Open Mike

I've learned a lot in 11 years of marriage

The one common question for those who know me may be how my wife, Wendy, survived 11 years with me.

Well, somehow she did. This past Monday we celebrated our 11th wedding anniversary. That is a lot of years, folks. Much like a prison sentence without the bars. Just a joke, babe.

Being the type of person that I am, I thought it would be fun to reflect on the past decade-and one year-to see exactly what I have learned about the sanctity of the wonderful bliss we call marriage.

One of the most obvious aspects of marriage that many men don't realize at first is the need to have your own bathroom facilities. For men who have been married many years, you understand what I am saying. For newlyweds, heed my advice about the need for two bathrooms. Because there will come a time in your marriage, men, when the bathroom is no longer yours. The bathroom will be strung with everything from panty hose to curling irons. Wait and see.

Another part of marriage that becomes obvious over time is that as a man/husband, you are never right. Newlywed men, I just want to tell you the sooner you accept this fact the better off you will be. I haven't been right for 10 years now and I have just accepted it. Life is a lot easier that way. Why fight it, when you are wrong anyway?

I have also learned that the only time you really get a decent meal from your significant other is during the first year of marriage. For the most part you eat major grub during the first year, thus expanding the waistline. This is all part of your wife's secret plan to fatten you up like the Thanksgiving turkey. Whether women want to admit it or not, they like to have their men fat. Little, bitty love handles for them to grab.

I have learned that "whatever" is the predominant word in the English language for women. However, I have also learned that women know many other descriptive words to say when you are on their bad side.

The past 11 years has also shown me that you never get to drive anything new. Wendy loves driving the new cars. So, because I care, I don't put up much of a fight. Wendy is generous every once in a while, as she lets me drive to the corner store in the new car.

I have also become comfortable with the little spot that I have on our bed to sleep at night because someone likes to spread out across the bed.

I used to have a different opinion of marriage than I do now. I used to think marriage was the kind of thing where the woman helps bring home the bacon, washes my clothes and cooks my meals. What the hey, I still think that. Just kidding, honey.

In reality, marriage is a partnership. A partnership that I like comparing to rolling dice. Sometimes you just have to roll the dice and see what happens.

Many people make marriage too complicated. Marriage is simply about making the effort and nothing more. The effort to listen, help and give a good hug every once in a while.

Look at me, sounding like Dr. Phil.

A lot of people view an argument in a marriage as something negative. But I have learned that good things can come from an argument. Sometimes you yell at one another, sometimes you throw dish pans. But it doesn't mean you love each other any less. It just means that sometimes stuff happens.

Marriage is much like taking a leap of faith. Sometimes you just don't know what is going to happen, but you go along for the ride, nonetheless. Sometimes the ride is fun, sometimes the ride is bad.

I always think back and take comfort in something a good friend of mine told me on the day that Wendy and I got married. He told us to never forget how we felt on our wedding day.

Sometimes, usually when I am super mad, I forget that feeling, but more often than not I remember the exact feeling I felt on that day, making me feel warm and mushy inside.

So honey, on this day (which was actually this past Monday, but better late than never) I would simply like to tell you I love you.

We are not doing too badly for two people who many didn't think would last 11 months, let alone 11 years!


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