“I can’t go back and change anything. But I can be more conscious of right now.
I don’t want to ever again say I didn’t see it coming, that I didn’t recognise the moment for what it was. Something defining. Something that would change everything. Forever.
The little things are the big things.
This is the way your marriage ends.
With a whimper.”
There’s so much truth in those words.
They come from an article at the Good Men Project by Matthew Fray, called “This is the Way Your Marriage Ends—Not With a Bang”.
Matthew achingly articulates the biggest lesson I have learned from my own marriage breakdown.
I don’t want another relationship to end with a whimper, so I try to be more conscious. Sometimes I fail. Occasionally I fail quite dramatically, which lead to DD and I breaking up for a week or two last year.
But I’ve learned from that too – the main thing being not to make life changing decisions via text message when I have PMT.
That’s not to say I never have sulky moments and occasional snarks, no one is perfect.
However, I focus is on building my partner up instead of tearing him down; bombing him with affection rather than criticism; listening as well as talking; being open to new experiences, not immediately dismissing them; making an effort to do things I know will please him, rather than deciding it’s a hassle; and finding contentment in the small joys, while seeing the big ones as a bonus.
And I expect the same from him in return.
Mattew also notes: ” I think pride might kill more marriages than gambling or alcoholism or domestic violence.”
He explains that during arguments he would let his wife “cry instead of hugging because I was prideful and thought I was right.”
I completely understand what he means, but I don’t call it pride, it’s stubborness. And being stubborn is nothing to be proud of. I reckon refusing to meet in the middle is one of biggest causes of death in marriages.
I think that is what’s so special about finding love again at 50. You know it’s precious and you don’t take it for granted. You try to meet in the middle, you understand how important it is to communicate and you’re aware it’s dangerous to let resentment fester.
Speaking of trying new things … DD took me for my first workout with his personal trainer, The Warrior, over the weekend at the gorgeous Narrabeen Lake. We cycled around the lake and then did lots of exercises on the outdoor equipment.
My arms are KILLING me. The pain is actually waking me up in the middle of the night when I roll over on them.
I also have bruised knees from falling off the bike when The Warrior wasn’t looking … I’m not the world’s best bike rider …
DD was very impressed that I didn’t complain about any of it and was “Warrior tough”.
As usual, it was a crazy busy weekend.
Yesterday, we trekked across the city to take DD’s mum out for lunch before she heads overseas for a seven-weeks visit to her younger son. Afterwards, I shared a quick glass of wine on the couch with DD, before I drove him to the airport yet again and hugged him hard at the Departures curb.
I wish there had been more time together, but it was lovely to have one of those “small joys” moments together before another week of juggling single parenting with work during school holidays.
Song of the day: John Mellencamp “Cherry Bomb”