Hooray, you’re here again. So, my baby sister got married a couple of weeks ago. It was beautiful and sweet, and all things you imagine marriage to be. But it got me thinking. Dating VS Marriage. Total. Game. Changer. Now, I’m no Dear Abby, but my husband and I have been together ten years now. Only three of which consist of “actual” marriage, but I feel like after living with someone for ten years, a piece of paper makes no difference. I’m not a relationship expert, but I am an experienced member of a relationship. So, whatever. Let’s do this.
Ah, I remember so well meeting the man I would eventually marry. I was young, and dare I say, much hotter than I am now. He was all quiet in a sexy, mysterious way and such a super duper gentleman. We would talk for hours about nothing and he would laugh his face off at all my stupid jokes. I was so, so funny back then, folks. Which brings me to my first point.
The way you feel about each other WILL change.
Now, I’m not saying that to be Debbie Downer, but listen. When you are with someone long enough, and you spend enough time with them, suddenly things you found so charming, well, aren’t.
For instance, my husband’s quiet demeanor was so alluring. Until we had our first argument and he sat there staring into nothing. Saying nothing. I’m a “need to talk it out kind of girl”. He’s a “maybe if I just don’t look at her, she’ll go away” kind of guy. Not. Cute.
And on the flip side, the sense of humor I thought I had honed over the years, quickly wore off with the hubs. What started as giggling like a school girl and covering his mouth to contain it, slowly turned into a half a smirk and an eye roll. Which left me shaken and questioning just how funny I really am. Because I’m funny. Dammit.
But of course it goes with out saying the feelings will change in good ways as well. My husband and I have almost morphed into the same person on a lot of issues. Things that we would have completely disagreed on in the beginning of our relationship have become things we snort at and pick apart together. Or I may have just brainwashed him to agree with me to avoid hours of long drawn out conversation. Either way. Harmonious.
On to the next point. Which some of you may completely disagree with. And if you do, just know, you haven’t gotten there yet.
When we were dating, I remember primping daily like I was going to prom. Hours of hair straightening, make up application, picking out the perfect outfit. Exhausting. As I became more comfortable (read: hugely pregnant with Slugger) I realized that my hubs loved me regardless of how presentable I was.
Be careful. This is a slippery slope and once you have kids, it becomes a down right avalanche. I’m only semi ashamed to admit that my daily regiment takes all of five minutes to throw on whatever clean clothes I find in order to get the little monsters looking presentable. Doing my hair? More like “Does the messy bun I slept in look ok, or should I redo it?” Make up? Chapstick counts, right? Shaving…happens like once a year. My yearly shave. I can barely take a pee with out someone asking me ten thousand questions, so showering long enough to rid my body of any “unwanted” hair is totally out. Deal with it. In my defense, there are like, a million memes on the internet talking about how sexy yoga pants are. Seriously, look it up. So, score one for me. I own A LOT of yoga pants.
The caveat to this ladies, is that men have some magical gift bestowed upon them. Spoiler alert, the gift is you. While you are catering to the tiny monsters you have created, he has time to groom and primp like the old days. Which let’s be honest, consists of maybe a shave and some tooth brushing. Thankfully, I’ve been blessed with a gift as well, a husband with enough manners not to burp and fart everywhere. Thank you, honey.
While dating, you put your best self out there. No one wants to see the worst of a person and then commit to be with that mess. Nope. Living together, married or not, definitely sheds light on all the, um, dirt. Somehow cleaning each other’s messes is not enjoyable. GO FIGURE, RIGHT? But it comes with the territory.
The beauty of dating is, at the end of the day, you both go back to your respective places and subsequently, respective messes. Your boyfriend doesn’t know how to use a hamper? Not your problem. Your craft project took over a whole room and has left no where for anyone to sit down? He doesn’t have to know about it.
But fast forward to living in the same dwelling, and things get real. You can hide NOTHING. You share a space and care for that space together and suddenly you have no idea to live. None. Like, for instance, what to you mean I can’t just have various pieces of paper covering an entire table surface? I was working on something! Who moved the underwear I left on the floor? That was clean! Why aren’t my dirty clothes getting washed? I left them over here, on the floor, on the side of the bed, which is clearly my dirty clothes pile! The outrage!
Things get hard, people. They get dirty.
Dating is fun. It’s great to look back on the times when everything was fresh and new. Every quirk was endearing and every conversation stimulating. But there’s something to be said about coming home everyday to the familiar, the comfortable. About knowing where you stand, and who you stand with. Marriage isn’t so bad. It’s actually pretty great.