Portrait of a marriage

We’re a few months in, no idea how long exactly. Nobody bothers to count, not when you’re in it for the long haul. I was so surprised after the first month when my mum texted me “You’ve been married for a month!”. I guess somebody is keeping track. We don’t see much meaning in it. I feel like a lot of the adults who assiduously keep track of such lengths of time have to work especially hard at their relationship, so a lengthier commitment becomes a badge of honor for how long they have managed to keep peace or how tenacious they are for not calling it quits.

Nothing is particularly different. We’re the same people, in the same relationship, thinking the same thoughts, judging the same other people. Perhaps we are becoming more pronouncedly ourselves. When he first asked me to date him, the main reason he stated for making the proposition was that he could be the most true version of himself around me. Which essentially means he does not mind burping, farting, making the lamest puns, being totally uncool, being socially awkward, etc. around me. In some angles that sounds romantic. In others that means that I have become equivalent to a piece of furniture around him, so he is physically incapable of being embarrassed around me. Okay.

Here is what happens in the gentle swing of things

1. We hardly go to bed at the same time. I rather dislike sharing my bed actually (yes, I still think of it as mine and he is but a migratory bird on a temporary visa haha). He’s kind of a lanky person but he takes up an extraordinary amount of space for someone so skinny. The other night we switched sides (because the power strip is on his side, and my phone was out of battery but I wanted to play Drop 7 (my latest app addiction, which XM introduced to us when we had to wait for her to finish eating on our road trip. She eats like a little snail.) and he actually had the brazenness to comment that my side of the bed felt smaller.

2. Because I usually sleep much later than him I’ve grown rather well acquainted with all his sleeping sounds. He has three main sleep sounds – eating, squeaking, and snoring. Some nights I hear him chomping away contentedly at nothing, but with distinct swallowing sounds. Then there is the snore. It’s pretty quiet as far as snores go (I’ve heard my dad’s), but it still keeps me wide awake when I’m trying to get to sleep. The squeaking is the cutest. He sounds exactly like a little mouse and I have no idea how he’s making that sound considering he’s a bass. It’s totally high-pitched and squeaky, like a little “eek!” at regular intervals, before it’s back to breathing sounds and eventually snoring. When he starts snoring that’s when I passively aggressively warm my frigid toes in the crook of his knees.

3. Thanks to my irregular sleeping hours and how early he goes to bed, I get kept up a lot and can rarely wake up in the morning (at a normal time). My first class is 11:30am, so that works out nicely. He has a class at 9:30am, then he comes home via bus so that he can ferry me to my class :P I usually prepare a really early lunch (we eat at 11-ish) but have been finding it hard to get up to do even that thanks to the snoring. So he often comes home to find me still tucked beneath the duvet at 10:40am, and now he calls me his embedded submanifold.

4. His puns are so bad I have a ranking system just for them. Just mild puns merit a simple eye-roll. When they’re a little worse I straight up tell him “That’s not funny.” He doesn’t care because I think his puns are for his own entertainment. (Another bonus of seeing me as a piece of furniture is that he can laugh at his own jokes unabashedly) When nobody gets his little jokes (when we’re dining in a group for example) I just give him a look and tell him “Omg, nobody got that”. The worst puns, even I don’t get. His cousin will then gleefully point out that “even Ivana didn’t get it!”

5. We go to the Crest on no-homework days with all the other cheapskate couples to catch second run movies. It’s nice to laugh together at big screen jokes and to be cheap together. Builds a real sense of camaraderie when you’re doing both at the same time. Gas up by the Crest is cheaper too. Today we went to see “Spy” and exulted in the smartness and amazingness of a movie with a predominantly female cast, and where the female cast is totally empowered and competent, even more so than the male agents.

6. We keep a little notebook of the car’s mileage, gallons pumped, and fuel price each time we go to a filling station, like responsible little adults. This is mainly something we picked up from Chris, so you know when your car is not being fuel efficient and when you have to bring it in for a check. And so you can gasp at gas prices in the future and mumble about how much it used to cost “in your day”.

7. We’re slowly developing our own special blend of neuroses, our own perspective of the world, our own moral grounds, our own ideas of what constitutes an insufferable person, our likes and dislikes… so much so that when we walk into a store, we circulate it first by ourselves and then find each other to show the other person the exact same things that caught our eye. It’s happened many times.

I’ll end with a quote from Roger McGough:

our love has become
as comfortable
as the jeans you lounge about in
as my old green coat

as necessary
as the change you get from the milkman
for a five pound note

our love has become
as nice
as a cup of tea in bed
as simple
as something the baby said


2 pensieri su “Portrait of a marriage

  1. As someone married to a loud snorer, I find it works best when I can fall asleep first. The snoring doesn’t usually wake me up, but it does make it hard to fall asleep.


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