Just like parenthood, marriage is so much harder than I ever imagined, and I know I’m not alone in this experience. It’s a challenge on so many levels, and in some ways it gets easier with time but in many ways it doesn’t. I believe in anagrams, and it feels appropriate that the word “marriage” can be anagrammed as both “area grim” and “rare magi”. However, on this day that marks thirteen years since our wedding, I want to publish two conversations which exemplify my husband’s generosity of spirit.
One of the kids: “What are we having for dinner?”
Alison: “Well, sort of tacos. But I took the breading off the leftover fried chicken and mixed it with the rest of the rotisserie chicken, and it looked like a pound so I added the whole packet of seasoning, but I’m not sure how it’ll turn out.”
Brian: “If it’s terrible, I’ll eat it.”
Context: I’d somehow tweaked a muscle in my back and had been aching all day. After the kids were in bed, he saw me trying to turn my head and rotate my shoulder in an attempt to work the muscle group and release some of the tension. He brought me some Advil and said he thought I should take it. About ten minutes later…
Brian: “Did you take the Advil?”
Brian: “Good. I will bring you wine and seltzer next.”
Alison: “Wow! You’re like a doctor!”
Brian: “Then I’m going to make you popcorn. And after that, I’m going to leave you alone!”
Alison: “Oh my god! You’re actually a love doctor!”
Here’s to all the spouses out there who offer to eat failure food and know when to leave their wives alone. I toast you with wine in one hand, seltzer in the other, and ibuprofen in the bloodstream.
P.S. “Thirteen years” can be anagrammed as “heart serenity”, “share eternity”, “nitrate heresy”, “hysteria enter”, and “shanty retiree”. Naturally.