The Top Five Things I’ve Learned Since We Got Married (A Countdown)

5. Sign out. Log off. Switch user. Whatever applies. Not because J will change my status or make me a 53-year-old male from Switzerland, but because it annoys him to have to go behind me and sign out of everything. When I stop to think about it, I can understand. Email, Facebook, Pandora, Amazon, eBay… the list goes on. All those things we still have separate accounts for, and all those years I went without sharing a computer have led to a lot of signing out on J’s end. I’ve been working on this. He hasn’t said anything about it lately… I don’t know if it’s because I’m doing better, or because he’s just given up.

4. Cleaning is now non-optional, and hair removal is essential. I never liked cleaning, and to be honest, this was the area that terrified me the most about getting married. I knew J liked things clean… as a bachelor, he still mopped his kitchen floor on a regular basis. He had told me, before we ever even got engaged, “if we get married, the bathrooms have to stay clean.” Yikes. I tend to put things like that off. Not that I can handle gross conditions (except in the case of the bathroom I used for my first year at college, but that was a very special case), but I tended to wait longer than I maybe should have when it came to cleaning.
All that has changed, I am proud to say. I am now an active cleaner. Working at a hotel as a maid has helped this… first, it has turned me into the fastest, yet most thorough, bathroom cleaner of all time. And second, it has opened my eyes to just how gross people can be (during just one overnight stay, too!), and has spurred me on to prevent us from ever, ever being like that.
Part of being this new, clean person is keeping track of where my hair goes. J’s hair phobia is intense, much like my toenail phobia. I make sure to clean out the drain in the bathtub. I do not keep my hairbrush at the bathroom sink… beside his toothbrush! I clean out my hairbrush regularly. In return, I simply ask that he trim his toenails into the trashcan.

3. Bedtime is not talk time. I am still struggling to get past the estrogen-induced “slumber party” mentality that arises when more than one person is in the bedroom at night. At night, you are supposed to talk. For a long time. And you laugh, and tell stories, and goof off, and have a general good ol’ time. Then you transition into the deep “this is what I’m feeling” conversations and you tell all your secrets and hopes and dreams. Then, when it is far past the time you should have gone to bed, you turn off the lights… but that still doesn’t mean you go to sleep right away.
Turns out, J doesn’t view bedtime as slumber party time. He views it as… well, bedtime! It was a shock to me the first time he addressed it. I was laying there, chattering on about what I had done that day and how it made me feel and what I was looking forward to the next day, when he rolled over and simply said, “I am going to sleep now.” His tone, however, said much more. And that’s when the realization hit me that, in his opinion, I wasn’t supposed to be talking at that point in time.
But, I thought, if we don’t talk at night, when do we talk about the important things?? I asked him. He said, “during the day!” Hmm.
Turns out, dinner is talk time. Riding in the car is talk time. Taking a walk in the evenings can be talk time.
But bedtime… bedtime is not talk time. I still have trouble remembering. Sometimes I have to lay there with my hand over my mouth to keep words from bursting out. Usually, that doesn’t even work.

2. Compromise is important. Sometimes, there just IS no agreeing. It’s simply a fact. There are a few times when we’ve encountered this. J believes the salt & pepper shakers should stay on the dining room table at all times. Having them on the table at all times drives me nuts. There is only one thing that belongs there: my candle. Spices stay in the spice cabinet. So, they stay there, but I have to, have to remember to have them out and on the table for every meal before J sits down in his seat. Otherwise he tries to keep them on the table after the meal, and it’s a problem.
In October of last year, J bought a 2012 calendar. It has pictures of the Northern Lights on it. He was really excited about it.The first of this year, I bought a 2012 calendar. It was at Target, on clearance for forty cents. It is SO CUTE and deserves a place of honor.
What a surprise when we both brought our calendars out and headed for the same spot in the kitchen with them! I hung mine up first. J moved mine to a secondary nail and hung his on top of mine. I moved mine on top of his. He told me to take mine to my office. I said I already had one there, he should take his to his office. He said he already had one there. Finally, they ended up hanging almost side by side, stuck up against each other all strangely and crookedly, and the truth is we don’t really use either one of them.

1. The DVR is his domain. J is obsessive compulsive about our DVR. He runs the remote control, he sets the timers for recording things, and he organizes things into folders. He’s not mean about it. He just likes it that way. And I’m okay with it, for the most part. He does it all very meticulously. And as SOON as we are done watching something, he deletes it. No time to pause and think about the decision. No time to second-guess whether we are truly done with that show or not. Will we want to watch that movie again next week? Just as I begin asking myself that question- before the first credits make it halfway up the screen- I realize it doesn’t matter, because it’s already been deleted.(UNLESS it is the Alabama-LSU game. It lives on.)
Our recording schedule is always full of sports-related things. Games, pre-game shows, pre-pre-game shows, post-game shows, after-post-game shows, ultimate-complete-total-wrap-up-post-game shows, and shows on ESPN where a bunch of men in suits sit around and talk about all of those shows.
There are movies, too, and of course the various TV series that we both love to watch (American Idol, House, and our new love, Alcatraz.) J has all of these carefully sorted into folders: “Movies,” “Series,” “Sports,” “Alabama” (which technically could fit INTO “Sports”), and “Lacey’s Stuff.” All of the folders, of course, have numbers beside them, indicating how many items are in there. Most of them are high numbers, anywhere between five and fifteen.
Mine has one. One show. It is Cupcake Wars. The most I have ever had in my folder, ever, is three. I did a happy dance that day, because I felt like I was finally moving up in the world… finally establishing myself in our DVR. I try to save my shows. I don’t delete them when I’m done. I stand in the kitchen, chopping up an onion as the last episode of Next Great Baker ends, and I think to myself, “I’m not deleting that!” Then I defiantly go on to the next show in my folder (if there is one).
But then J walks in the door. And I say, “dinner will be ready in 10. You can watch ESPN until then. ” And he says, “thanks,” and picks up the remote, and says, “Have you watched this Next Great Baker?” And I say “Yes,” and in my head I tell him not to delete it. But then I turn to the TV as it says “Please wait. Events are being deleted.”
And then my number is back to one. Or zero.
The thing is, I know it’s not rational to want to keep these shows. I know I’m NOT going to watch them again. I only want to keep them because I know J wants to delete them. It’s the stubborn, un-submissive, non-Proverbs 31 wife inside of me.
The other day, I recorded Footloose. I recorded it WHILE I watched it (I got the courage to start recording my own things about two months ago). After all, I was multi-tasking and I wanted to watch it again, when I had time to sit and really digest what was happening. That was at 2:00 p.m. The movie didn’t live to see 8:00 p.m. I will not be watching it again.
The other day I asked him why we couldn’t keep all of my stuff out, loose, and then make one folder that said “Jonathan’s Stuff.” He could put all of HIS shows in there, and he would have a big number. I wouldn’t have to think about my insignificance in DVR World then.
We discussed it for two seconds, then wrapped up with “that’s a ridiculous suggestion.”

So, married readers… what are the things you had to learn in the first few months after your wedding? What is the number one thing overall? Give us newlyweds (and engaged people) some wisdom to mull over.

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3 comments

  1. J’s big brother just read this and says, “I have many, many suggestions for J. Bless you, lovely Lacey. Bless you. You are a gracious, loving wife. I noticed a reoccuring problem and the only solution for it will be having children.” (I am quoting my husband, typing for him. These are not my words . . .) Misty says, “Tell him to stop deleting your shows! That drives me crazy just reading it! And didn’t he PRAY for a blonde? He should rejoice with thanksgiving upon every discovery of a golden blonde hair in his bathroom! [Imagine J gloriously lifting a hair from the floor and belting out the Hallelujah chorus!] And as for the salt and pepper, I’m with you on that. When he has a three-year-old, he will learn to put the shakers away . . . especially since he likes things clean. 😉 We love you both and I remember adjusting to married life, too . . . although Joey might be a bit easier to live with. I’m afraid I’m more difficult than you are, though, Lacey. So be it. Only He can make two of one.

    1. I mean one of two. Yeah, I guess that would be our adversary who would try to make two of one. Ugh . . . it’s late here. 🙂

  2. I loved your Top 5 List. When I saw an article today about the longest married couple in America and this quote, I thought it would be fun to pass it along. The man is 100 years old. Here is a quote from the article.

    As for the secret to their wedded bliss as they approach their 80th anniversary, Wilbur says, “It’s very simple. It’s give and take and compromise.”

    So, Lacey, there you have it! 🙂
    Love you,
    Pauline

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