At our wedding we didn’t have a traditional book signing option. Instead we had our family and friends sign words of encouragement, affirmations, and tips on Jenga pieces.
(It takes a village right?)
Many of the notes made us laugh. They also made us gasp in surprise and nod our head in approval.
But, there was one in particular—from my mom of course—that stood out to us.
The Jenga piece read: “Keep the fights clean and the sex dirty.”
We laughed. However, as we near our second wedding anniversary, we realize now that it may have been the best advice yet.
As I’ve stated a million times about marriage before, it’s hard.
And it’s not the monogamy, taking turns with walking the dog, or figuring out who’ll cook that makes it a challenge. Marriage is hard because of the demand for kindness all of the time.
It’s also having to be constantly considerate, honest, and vulnerable 24/7 that makes marriage a challenge. In addition to all of that though, it’s remembering all of the things you know about each other (what sets them off and what makes them feel good) when you’re mad as hell.
And in the spirit of honesty, I’ll be first to admit that when I’m mad the last thing I’m thinking about is making Mikey feel good.
Instead, I’m either actively going for the jugular or prioritizing my own disdain—completely incapable of being empathetic to his plight.
The same goes for him. Thus, as you can imagine, if you’ve ever been at odds with someone you love, the outcome is hellish.
True to 2017 fashion, our most recent argument happened on December 30th, just as we were about to leave the worst year ever, behind.
To be honest, I can’t even remember why we argued.
I think it was a mixture of something dealing with tone and how tired we were.
2017 wore us down and out, as I know is the case for many people. Both of us have had to be strong in our own way. So, consequently, we happened to reach our wits end at the exact same moment.
The result was a fight, shower, and a bout of silence, as we sat side-by-side on our steps as our dog fell asleep—over our shenanigans.
The spell seemed to be unbreakable until my cousin, who I didn’t realize was on her way over with her boyfriend, stopped by to drop off tables and chairs for the funeral we were throwing for 2017 the following day.
Unsurprisingly, it was just what we needed. Their visit turned into a double date and granted us the space to cool off.
We also talked and there’s nothing like being in public to remind us to get and keep our shit together.
Eventually, we called it a night and found that unexpected couple time, margaritas, and Cuban food makes for some hot-ass, bomb-ass make-up sex.
And just like there’s nothing like being in public to remind us to keep our shit together, there’s nothing like a few orgasms to bring us back to our senses.
And our sensible findings?
We could have prevented our fight. All year, we’d been so good at putting the lessons we learned in our first year of marriage to the test.
- Implemented cease-fires.
- Made an effort to speak calmly.
- Taken naps when it was clear we were just tired.
and have overall done our best to act like we have some sense.
On up until December 30th, we’d been masters at fighting clean and keeping the more primal behavior in the bedroom.
Until we didn’t.
And it was awful to have failed at marriage that day after doing so well for so long, but just as humans are great we are also flawed. And out of that day came a lesson and a reminder to take heed to the notes, thoughts, and words of encouragement we received on our wedding day.
How about you, Wordies?
For those in romantic relationships or not, what are you learning or have learned about fighting clean?