What did you just eat? Is that peanut butter in your breath? My wife asked me clearly annoyed at the smell. Her first pregnancy didn’t come alone. It came with incredible spidery senses that were particularly high in the smells department.
I stumbled through my answer because the last time I had peanut butter was three days before she asked me. Since then I had religiously brushed, flossed, and water-picked my teeth. But apparently, my dental routine wasn’t enough for me to get rid of the clearly obnoxious scent of our organic dark roasted smooth peanut butter.
I told her that and I followed with a sheepishly, “I don’t know what else to tell you.”
She firmly responded, “I know what to tell you: you are sleeping outside.”
And just like that, I was relegated to the doghouse. The doghouse is not a warm, nor comfortable, place. It is usually reserved for husbands who make off-putting slightly sexist comments after they’ve drunk too many IPAs at someone’s birthday party.
But I was sent there after tasting the deliciousness of nut butter three days before. I know there is hell to pay for eating legumes but I thought it would be more like gastric distress. Little did I know I would be punished by my wife for doing something some people consider healthy.
My wife is not mean and I don’t recall a time when she told me anything like this when she wasn’t pregnant.
But this time she was pregnant and, as a society, we grant incredible latitude to pregnant women because they are creating life for god’s sake — which is godlike.
I know. I have seen it. I have been there. It’s bad-ass and all women that do it are bosses.
But the Mai-Tai of hormones cocktail provided by nature to pregnant women makes the relationship feel like nine months’ of Disneyland’s Space Mountain — this rollercoaster specifically because you can barely see anything in the darkness of the ride but you feel it because of the centrifugal force is threatening to rip your seatbelt and launch you headfirst into oblivion.
I don’t let my ego get in the way. I’m ready for these conversations and the reason is simple: I didn’t elope.
If you eloped, this simple conversation might’ve driven you to divorce. Like Joe Rogan says: marriage is a high-stakes problem solving with dire consequences. Of course, I’m paraphrasing because Joe Rogan was talking about Mixed Martial Arts and not marriage. But you get it.
If you skipped the wedding planning, you skipped the most wonderful opportunity to bootcamp train for your marriage. You lose the opportunity to how to negotiate reality with your future spouse. Wedding planning is the perfect microcosm of negotiation toward a similar goal while balancing the intentions, egos, and desires of everyone surrounding you.
There are plenty of people that don’t make it past the wedding planning or they get to the wedding and they hate their better half and all of the in-laws except for the grandma who, even though a bit racist, has a place in their heart because of her candor.
If you make it through the wedding day then it is very likely that you will find a way to work out all the following relationship milestones like what religion to teach your kids, where to live and raise a family, do your kids punch bullies right in the nose or do they tattle-tell like little weaklings, should they be allowed to play extremely boring shoot-me-now-right-in-the-forehead sports like baseball or should they be shoot right in the face at the mere mention of sports.
If you make it through the wedding planning there’s a good chance that you will have the tools to negotiate your marriage but that only happens if you don’t elope. If you eloped, keep hitting the gym because you will soon be back on the dating pool and things are rough out there.