13 Things I Know After 13 Years of Marriage.
10.29.05. Clad in Monique Lhuillier (the Swan Lake dress, which was the first one I tried on and next seen on a limited edition Barbie) wrapped in a giant purple sash, surrounded by 300 people and like 300,000 flowers at Cipriani Wall Street in NYC, Brian and I got married. We were SO young, and had only been together for like 2 years (he broke up with me twice, but that is a tale for another time), and, looking back on it, so clueless about life and being adults and, well, everything. But, in marriage as in business, I do believe that being clueless is the first step in doing anything major. Because if you know too much, you think too much…
Here we are- 13 years, 2 kids and 1 dog later. There have been amazing days, there have been crappy days, but most of the days have been just that: days. Here are some things I have learned- about myself, about my husband, and about married life- 4,745 days in as Mrs. Brian Falik.
1- Timing is everything. Learning when to bite my tongue and table a topic for an hour, a week, even a year if needed, makes the medicine go down easier. For example, passive-aggressively reminding Brian that he actually has a hamper in his closet in which he can throw dirty clothes is best not shared the second he walks in from a rough day at work.
2- It is important to remember that you and your spouse did not grow up in the same family (obviously, I mean- that would be super weird.) So with parenting stuff- which to be honest is the root of almost 90% of our arguments- we each come to the table with a sh#tload of baggage that the other person can never REALLY understand. It is oddly easy to forget that, but I shouldn’t.
3- Going out is fun, but staying home is more fun.
4- My husband has a MUCH better eye for fashion and interior design than I do. It’s true.
5- When I leave dishes piled up in the sink, it annoys him. And it really does only take like 4 extra seconds to rinse and put them in the dishwasher. So I may as well.
6- I am terrible at booking travel- and most times that I am the one to book the flights or a hotel for a family trip, we end up in the back row of the plane and at a potentially bed-bug infested hotel. Brian knows this, and even on the few occasions I have done good in this department, he always assumes the other shoe is about to drop. Which inevitably pisses me off. Especially when the other shoe inevitably does drop and we discover that I booked our return tickets for the wrong day or something and have to admit that he was right. And incur like $1000 of change fees.
7- Marry someone who doesn’t make you feel guilty about things that they easily could make you feel guilty about. Like, the fact that even though I should have gone to the grocery this morning since we are out of eggs and like everything else, instead, I went to SoulCycle. Or, the 20 Amazon and Shopbop boxes that show up at the front door each week (we got the Nest doorbell camera thingie, so no delivery is sacred anymore!). Yes, these are little things- but this is a quality that trickles up to the big things too.
8- Always keep waters and Diet Cokes in the fridge. I don’t drink Diet Coke, and I like my water room temperature- but Brian likes to open the fridge and see it stocked. So, I try and remember to keep it that way.
9- Take a step back every now and then and see your husband the way other people see him. Because while I can succumb to a jaded view of who Brian is (living with someone for 13+ years can do that to ya!), when I look at him through the lens that his colleagues and friends do, I remember lots of the incredible qualities he has which, as a wife, are weirdly simple to forget.
10- Keep pictures from your wedding prominently displayed around your house. They are good reminders of how this crazy life all began- and also give your kids the opportunity to see how young you once were, and remark in a way only a child can just how old and “crinkly” you look now.
11- There will be times when you literally have no idea how anyone can be in love with you. Be it the morning after a knock-down-drag-out fight that you realize was over something stupid and totally your fault , or when you accidentally have the selfie-facing camera setting on and get a VERY unflattering glimpse at yourself, or a million other things. At these times, instead of assuming your husband is crazy and treating him as such (thus digging yourself into an even deeper hole of self-destructive thinking), shift your thinking and just be grateful.
12- Learn about the thing your significant other loves most in such a way that you come to love it too. For me, it is football. I had never been such a huge fan of the sport- but upon realizing that Brian’s love of college football (and specifically, the Texas Longhorns) was going to be the driving force behind the plans we made (or didn’t make) every Saturday between September and November for the foreseeable future, I dove in and learned the game. And now, not only do I understand football, I LOVE IT.
13- Marriage is WORK. Scary work. Because making it work forces you to deal with parts of yourself that, once you actually take a look at them, may suck. And upon realizing that, you have 2 choices- change, or don’t. And that choice, while seemingly simple, is everything.
So, there ya have it- 13 random little things that I have come to realize as I reflect on married life thus far. And while Brian doesn’t always read my blog (and yes, I am okay with that!) I plan on sending him a link to this one, in hopes he will grant me a pass on the physical anniversary card that I have yet to purchase this year… Even though somehow, with a demanding work schedule and 3 crazy girls to deal with (Lex, Goldie and of course, me), Brian had a card and assortment of incredibly thoughtful, generous and perfectly wrapped gifts ready and waiting for me this morning. Oopsies :) Brian- if you are reading this, scroll up and review #7 again, ‘kay? XO