Thursday, May 28, 2015

Big Deal

I’m not big on important dates and celebrations.  It’s not because I’m a big old grouch.  Okay.  I’m sort of curmudgeonly.

Life moves quickly; marking it in big ways is a relentless endeavor.  Plus, you run the risk of missing something mundane that becomes extraordinary in some way, just because your energy is focused on making the special more special.

What I’m saying is: Heads up, people.  Time is fleeting.  Seize the moment.  There’s a birthday every day.  Life is measured by little deviations as well as broad milestones like turning thirty or being married for thirty years.  I like to look back at the eccentricities, not the same exact party every ten years.

Birthdays, anniversaries, dates of first meetings, first I love you, first date, graduation, birth of first, second, third child.  What’s the big deal?  Who can remember all those dates?

There was a short period of time this year when I was under the impression that my daughter’s birthday was two days after her actual birthday.  I literally had my daughter’s birthday wrong in my head.  Imagine my surprise and desperation when I realized that I cheated myself two days to make her big day as special as I could, which isn't saying much.  Children are gracious.

Because of my laissez-faire view of celebrations and big events in general, I married a guy to whom dates and events are important and big and special.  He remembers all the details of every big event. 

I don’t know the name of the restaurant we ate at where we got engaged, but he could probably tell you the name, where it was located, and even the name of our waiter.  I can’t tell you what I ate but I’ll bet he can.  I think he said that The Rolling Stones once ate there. 

Some time after our wedding I confessed to a friend that I didn’t remember what day we got engaged.  She barked at me, scolding “ANDREA.  It was New Year’s Eve.”

New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Eve.  We got engaged on New Year’s Eve.  I repeat it in my head like a mantra.  Not instantly recalling these details is embarrassing.

Our engagement is blurry.  I remember wearing a hideous long chocolate brown velvet dress that I hated but it was the only dress I owned.  It was J. Crew.  Or J. Jill.  Awful brown suede slippers to match.  They were almost too small – my toes scrunched in the tips.  I vaguely remember some sort of box.  Was it chocolate?  A ring and a speech.  Applause.  Did I cry?  Did he?

I remember phone calls.  Who did we call?  Parents, probably.  Friends, brothers, aunts, grandparents?  I don’t know.

The Rolling Stones and an ugly brown dress.  These are the details I remember from our engagement.  These are the oddball things I remember in general.

That night was a big deal.  A night that began this life I am living right now.  We took care to nurture our relationship and he took pains to organize this big part of its official start.  I wonder if any of it would have happened if it had been up to me.  I wonder how much I’d remember if it wasn’t for him.

I’m okay that he celebrates for both of us.  I get him a card if I think of it in time.   I feel bad that it involves a herculean effort for me to do much more than this.  I’m the worst.

I’m glad he doesn’t mind.





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This post inspired by:


Mama’s Losin’ It

Prompt #4: Write a blog post inspired by the word: engaged.

22 comments:

  1. You guys sound like a good pair. I am terrible with birthdays and holidays when it comes to Christian. He always seems to get the shaft because "i'm busy" or I just didn't think of anything in time.

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    1. He never lets me forget my celebration lapses, but I think by now he's probably accepted that this is his life.

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  2. You married the perfect man! As far as I'm concerned, as long as at least one of you remembers these dates, you're winning. I'm terrible about these things too and am very grateful to Facebook for reminding me of people's birthdays or I'd be totally lost.

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    1. Thank you, Kathy! I am also grateful for FB reminders. They would be very helpful if they served to help me plan a celebration.

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  3. I am good at remembering people's birthdays but not good at getting my brain in gear to send a card, mostly the same for Christmas. You and your husband sound like you compliment each other very much. Stopping by from Mama Kat's.

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    1. I hope we are a good team! Although he usually gets the short end of the stick. Oh well. I never claimed to have it all together. ;)

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  4. Yesterday was our nine year wedding anniversary and I didn't get him anything.
    He got ME a card and flowers.
    I made him go all over Chicago looking for John Hughes movie location homes OMG I KNOW.
    See?
    WE ARE TWO PEAS IN A POD.

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    1. I think that sounds like the perfect celebration. Are you starting a tour company or something? Because I would totally do that tour.

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  5. OH my goodness, LOOK AT THAT PIC!!! You clean up nice, girl!! SO beautiful!! I just love that you guys have the perfect balance... I'm guessing he falls short on other things that you take over, yes?

    My favorite line: "Plus, you run the risk of missing something mundane that becomes extraordinary in some way, just because your energy is focused on making the special more special." <---- LOVE this.

    Such a great reminder for me... Thank you!!

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    1. Ah, thank you! You are a sweet one. So glad to remind you of the mundane. Wait - that didn't come out right. xoxo

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  6. It's funny because I remember big milestone things better but he remember the little moments better. Things like you said, what restaurant we ate when we did this or the other thing I don't even remember doing at all. Oops.

    However, I'm already thinking about how we can celebrate/honor our 20 years together in November. Maybe I need to focus on the little moments more...

    Also, love that photo of the two of you!!!

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    1. See, I 'think' about doing something to commemorate things, but it never really actually happens. Because 'thinking' and 'doing' are like night and day to me. Can I 'think' of doing something and have someone else do the 'doing'?

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  7. haha..I have no idea what day we got engaged! We had been together for 11 years and were standing in the mall one day and he looked at me and said, so you want to get married. We were standing outside a jewelry store and bought our wedding rings. I didn't actually buy an engagement ring, I am not a big jewelry person and we didn't tell our friends we were even getting married. It was a very small affair, a day just for us and our son (and witnesses of course with their kids). We did tell our families but since they were spread out so far across the country just kept it small as I said.

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    1. See, that's how I like to do things. No planning, no big to-do. Just a normal day made extraordinary. Thank you for sharing that!

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  8. I am the same way. Only I do like big celebrations I just never remember the little moments. My husband always reminds me that today was the first day we kissed some odd years ago and Im like awesome can we go on a date and celebrate it then. ;)

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    1. That is so funny! I have friends like that - anything for a celebration or special date. I'm more like "Hey, it's Tuesday night - let's go eat lobster!"

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  9. ME TOO! But my problem is that Pat is just as bad as me. We both entirely forget our anniversary sometimes. Which is great because I don't feel as guilty, but kind of bad because I also don't get a gift.

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    1. There's always a downside to the easy life. I feel badly when I don't get gifts, too, even though I profess to not "care." Clearly I do. No wonder my husband is confused most of the time.

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  10. My husband is just like you. The man can't even remember his own birthday.

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    1. That's a gift for nonchalance, that right there. :)

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