Wednesday, June 22, 2016

(Still) married with children

Chuck and I celebrated our tenth anniversary last weekend. Ten freaken years. That's a lot of dirty socks under the bed. I mean, love notes on the fridge.


My mother offered to babysit so we could go away for the weekend. Isn't she amazing? Seventy-two and still as sprite as ever. Remind me to send her something.

After belaboring options (could we really fly to Bermuda and leave my mother with three kids? Should we just rent an RV, park behind a gas station and catch up on sleep?), we settled on Salem, Mass., a walkable, low-key, and bewitching—har, har—city.

If you've never been, I can't recommend it enough. We ate a seafood dinner on the water, shopped, drank way too many Moscow Mules, poked around a flea market, stayed in the cozy guest house of the Hawthorne Hotel (the shower was in the closet!)...

... slept late, ate dinner at 11 p.m. (to soak up all those Moscow Mules) and of course, because Chuck is a somewhat retired ghostbuster we went on a Haunted Footsteps Ghost Tour.  It was seriously spooky. And look at what I caught on camera!

Myah, nothing but a cemetery—but it was still spooky. In fact, after Chuck and I sneaked behind that abandoned building in the background to swap spit (thank you, Moscow Mules) and heard twigs cracking underfoot right next to us, we raced back to catch the tour. (Fine, only I raced.) When I told the tour leader about our possible paranormal experience, he congratulated us on possibly having an encounter.

With a skunk.

Love that ghostly wit.

Chuck and I arrived back home in Connecticut refreshed, albeit slightly hungover, and lighter (but not translucent or surrounded by orbs, those are important distinctions). Which brings me to the point of this post. It actually isn't to hawk all things Salem (I'd go back in a heartbeat), but to acknowledge something that, in my opinion, is rarely said: Children can be a marriage killer if you let them.

That might sound harsh, but it needs to be said. If you forget who you are as a person, and you forget who your spouse is as a person, and you forget who you were as a couple—you know, those two crazy kids who once upon a time got horizontal—you can easily slip into the precarious dimension of zombie co-parenting. You know the dimension. The one where you let the day-to-day grind of child responsibility hack away at your souls? Where you take out your grindly frustrations on your partner?

Yes, you can go there—it's kind of impossible not to—but you can't stay there if you want your marriage to make it.

Until last weekend, I'd forgotten how much fun Chuck and I had had before we spawned. We must have logged 10,000 miles walking around cities, arm-in-arm, half in the bag. Those are some of my most favorite memories. And duh, those are the memories that made me say "I do" in the first place.

So yes, happy anniversary Chuck. Our getaway beats the shit out of our third anniversary and its  granny vaginas; our fourth anniversary, when we did something with bananas; our fifth anniversary, when I whittled you gingerbread cookies; and all the other anniversaries I apparently forgot to blog about.

I love you. And yes, if you need to start ghostbusting again you have my blessing.*

* I don't really mean that but in the spirit (HAH!) of this post I thought I should make it look like I'm a supportive spouse.

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