eye-level with pool goers. Normally, I would have marched myself to the lobby and DEMANDED that if there were another room available maybe we might like to perhaps switch. Instead, we laughed about it and left to get dinner. When we came back 3 hours and several drinks later, we didn’t even notice the smell!

We were able to relax and have fun and DO NOTHING. We remembered that we actually like each other. It wasn’t life on autopilot simply going through the motions to get through the day and get the kids to bed so we could go to sleep. We laughed mockingly at other parents who had to drag their entire houses to the beach while we clinked our Yeti cups together and chugged our alcohol.

e and r beach pic

My husband and I spent just enough time away that we reconnected and at the end, we were ready to get back to our babies. And we came away with memories and inside jokes and experiences that we have together. And if you’re ever in Sandestin, go to Marlin’s and ask for Pitman. He’s an amazing photographer and an avid Dixie Chicks fan.

rick and e at dinner

 

 

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Roman Is 4

Roman then and now

Ugh.  It happened.  My precious, 9 pound, unifying gift from God has become a little boy.  A full-speed-ahead locomotive that plows into life no matter what is coming at him.

When I found out I was going to have another baby almost five years ago I was a little unsure of it all.  I wasn’t married.  I had been dating the hot guy in scrubs from Starbucks for several months at that point.  A rekindled romance from a year prior.

After my first marriage I was in no hurry.  Actually, I was fine to never marry again.  What’s the point… they all end badly anyway.

{I was so optimistic in my early years.}

I had a happy, healthy two-year-old and thought my life was full and complete.  It was her and me.  What else did I need?

{Don’t answer that… we’re about to find out.}

God knew.  He had great plans for this big little baby.

I began to see that not all guys leave.  Some actually stay.  Even when they discover your flaws.  And some guys will even happily raise babies they didn’t biologically help create.  This rare species of man is AMAZING.  I have one.  His name is Rick.  And he’s really cute.

Before he was even born, I saw Roman bringing Bella, the hubs, and me closer every day.  We had good days and bad while trying to come together as a family but we were, indeed, a family.

For the first 2 years of her little life, my daughter didn’t have anyone to call dad.  She didn’t have anyone to come to Daddy-Daughter day at daycare or take her on a daddy-daughter date.  When it was time for parents to come to the school for a show or a special day, it was just me.

The first time she called my hubs “Daddy” she wouldn’t stop.  She would come up with reasons to say his name so she could say “Daddy” and have someone respond.  I had no idea she needed it THAT badly.

I gained an extra 200 pounds on March 5th, 2011 when I married who turned out to be the love of my life.

Then, on June 20th we welcomed Roman into the world.

He emerged the size of a linebacker.  He was 2 weeks early and weighed 9 pounds.  I kind of expected him to stand up, throw me a peace sign, and say, “Hey Moms, I’m gonna go hang with tha guys for the night.  Be back later.  Hey, thanks for that birth thing you just did.”

{My doctor still apologizes for not giving me a C-section…}

He could hold his head up, he loved to snuggle, and (I would find out that first night) hated to sleep.  I was IN LOVE!

I look at him now and still see my little man-baby.

As soon as I saw him for the first time I instantly couldn’t remember the world without him.  We were OFFICIALLY a family of four.  Bella now had a little brother to go with her new dad.  I had a son who would forever connect me to my new husband.  She and I had family I didn’t realize we needed.  All thanks to:

scuba roman

Roman.

A strong name for a strong little man.  It fits him perfectly.

He is strong-willed and impulsive and he loves chocolate almond milk.  He is sensitive and loving and he loves his basketball shoes.  He wants to be Batman, Superman, Captain America, and Spiderman depending on the day you ask him.  But he ALWAYS wants to be Slash.

He is rough and physical and loves all things sports or Guns N Roses.

He has the most AMAZING blue eyes that melt my heart every time I see them.  His kisses taste like sugar and his hair is so soft and blonde.  When he wraps his little arms around my neck and whispers, “I love you, Mommy” he could ask me for a dinosaur and I would get one for him.

The thought of one day having to relinquish my place in his life to someone else BREAKS ME!!!!!!!!!!!  But, I also don’t want to create a “Norman Bates” so I’m working on that.

Every time I look at my widdle bubby I see all the life lessons he has taught me in his short little 4 years.

Life is unexpected.

Sometimes doing things the “right” way leaves you broken and hurt.  Conversely, sometimes doing things the “wrong” way gets you exactly what you need.

Never, ever judge a pregnant woman who is not wearing a wedding ring.  She may be loved more than the one who has a huge rock on her hand.

We don’t know what we need.  But God does.

My heart will forever belong to a tiny little man who likes to run around in his batman underwear.

Mommy loves you, Roman.  Thank you for my family.

Rick Roman and Bella

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Wasted Day

I get so excited when I have the rare day off that happens to be a company holiday (meaning I don’t have to use a precious vacation day) AND the kids have school because it means I get the day ALL TO MYSELF!  But then I get so overwhelmed with all I WANT and COULD do that I end up running around in circles like a cray-cray dog and at the end of the day I’m exhausted and have wasted a perfectly great day off.

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Slight tangent alert:

It’s super awkward to sit down at the only available table at Starbucks and realize you’ve sat next to a table of men who are holding a marriage intervention with one of the guys at the table.  And that guy is talking REALLY LOUDLY about all his issues.  It is vurry entertaining, though…

 

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Never Say Never

Sounds like a James Bond movie, doesn’t it? Brilliant.

Almost every time I’ve declared, “NEVER!” I think God has smiled a little inside, grabbed some popcorn, and settled in to watch the critically acclaimed miniseries, “NEVER! Well… maybe… Ok, FINE!” starring ME.

First up, we have babies. Nope. I’m not gonna have any. Too much responsibility! Plus, I don’t know what to do with a BAY-BEE!

So God gave me this one:

silly bella

Then he gave me this one:

FullSizeRender

Turns out, I’m the BEST MOMMY EVER! My kiddies both said so… soooo that means it’s true.

Ewe. I’ll never shop at a “MOM” store. Blah. Oh! Look at that cute dress at New York and Company! Hey! Look at the new shirt I got at CATO! I’m so stylish. Funny, God. Vurry funny.

Um, no, I don’t do oysters. That I still won’t do. Yuck, those nasty loogie-textured things…

Mini-van? Nope. I’ve held out by getting a Yukon instead. Aka, the mini-van for moms who refuse to get a mini-van. Does that count?

Oh, to drink? “I’ll just have water with lemon” I’ll never say! Who orders “WATER”??? I’d never order gross water! Well, now I do. Judge away, younger me!

Next up, we have divorce.

Awe, bless her heart. She’s divorced… that’ll never happen to me. I’m going to read all the articles and pray really hard and nope, no d-i-v-o-r-c-e for me!

Turns out, if you marry the first guy I married you’ll end up divorced. Just ask his newest ex-wife.

Which brings me to my next “NEVER! Becomes FINE!” moment. When my ex-whatever-he-was and I divorced, it was mainly because he “fell in love” with someone else. While I was pregnant. And my dad had a stroke that left him permanently disabled. And my dog died on my birthday. And I was 3,000 miles away from home. Cue anything by Willie Nelson.

At first I didn’t blame the “other woman”. But… then I realized she knew about all of it. She knew he was married. She knew I was pregnant. Needless to say, I wasn’t her biggest fan. I would NEVER forgive her for her part. Ever. I didn’t want to speak to her, I didn’t want her to be near my baby, I didn’t care to ever hear her name (which, unfortunately for me at the time, is a very popular name).

Fast forward 6 years, they are married with one baby and one on the way. Then he takes me to court so that he can exercise his visitation in Seattle. Awe, that’s cute, right?? A military guy who just wants to see his daughter. UH-UH. He talked to my daughter maaaaybe once a month on the phone and miiiiight see her once every 18 months. I was desperate. And I was convinced that there was something motivating this and it wasn’t “fatherly love”.

One lovely day, a dear, dear friend divulged some interesting information: there might be trouble in paradise and she might HATE him.

Ugh. What do I do? She might be the only person who can help make sure he can’t take my baby… I prayed… and thought about it… and crossed my fingers… and reached out to her.

Let’s just say she was more than willing to help me. My bet paid off. It was risky. She could have double-crossed me. It could have backfired. Are we best friends? No. But before I picked up the phone I’d already forgiven her for whatever part she had. FYI, if it weren’t her it would have been someone else (Seriously. I can rattle off ten names right now).

After the divorce that left me bitter, angry, and hollow do you think I swore off marriage??? YOU BET I DID!!!!!!! Am I now married to my best friend? You bet I am. God, that’s some sense of humor you have! But if this guy is the punch line, I’ll be the joke 😉

I’ll never be one of those weirdos that eats organic. Such a load of crap. I’ll never like spinach. I’m not a runner… I’ll never run a 5k. I’ll never wear mom jeans (in my defense, I didn’t realize they were mom jeans until I got home from the store. It was quite unfortunate). I’ll never clean! (I said that one just the other day. Then I thought a friend was coming over and I was embarrassed that she might see my house in that state.) All things I’ve said and all things that have turned out happening…

So just for shats and giggles:

I’ll NEVER be rich! I’ll NEVER have a huge beach house! Heh… 🙂

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Meh-widge

In just 2 days my hunky hubs and I will celebrate our wedding anniversary.  This is huge.  Each year that I realize 1) our anniversary is approaching and 2) we’re still married, I feel accomplished.  It’s comparable to the feeling I had when each of my kids turned one.

{YAY!!!  I sustained a human life for a year!!!  Only now it’s, “Yay!!!  We sustained a human marriage another year!  I still love and even LIKE my husband and he must still like me because he hasn’t served me with divorce papers or tried to poison me!!! That I know of”}

After my first marriage I swore I would NEVER get married again.  Ever.  I was better off alone, no drama, no heartbreak.  Marriage just complicates things.  The realization that marriages end sometimes even when you give it your all was too sobering for me to process.

But then, one day I was running late for work.  I stopped in for my morning Starbucks (cuz I’m never too late for that).  And there stood a handsome man in scrubs with an amazing smile and stunning blue eyes.

You know that feeling in high school when you see a hot guy who’s way cooler than you and your knees buckle?  Yeah, that happened.

I went to work that morning and told my boss about my encounter.  He wrote my cell # on a napkin and put it in my pocket.  He said, “Be late as much as you need.  But keep that napkin with you and give it to him next time.”

First off, that man was one of my favorite bosses EVER.  Secondly, I don’t think he realized “as much as you need” meant 6 months of me being late to work.  And I lost that napkin probably 2 weeks in.

Fast forward two years and we were flying to Vegas to get hitched.

{FYI, if you’re in a great mood, about to do something BIG, and are super excited, DON’T WATCH BLACK SWAN!  We learned this lesson on the flight over.  Hashtag buzz kill.}

I felt like this time I had a more realistic expectation of marriage.  And, my poor hubs… I didn’t just have “a little baggage” that I dragged into our union.  I had

self-catering-breaks.com
self-catering-breaks.com

But it’s ok.  He had a few suitcases, too.

Our marriage hasn’t always been all roses, unicorns, and rainbows.  There are moments when our marriage feels like I’m standing in the middle of a lucha libre fight.

{What tha face is about to happen?  Why are those little people dressed like koala bears walking angrily toward me?}

Sometimes it’s like a weird dream involving leprechauns and Oompa Loompas.

{Should I be scared or in awe?  I’m not sure what this is… is this a black pot full of cereal???}

The first year was a tough adjustment.  He went from bachelor to insta-family.  And I had to remember that I now had a partner.

He and I didn’t have the luxury of living in a honeymoon bubble for the first year.  (I’ve actually never had that luxury but I’ve been told that it exists.  Guess it’s kind of like aliens…or Big Foot.) It was like we fast-forwarded to year 10 and had to figure out the rest as we went along.

But then there are the moments that feel like I’m swimming in dark chocolate while covered in diamonds, receiving the most comforting angel hug while listening to Celine Dion sing the phone book.

{Kids, phone books are biiiiig books with phone numbers in them that used to be popular when I was a young whippersnapper.  Mostly it was used by me for comic relief, “Short, Peter!!!!!  AHAHAHAHA!”}

Each year we seem to gain a greater understanding of what we can do to love the other better.

Each year poses new obstacles for us to face.  It’s nice to have someone who grabs my hand and goes over it with me instead of someone who yells “sucka!”, runs away, and leaves me standing there with my thumb up my rear.

Not gonna lie, with every obstacle there is a split second where I still expect to be let down.  I kind of hold out my hand and close my eyes really tight not knowing if he will have grabbed my hand when I open my eyes.  But he always does.  And usually complains that my hands are clammy.  And those are the moments I know I’m where I should be.

We haven’t yet been married for 40 years so I’m not writing this post to grace you with my words of marital wisdom.  That would probably result in a sharp spike in divorce rates.  (Which would insinuate that I have a large cult-like blog following.)

But I can say I’ve learned some things. Marriage isn’t a fairy tale.  It’s a journey that takes 100% commitment from each partner every minute of every day.  It’s emotionally dangerous. To make it work you have to rely on another person and assume they want to be there, too.  You have to be vulnerable.  You have to let another person in on your cray-cray.  AND, you have to experience someone else’s cray-cray.

{Anything crazy can and will be used against you in a court of law.}

But when it works, when you find someone who wakes up next to you and you know with 100% certainty that today this person will be my teammate, that’s a pretty big deal.

{And then they fart.}

With each slap on the arse I’m reminded that he loves me.  And with each burned, inedible dinner I make I hope he sees I’m trying to show him how much I love him, too.

To all of my friends who are separated or divorced, don’t mistake marriage for happiness.  Experience living life for yourself and see where it goes.  Also, never say never.  You just may end up with a hottie hubs, a daughter who adores him, and a son who just wants to be called Slash.

To all of my friends who are married and glad you did it, fist bump.

And to my partner in crime, I’m glad I’m in cahoots with you.

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