Just so we’re clear, I’m very happy with my marriage. Incredibly happy.
I rarely do ab work in the gym because Penn makes me belly laugh, to the point of belly ache, at least once a day. It’s a great workout. Way better than crunches.
He’s my absolute favorite person, but I forgot our anniversary. Well, I mean, I knew it was coming, but I just … forgot.
Last Friday, we celebrated 17 year of this blessed union. First of all, am I old enough to have been married this long? Seventeen years seems like a whole lot. I sometimes look around at my life and think, “I should really have my act together at this point, right?”
Back to the post: We had been in conversation about our anniversary in the week prior. We looked at the circled day on our calendar and spotted an evening basketball game for our son. Then, in a cruel, just evil, twist he had a game at 7:30 the next morning too. (Youth sports at seven in the morning should be illegal. Thanks for coming to my TED talk.)
Lola had her own sports and commitments we had to navigate so the day looked like a scene from A Beautiful Mind.
We gave each other a kiss and said, “Let’s find another time to celebrate.”
So I didn’t “forget forget.” I was aware it was happening, in general, but on the morning of our actual anniversary, I flaked. I was particularly peeved about the piles of laundry all over our bedroom.
Penn has a pile of “I may wear this again” and a pile of “this is definitely dirty” but neither are near the hamper so I am in a constant game of laundry hopscotch walking through the space.
Before he was officially awake I barked, “For the love. Could you please just put the dirty ones in the hamper and the ‘not clean, but not dirty’ ones at least on the chair and off the floor?”
He looked at me all bleary-eyed and said, “Happy Anniversary, Babe.”
He smiled. We laughed. I made him a cup of coffee and he did the morning school run, like usual.
An hour later, a florist delivered a beautiful arrangement with an adorable note. Of course he ordered flowers.
I was already feeling guilty for my laundry tirade and he had the audacity to have pre-arranged a stunning bouquet? It was a punch to the gut.
Focus On What Matters
Here’s the thing: Penn didn’t dwell on my slip. He gave me a hug, laughed at my lapse, and moved on. I think one of the biggest lessons Penn has taught me is the ability to just .. get over it. He knows how much I love him. He knows I value him as a partner. He doesn’t stew on the things that don’t matter. Our marriage matters. This one moment, on this one day, did not.
On the way home from the basketball game, we played our “first dance” song for the kids. While we were at a stoplight, he lifted my hand and kissed it. Our kids said, “I ship” which, in teen language, means they like us as a couple. We got home and repacked the coolers and prepped the cars to head in two directions for two different early morning sporting events. That’s how we, happily, spent our 17th wedding anniversary. We know this stage in life will go by in a blink. Soon enough they will be driving themselves on weekends and a minute after that, poof, they will leave the nest. Soon enough our calendar will be clear and we will have endless evenings, just the two of us. Soon enough. But for now, we celebrate on bleachers and at stoplights and in quiet moments in between carpools. I am the luckiest.
Happy Anniversary, babe. I can’t wait to celebrate (in three weeks).