Husband and I still haven’t had our traditional anniversary dinner. On prior anniversaries, we’ve gone for steaks at St. Elmo’s, seafood at Indy’s only revolving restaurant, and high tea at the West Baden Springs Hotel. All of these dates were wonderful and romantic and you can read about them here, here, and here. But this year was a little different. Husband had to start a new rotation out of town the day after our (weeknight) anniversary, so we settled for some quick Chinese food on the actual day and made reservations for a “fancy” dinner the following weekend. And then I got the flu. It was a really bad flu and I ended up dehydrated and in the emergency room. So we kept trying to reschedule, but then Husband was out of town for the rest of February and as soon as he arrived back home, I left for Atlanta to present my research at a national conference. And now it’s March.
There’s something about the challenge of scheduling our dinner date that seems somehow fitting for our past year of marriage. Year #4 of marriage involved lots of twists and turns that didn’t go as expected. Even though the frustrations, like my dissertation proposal getting postponed or Husband’s residency interview list ending up smaller than expected, weren’t directly about our marriage, they influenced our marriage and our daily routines and interactions with each other. We had flat tires and cracked teeth and broken toilets and insurance paperwork and slippery old stairs that we both fell down. And then there was the waiting.
I’ve written about this before, but medical school and psychology school involves a lot of waiting. Waiting for applications, waiting for interviews, and waiting for residency match days that determine the rest of your career. All of 2018 seemed like hard work and waiting. I even broke the year into quarters to help it “feel” like it was moving faster and would endure funny looks from friends when celebrating the end of “Q2.” Counting down quarters turned into counting down months, which turned into counting down weeks, and brings us to now where we are counting down days (10, to be exact). We tried to break up the waiting through our usual activity list of going to plays, attending blog events, volunteering in the community, hosting parties, and watching Netflix. These things were nice, but there was still SO MUCH waiting.
I don’t have much insight or many marriage gems from our year of hard work and waiting, but I do know that we made it through. We fixed our tires and made it to our dentist appointments and called a plumber and faxed over our insurance information and tried to avoid the stairs. We also went to church and went to the gym and went to visit our friends. We bought a new bedspread to brighten our bedroom after weeks of me complaining that I felt “stuck” with nothing new happening. (It helped.) We went to see Crazy Rich Asians and liked it. We reserved multiple “lazy Saturdays” for sweatpants and no homework. We planned a trip to Japan. We planned graduation parties. We planned our dream home. (We basically planned everything that made us think of celebrations and happy times.)
We also made a baby, but more on that another time. (Baby BS is due in August.)
I think the point of Year #4 was that there weren’t many “big” moments that defined our marriage. There were countless small memories of eating dinner together at ten o’clock at night, proofreading each other’s research proposals, and mutually deciding that the laundry pile could wait another day. We worked together. We worked hard. We persevered. And 2019 is the year to enjoy the results of everything we have been waiting for and working towards. I labeled 2019 as the “Year of Anticipation” since we anticipate our residency placements and our baby while Husband has labeled it as the “Year of Triumph” because he believes we will continue to conquer everything that life throws our way.
I like triumph. I like my Husband. I like my marriage. And I’m sure that I’ll like our anniversary dinner…if it ever gets rescheduled. This year has taught me to appreciate the small things, so I’ll keep counting my blessings, even if our dinner involves another round of take-out egg rolls.