I have a WIP that will never turn into an FO. At least I hope not. I’ve been married for 6 years today.
Michael and I met in college when I was 17. He was 19. We were on St. George Island in Florida on a beach weekend organized by my campus church. Michael asked to sit next to me every chance he got, and before the whole thing was over, he asked if he could kiss me. We’ve been together ever since.
A marriage is not an event that you attend and then never think about again. It’s a constant negotiation. It’s caring for the other person when he/she needs you. It’s compromise. It’s trust. It’s understanding.
I won’t deny that our relationship has had it’s tough points. Before and after the wedding, Michael and I have had times we just wanted out. At first we didn’t agree on the big things like religion, kids, the role of our parents in our relationship, etc. I actually told Michael in the first week we were dating that I didn’t think that our relationship would work out because of those things. He wanted to stay together because he thought I would change my mind as time wore on.
Eventually we had to confront each of those big issues. These battles were not pretty, to put it mildly. Over time though, we grew together in our beliefs and goals (or more honestly, Michael adopted my positions – I knew what I wanted and he was still figuring it out). It took 4 (long) years of dating before we made the union legal.
Michael and I still work at this whole marriage thing. The fights are smaller now (generally) and they are over mostly inconsequential things. We are getting better at reading each other’s needs, whether they are expressed or not. Every day we become more and more part of the other person. I think that we share a brain currently.
Michael helps me raise all the kittens and our big cats (can you believe he didn’t like cats before me?). He provides income for our family. He loves me even when I am pretty sure the rest of the world wishes I didn’t exist. He even supports my yarn habit!
Michael has learned that the biggest way I express love is with handmade gifts. He paid attention to what I said was my favorite yarn, went to the yarn store, purchased said yarn, asked my knitting friends to teach him how to knit, then knit me a scarf. What’s more, he knit it mostly in public because he didn’t want me to see him doing it. He knit at a football game so that he could get it done in time for our anniversary despite the heckling – from a woman, no less. (This is why I do not like football – the fans are often jerks.)
Many old couples tell us that they think we will be together forever. There is a woman I know who talks about how she can always see how much Michael loves me. Quite a few of my friends think that we have a perfect relationship (that doesn’t exist, for the record).
I am grateful to have someone in my life who likes me for who I am – farts and all. Sure, he’s a project (aren’t all husbands?), but he’s fun to work on – may he always be my WIP.