Pick Your Wife's 'Porn Name' Wisely

May 8, 2004 is a day that will live in infamy. Four years ago, I had what some friends still refer to as my ‘moment of clarity’ (others refer to it as the ‘moment I was placed in shackles’). My idyllic, completely libertarian free-spirited lifestyle came to an end with one ‘I do’ and a gathering of family and friends at the pyramids of the Muttart Conservatory in Edmonton.

Four years in and here’s the report I promised to all of my still-single friends out there. My friends, the only way to describe married life post-newlywed stage is: controlled and comfortable chaos. Once you shed the ‘newlywed eyes’ and see your Mate for Life for the first time for who and what they really are – human! – you reach a make or break point in your relationship.

For the record, mine was the first time a certain bride did something that chased both of us out of the room. Independent Leigh would have thought of a reason to leave the premises – I have to get up in the morning…Really, I mean it…- and gotten out of there faster than he would have tossed the phone number out the window.

Married Leigh, on the other hand, sees the opportunity to start a competition where, as the daughters have put it on many occasions, WE ALL LOSE. I should note that they are developing into good players in their own right when it comes to that certain game.

What cannot be easily described here is that unspoken feeling that she has your back and you have hers, no matter what. Through all of the crap that life throws at you from now until the end, you have a reliable and completely trustworthy partner at your side. You give to the other person without thinking because it’s what you do in a marriage. You have someone who takes you for all of your faults and still chooses to stay with you.

Hair disappearing from where it’s supposed to be and appearing where it has no business being, the once-unthinkable belly arriving overnight, the middle-of-the-night-while-sleeping arm swing on your mate’s forehead, - she takes it all in stride and still loves you.

That right there is the secret my friends, the clue to what differentiates a marriage that is for life and a marriage that is destined to fail: the couple settles into a comfy place where specific roles are filled. The wife accepts the husband for all of his faults, while the husband spends his years befuddled as to why she hasn’t chucked him out yet (but tries not to screw up a good thing).

I’ll leave you with one word of warning. The ‘unconditional love’ thing is good, but don’t make it a habit of testing it. It turns out, my suggestion that Eyeful Towers would have made a good ‘Porn name’ for my wife was, in fact, incorrect.

There goes my new barbeque.

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His Name Was Steven