I heard the awful news this morning that yet another one of my friends is going through the pain of divorce. This was not something my friend wanted. His wife was the one who made the decision. They were together for 25 years between dating and marriage and have two beautiful children together. As my husband was relaying the heartbreaking details we remembered this movie and specifically this scene. Kent and I have been married now for 25 years ourselves, and no, it hasn’t always been easy or full of stars and rainbows. But I will tell you what. This scene describes perfectly how I feel about Kent and about being married.
because we’re an “us.” There’s a history, and histories don’t happen overnight. In Mesopotamia or Ancient Troy or somewhere back there, there were cities built on top of other cities, but I don’t want to build another city. I like this city. I know where we keep the Bactine, and what kind of mood you’re in when you wake up by which eyebrow is higher. And you always know that I’m a little quiet in the morning and compensate accordingly. That’s a dance you perfect over time.
We are an us. I know Kent and he knows me. We have a dance we have perfected over time. He knows that I suck at confrontation even when it is necessary and I know that when he is frustrated about one thing he will lose it over something completely different. I know that he is amazing with directions and is a good judge of character and he knows that I have good insight into issues and an easy going attitude.
And it’s hard, it’s much harder than I thought it would be, but there’s more good than bad. And you don’t just give up.
Our good most certainly outweighs our bad even though in the rough places it sometimes that is hard to see. But you see, we don’t give up. That is an amazing quality to find in another person. I have known so many people who have found themselves married to a partner who just wasn’t as committed as they were. I am unbelievably thankful to be married to someone who does not see being apart as an option.
And it’s not for the sake of the children, but they’re great kids aren’t they? And we made them – I mean think about that – there were no people there and then there were people – two of them. And they grew. And I won’t be able to say to some stranger, “Josh has your hands,” or “Remember how Erin threw up at the Lincoln Memorial?”
I mean seriously, they are GREAT kids; and Rosalind has his coloring and my sense of humor; and Caedmon has my quirkiness and Kent’s sense of fairness. They are both smart and kind and unique creations. Honestly, who else can say remember when Rozzie cut her head open on the monkey sculpture or Caedmon bashed his teeth in on the bench at Costco?
So what if that stranger listens to me? I mean, Lucas Adler listens but then he always says “between you and I” and it should be “between you and me”, because “between” is a preposition.
You know what, sometimes he tunes me out when I ramble and sometimes I forget things he asked me to do. But I don’t want to be heard by some stranger. I want to be heard by him.
I’ll try to remember that those things can be mildly endearing at times and really not worth not having sex over. And I’ll try to relax. I mean is it the end of the world to have sex when you don’t totally feel like it? There are all kinds of sex, aren’t there? Comfort sex, tender sex, relief sex, “I’m not in the mood, but you are” sex.
Seriously, people don’t talk about it but it is true. The things that bug us, and the petty arguments, are they really reasons not to come back together and love each other in a physical way? There are all kinds of sex in marriage and they are good.
And let’s face it, anybody is going to have traits that get on your nerves, why shouldn’t it be your annoying traits?
Right? Believe me, I have known folks who got divorced and then remarried each other years later when they realized EVERYONE has annoying traits that get on your nerves.
And you’re a good friend and good friends are hard to find. Charlotte in Charlotte’s Web said that and I love the way you read that to Erin – when you take on the voice of Wilbur the pig with such commitment even when you’re bone tired. It speaks volumes about character. And ultimately isn’t that what it comes down to? What a person’s made of at the end of the day?
Kent is my best friend and he is good at it. Is he perfect? No. But his character at the end of the day is one of the very best things about him. He is a fantastic father and my best friend.
Because that pith helmet girl is still in here – “BEE-BOO, BEE-BOO!” And I didn’t even know she existed until I met you. And if you leave, I may never see her again – even though I said at times you beat her out of me – Isn’t that the paradox? Haven’t we hit the essential paradox? Give and take, push and pull, yin and yang, the best of times, the worst of times.
Sometimes the best part of us that our spouse helped us find when we fist met we feel like they also drain out of us. As she said in the movie, isn’t that the paradox? The give and take? The push and pull? We have to remember that at the end of the day, we are on the same team. That the part of ourselves that only our spouse brings out of us and the part of them that we love the most is always right there under the surface. Sometimes it is harder to find, sometimes it get buried under the ruble of so many emotional earthquakes but I am here to tell you that you can find him or her again if you dig through the rubble together.
I mean I guess what I’m trying to say is – I choose Chow Fun’s everyday of my life because I love you Kent Krabill.