Through the years, hubs and I have found a rhythm that works for us. So, I am thinking retirement life will be just fine. We have always loved to spend time with each other, and we have also enjoyed doing our own thing. He will work out in his shops or in the yard. I will do a craft project or have lunch with a friend. And, although we have had what could be called the worst shouting matches in our early days, we have always found a way to let off steam, give each other space, and work our way back to each other.
We each have a sense of humor which I don’t think other people realize about us. Or maybe it just shows itself when we are alone in each other’s company. If I am down and out, he will say something that will make me laugh. And if he seems unapproachable, I figure out some quirky thing to say that will lift him out of his doldrums.
Once, around our tenth year of marriage, hubs seemed to be in a constant bad mood, or unhappy about something he wasn’t sharing with me. Being a survivor myself of PTSD from my parent’s arranged marriage, anything but happiness from hubs would aggravate my anxiety. It took many, many years for me to learn that his mood was not about me but about him.
One evening, during that timeframe, I followed him around the house trying to figure out if he was mad at me or what was the matter. Being the shy, introverted guy that he is, I had no idea how very unhappy he was with his job. As I continued to follow him around and ask questions, searching for answers, both of our stress levels rose higher and higher.
Then, out of the blue, hubs looks down, sees my house slippers in a corner of the master bathroom, directly upon entering but tucked up under the cabinet. He says to me, “I wish you would keep your shoes out of my way. They are always in my way.”
I looked down, and for once in my life, I had an answer. I replied, “Well, I didn’t know you could walk into walls.” And I did just that. I walked into the wall, really a corner where the cabinet met up with the wall, repeatedly, like a roomba vacuum cleaner that had gotten caught in an awkward spot.
Hubs stared at me and my silliness. And then we both broke out laughing—hysterically.
And that is how it has pretty much been for us. Something one of us says or does will get the other to smile or laugh. Not always. But usually. And, yes, there has been a time or two that things did not go so well. But we recovered. And we are here. At almost retirement phase. Hubs is out mowing, and I am in typing. Soon, I will join him to pick up the yard, or edge, or blow leaves. And then we will grill. We will sit and enjoy the evening. We will chit-chat and catch up on life. We may even play our favorite tunes.
After thirty-four and a half years of getting to know each other, we are in a good place. I believe that we are meant to be together. There is something about hubs that is the right fit for me. Sure, it can be difficult to communicate at times. He likes to think I can read minds. And I talk so much, at times, that he literally tunes me out – not intentionally, but only because his mind has wandered. So, he misses some important details, lol.
So, what is our secret to so many years together? We love each other. We still like the person we married. We have been through a lot and survived. We have lived single lives during shiftwork years. We have experienced several moves – minor and major ones – that have prepared us for this move right now, the move of all moves, from city life to country life, from working life to retirement life.
Our relationship is a success due to many things. The support of family and friends – when no one knew we needed support. Our willingness to compromise. Our commitment to share in the adventure of marriage together – two lives into one. Through thick or thin, illness or health, wealth or poverty, we have found a rhythm together. We trust that we will be there for each other. We give each other space. We laugh. We love. We share ideas, even if we are afraid the other will reject it. And often, we are pleasantly surprised.
The journey together has brought us to a new place, a new rhythm that is still working itself out. Hubs is still residing in the city. I am already in the country. While he wraps up things there, I prepare for our new life here. Our rhythm is becoming fine-tuned, and I am looking forward to what the rest of life holds in store for us.
And, one thing I know for sure, if we had given up on each other at anytime in the past, we would not be experiencing the love we have for each other today or the amazing life we have built together. May everyone be so blessed.
Weekly blogs on marriage are posted each second Sunday of each month.
Next scheduled topic (third Sunday of the month) will be on fitness, health, and/or well-being.
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Be safe out there and many blessings to you!