What Bill and I looked like and how we lived didn’t seem to matter anymore. The impact was driven home one afternoon when I realized there was nothing of either of us left in the house any more. Our hobbies and interests had been regulated to cardboard boxes and stored in the attic. Our favorite books had been replaced by doctors Spock and Seuss. We didn’t have toys of our own… they had been replaced by head-bumping mobiles and shin-cracking rocking horses. Even our wedding picture had been replaced by a framed naked baby.All the wages from both our paychecks went into one account and we shared. All the daily experiences of our individual jobs were exchanged over dinner and we shared. All the child raising and crud detail – the baton twirling classes, the orthodontist appointments, car pools, shopping and errands – were mine alone.When married couples say “We never argue,” it’s an incomplete sentence. “We never argue in public/in front of the children/during sex,” maybe. But there is something wrong with two people who agree to never disagree.Women generally hang on to their illusions about romance. They want desperately to believe it’s a phase men go through and that one day they will appear at the door with violets out of season, a bottle of wine, and two airline tickets to Paris… That will happen on the day two squirrels sit down at our picnic table feeder and order a corn-on-the-cob daiquiri.
There are no marriage manuals. It’s just as well. If there were, no one would get married. It would be like reading a book on how babies are born. They both sound worse than they are. There are no guarantees that marriage will work when you get it home. There are no exchanges or credits or returns. No life-time batteries. It’s a high-risk profession.
When I was a teenager I read several Erma Bombeck books that my mom had checked out of the library. They were hysterical. Even as a teenager, the honesty and humor of everyday life was not lost on me.
My most recent book to read was A Marriage Made in Heaven: Or Too Tired for an Affair and was full of gems on getting married, wading through the waters of being a wife and a mother, joining the workforce, becoming super mom, and growing old with your mate.
Excerpts from the book: