I don't actually have a BFF. There are so many wonderful women that I would call my friends, but I don't have a best one. Is that odd? Or do lots of people not have a best friend? Maybe most women my age confide more in their husbands, or maybe their mothers or sisters? I confide in Chuck about everything, but where do I go when I need feedback about HIM? Well, here. This is it. My Blog Friend Forever.
I'M HERE FOR YOU, SWEETIE.
Chuck and I have been married for three months, and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE him. But I loved him before we were married. Marriage freaks me out and makes me feel unsafe. I have been trying to figure out why, off and on. I actually came home after dropping the kids off this morning and went back to bed for two hours. I call this "returning to my nest". I do it very rarely, but it has happened a couple of times in the last few years. Chuck came and held me for awhile and I told him that I feeling scared about marriage. He doesn't get it. He is happy. We never fight; I make a happy home for him; we have a life full of interesting people and things to do; we have a great sex life. Yes, to all of that. I agree. Yes, yes, yes.
Why, then do I feel sad, worried, whatever this is that I feel?
1. That we never fight could be a pathology. Maybe we are just so conflict-averse that we gloss over things. How will I ever know there is a problem? I used to know there was a problem. Simon got mad.
2. Chuck says that he loves me more as time goes by. But many of the things that I used to take as signs of his love are fading or gone: flirty texts; flowers; lit-up face when I show up; grabby, breathless kisses. So, if those are no longer indicators, what are the new indicators? In my old marriage, the indicators were almost non-existent, so I don't know how married people express love meaningfully after the breathless stage is over. My first marriage had less affection from the start, so there was not much opportunity to sing sappy Neil Diamond / Barbara Streisand songs. PLEASE. NOW IT'S RUNNING THROUGH MY HEAD...How can you miss what you didn't have? But if, later in life, you start getting it? You REALLY don't want to lose it.
3. Maybe what he really loves about me is something that has nothing to do with me. Like I have two kids who fill the house with noise and company. Am I a mid-life crisis? JUST MAKE SURE YOU'RE MORE FUN THAN A SPORTS CAR. KIDDING.
4. My mom and dad split up when my dad met a woman who was "the love of his life". It lasted five years. Then they split up and, after the passage of some more years, he and my mom got back together. What if that ending is going to be my ending, too? What if my sub-conscious has been mirroring my father's narrative and doesn't know when to stop? WHAT?!? YOU ARE NOT THE AGENT OF YOUR OWN DESTINY? A DEAD DAD RULES YOUR DESTINY?
5. Maybe the only reason we are so content together is that we are not trying to merge our money. We have such different spending / saving habits that I want to keep money separate. I suspect I am not supposed to feel that way. LOTS OF COUPLES DO THAT, ESPECIALLY THE SECOND TIME AROUND. NORMAL!
6. I am ridiculously self-conscious. I expend too much effort in trying to anticipate what he wants and needs. Why am I doing that?
7. I don't know how to act in a friction-free situation. I had an MO when I was married to Simon. Avoid conflict. Give this relationship all the effort you can, and don't let fights happen. I don't know how to RELAX in a marriage.
8. Being single felt safe, because I could say things like, "We are both free agents, and we are together because we really like to be." Or, "I am here because Chuck makes me happy. If he stops making me happy, I will leave and do something else." Now, I feel as if any positive motivation to be together is subsumed by our legal obligation to be here. How do I manage that dynamic? IS MARRIAGE THE ONLY OBLIGATION, KATE? LOVE GOES HAND IN HAND WITH OBLIGATION, NO MATTER WHAT.
9. I am scared of change. I want things to be the way they were when we were first together. I felt like I could do no wrong. WHAT!? YOU ARE FORGETTING, HONEY! YOU FELT INSECURE THEN, TOO. REMEMBER HOW YOU TRIED TO BREAK THINGS OFF WITH HIM? HEAR THAT? WILLIE NELSON IS PLAYING ON THE STARBUCK'S MUSAK. THAT IS A SIGN. NOW, GET BACK IN THERE AND KEEP TRYING NOT TO TRY SO HARD