Married with Goals

Today is the first full day of our fourth married year.

That’s another way of saying our anniversary was yesterday and I’m late.

We had a lovely time celebrating the blessed occasion by throwing dodgeballs (at the other team, not at each other) and downing Bandito’s food with new and old friends. Given our laid back style and the highlights of this year, the merriment seemed appropriate. Some of my favorite memories since last August include us being childishly ridiculous with a splash of only-because-we’re married thrown in. For instance, Dr. Who with cocktails. Or Lion King on the Landmark stage. David trying his darndest to scare me on the stairs and me bolting up them like a startled rabbit (a not infrequent occurrence… my fear of the dark coming out I think). Or the neighborhood walk that ends with “looking at a house” as an excuse to harvest the blackberry bushes. And you’ve already seen photos of Color Me Rad.

Those delightfully comic and whimsical moments often creep up on us instead of being planned, but being married to David is full of surprises. Given how much self-seriousness I can muster up, his fanciful side is a necessary antidote. But thanks to these moments, I’ve realized that “settling down” doesn’t mean settling, and the transition to old married couple will certainly come with laugh lines. I’m incredibly lucky and thankful for my perfect match.

What’s next for us? Maybe rental property. Maybe Europe. Definitely grad school for him. Almost certainly not a Scion tC for me, though we almost splurged before settling on a convertible rental in September (we tried to be irresponsible and failed). Who knows.

We keep kicking around ideas to wear away the rough edges. The process is rather like prospecting for skipping stones along a lake. You’ll look at dozens before you find the right shape, and enjoy the scene nonetheless.

Back in college, the thing about “real life” that terrified me most was the lack of concrete milemarkers after graduation. If not for David’s career as a teacher, the school year itself would be irrelevant, and I’d be adrift in time with nothing except what I made for myself. That’s either terrifying or exhilarating, depending on your personality. But four years into this new adventure, I have found new anchors and markers – they’re just not linked to time.

The inevitables are replaced by big dreams that may not be realized tomorrow or even next year, but leave you with that tingly smile that comes with a settled destination. Believe me, I’m the last person in the world to say that “the journey is more important than the destination” because of my personality type, so that’s not what I mean. For me, the joy comes in knowing that the destination is there and smiling at its fluidity. I do care, quite tremendously, if we ever get there. But I won’t be the least surprised if the destination is 100 miles west of what looks like true North today.

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