Hi, Thomas here today.
PJ said something to me the other day that really resonated with me and, like most things in life, it was completely unintentional in the effect it had on me. Don’t you love when that happens, though?
We were in Amsterdam getting ready to go out and explore the city for the second night in a row (we spent most nights there walking around the streets for hours soaking up the architecture and wondering what it would be like to live in a gorgeous canal house). I was tired from walking around all day and needed a pick me up. For some reason, I was craving a Coke, which is strange because we don’t drink soft drinks at home, but maybe it was because we were in a fun new city and the idea of doing something out of the ordinary was appealing to me? Who knows, but nonetheless, I wanted one. Badly.
As we were getting ready, I mentioned to PJ that I wanted a Coke to wake me up and said we should get one once we head out. Without hesitating, he looked at me and said “You don’t need a Coke because it’ll make your head hurt and then you’ll complain for the rest of the night. You know how all that sugar affects you.” Normally I would be annoyed with a statement like that. “Um, excuse you for presuming to know what makes me have or not have a headache!” I would immediately channel my inner MTV Diary with “You think you know, but you have NO idea.”
But the truth is, he was right. When I drink soda or have too many sweets, my head starts hurting from all the sugar and, like clockwork, I complain. Every. Time. And since I’m around PJ 24/7, he’s the one who has the privilege of listening to me all night. But when he said that to me in our hotel room, I wasn’t angry, upset, or defensive. I felt happy, safe, warm. After being together for so long, I sometimes forget that he admittedly knows me better (or just as well) as I know myself. And what a great feeling that is.
A couple of weeks ago we talked about what happens when the sparks wear off and how relationships change over time. When PJ reminded me of my sugary headaches, it made me think about how comforting it is to share a life with someone for so many years. It’s easy to say things have become boring or monotonous after so long, but nothing can replace that feeling of home, of family, that comes with all those years. Sometimes we just need a quick, one-off statement to remind ourselves of that. New things are shiny, fun, and exciting, but is there anything like re-watching your old favorite movie? Or cozying up in your favorite sweater? Or listening to an old song you haven’t heard in a while and being transported to a certain time and place? Or better yet, knowing your PJ is there to remind you, even after all these years, why you fell in love with him in the first place?
Our life together isn’t perfect. Sometimes we argue all day or we say things to each other we wish we hadn’t, but at the end of the day, the things we end up remembering aren’t the arguments or harsh words. They’re the little moments like these that always resonate the hardest with us. These, along with the bad times, are the things that add up to a life spent together. Isn’t that what marriage is all about?
Oh, and in the end, I never got my Coke, but I guess I didn’t need it after all. And for PJ’s sake, I know we were both grateful.