Sunday, September 23, 2018

Marriage is like building with Legos. But don't follow the instructions on the box. Build something new.

When I met my husband, I felt like a misfit Lego piece that had finally clicked into place. Instead of twisting myself into shapes imagined by others, I found someone I could build something new with.

That was cool.

And while that first connection is crucial, how you build with your bricks afterward is even more important.
It’s best if you stay on equal footing, not one of you a brick and the other a big square of grass: then all of you is attached to them, but only a small part of their piece is attached to you, leaving plenty of grass for other bricks to click onto.
Just be careful of becoming too alike and attached. You don't want your borders to dissolve so much that you forget how to separate, never enjoying your own hobbies and friends. 
“I like doing things apart,” says my aunt of her 25-year-marriage. “When you’re together all the time, you have nothing to tell each other. All your stories are the same.”
Just don't spend so much energy on other interests that you can't reconnect: time apart should strengthen your bond, not weaken it.
But the most important thing to remember is that what you build with your bricks doesn't have to look like what anyone else created. In fact, it really shouldn't. Because it's your own.


Sunday, September 2, 2018

I found an antidote to fear: a permanent reminder to make the most of my time

Turning 41 was a big deal for me, since it was the age my mother was when she was killed in a car accident.
I thought for a long time about how I wanted to mark that milestone, and eventually decided to get a tattoo.
It's on my forearm, in a spot that's both easily hidden and easily seen every time I need a reminder. 
A reminder that every year, every day, I have now is one that my mother never had. And that I should make the most of every one I get from now on.
And this week when I wanted to celebrate my mother's birthday by exploring a new trail, that tattoo made sure I went. 
Because her accident also gave me a fear of driving, and that fear was trying to tell me not to go, that unnecessary drives are unnecessary risks.
But I looked at that tattoo and it told me to go. So the dog and I, we got in the car and drove to that new trail.

That was cool.

Even cooler? I know my mother would have been proud.