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Posts Tagged ‘relationships’

After getting married, not only did I change my name, but I also went about changing my marital status on any forms or accounts that I was already updating.

I knew that the change would come into play once we filed our 2012 taxes, but I didn’t figure on seeing any changes before that.

Enter Geico.

I’ve had car insurance with Geico for more than 2 years now, and I’ve always been happy enough with the monthly cost. I mean, sure, who doesn’t want to pay less? But my rates were comparable to those of friends, and it was certainly doable on my budget.

Then I changed my marital status, and Geico changed their rates. To $20 less a month!

Now, let me assure you that I recognize that $20 is not a huge amount of money. Even over the course of the year, it’s not the same type of savings that we’d get if we, say, cut out cable. But it’s not really the $20 that got me.

It’s the fact that the discount happened after I noted that I was married.

Does being married make me a more responsible driver? Does it make me less likely to speed or get into accidents?

Does it make other drivers less likely to hit me? I’m pretty sure there aren’t any drivers out there who start to gun it through a red light, see me in my Ford Focus, and think, “Shoot, I better be more careful. She looks married.

I wonder, however, if they (Geico) are banking on a stereotype. Maybe they assume that because I’m married, I’m likely to drive less because my husband is likely to drive more. And if that’s the reasoning, they’re about 2 years behind schedule.

It’s true that I drive less, but I’ve been doing that since Husband was boyfriend, for one very simple reason: he doesn’t like my driving.

He doesn’t like my tendency to go with the flow of traffic, when traffic is flowing perhaps slightly faster than the posted limit.

He doesn’t like my tendency to take yellow lights for what they are – a warning that the light is about to change, so you better move quickly if you want to make it.

He doesn’t like my tendency to leave anything less than two car lengths between me and slowpoke in front of me.

And because I don’t like constant reminders of our different driving styles, I cede the driver’s seat.

I haven’t been keeping stats, but there are probably fewer disagreements in the car when he’s driving, as opposed to when I am. We probably also reach our destination anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes later.

So there you have it, Geico. If your plan was to reward me for driving less, then you’re a little behind the times.

But if you want to knock even more off that monthly rate, I’ll let Husband drive 100% of the time, instead of just 99%.

And I’ll make sure we leave at least a half hour earlier than planned.

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A year ago today, I said yes. And it was exhilarating.

In the past year, that feeling has only amplified. I’m at the point where I want to sprint down the aisle, just so I get there faster.

(I won’t, though, because I don’t sprint well in heels.)

And it makes me laugh to think that if you had asked me four years ago whether or not I’d be marrying BNF, I would have responded: “Marry him? I don’t even like him!

I first met BNF in 2008 while playing for my company softball team. He had missed the first couple games, but I’d heard about this supposedly amazing shortstop, so I was naturally curious.

During our first game together – him at short, me at second base – we had a chance early on to make a double play. The batter hit a grounder to BNF, and I quickly moved to cover second, prepared to then throw to first.

But the throw never came.

BNF decided to make the play himself, running over second and throwing to first.

(No one remembers, by the way, if the double play was made.)

I was furious. The shortstop I’d played with in BNF’s absence always threw the ball to me. In my mind, BNF must have thought that just because I’m a girl, I couldn’t handle it! The jerk!

Later on at the bar, I was sitting nearby when I heard him declare to the table, “The thing about women is…

So I turned. “I have to hear this.

Hold on a second,” he told me. “How old are you?”

22.”

Okay. You don’t know anything.”

And just like that I thought, well, it’s a good thing I don’t have to hang out with him outside of softball!

Fast forward four years, and I can’t even imagine sprinting down the aisle to anyone else.

And it doesn’t hurt that he now throws the ball to me.

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This past weekend BNF and I went up to Philly to meet with the pastor who will be marrying us in less than four months(!). We haven’t had any sessions with him yet, but all my married friends warned me about the “marriage test” they had to take for their pre-marital counseling.

There are just a bunch of questions to find out if you’re on the same page. You sit in separate rooms, but M and I texted each other to make sure we put the same answers. We don’t have time for extra sessions!

But apparently Presbyterians are a little more lax than Catholics.

Pastor B talked us through the ceremony structure and the possible elements that could go into it. We talked about reconciling my beliefs with the Jewish-atheist views of BNF. We discussed when, exactly, we’d rehearse the whole thing, since Pastor B has another wedding the night before ours. All very productive and positive things.

But no test.

As we were wrapping up, Pastor B gave us our homework assignment for the next meeting.

Think of five things you love about the other person, and three that drive you crazy.” And then he shared this anecdote.

I once had a couple in here to whom I’d given that assignment, and the guy said ‘I can’t think of three things.’ So I said to him, ‘Then I can’t marry you because you don’t know your fiancee well enough. I can give you five things that drive me crazy about her right now!‘”

Quite the sense of humor, Pastor B, but he has a point. If there isn’t one thing that drives you crazy about the other person – even if it’s something small – then you’re probably still on your best behavior around each other.

Think you can keep that up for a lifetime?

This whole assignment made me think of Up All Night. If you have time, watch the clip. I'm glad we don't have a whiteboard.

I can’t speak for BNF (and we’re not actually supposed to talk to each other about our lists before the meeting), but the things I love were much easier to come up with than the things that drive me crazy. And they also help put the “crazy” in perspective. If this list contains my biggest concerns, then we have very little to worry about.

Though, I suppose I’ll withhold judgment until I see what BNF has to say. I can already think of a few things I do that drive him nuts.

All part of my charm, I’m sure.

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Relationship:
noun
3. the mutual dealings, connections, or feelings that exist between two parties, countries, people, etc.

(That’s my own emphasis, by the way, because I think that’s important.)

I have always been under the impression that in order to be in a relationship, both parties should know about and agree to said status. It’s just good sense.

That definition was challenged, however, after my friend Hbomb shared a series of emails she’d exchanged with GQ – after she’d had the “friend talk” with him multiple times, and was clarifying that status after a mixed signals weekend.

GQ:

I freaking adore you. I say that as both a coworker, an ex, and even more-so as a friend…And I say all this as a friend. Our relationship was oh-so brief because, at the end of the day, it wasn’t meant to be. But our friendship? OMG…I called you that before we ever flirted with a relationship, and continued after.

Hbomb:

Well, this is a little awkward…I wasn’t aware that we were ever in a relationship, unless you meant relationship in the very broad, non-romantic sense, e.g. I have a “relationship” with my boss, my mom, my roommate, etc. To me, being in a relationship, romantically speaking, only occurs after two people have a conversation where they both agree that they are going to exclusively date each other. And we never even came close to discussing anything like that as far as I know, so I don’t see how you can consider me an ex…

GQ:

I used the word relationship because there was an oh-so-fleeting moment when I felt a spark of “something”– maybe it was an unrequited crush–for what must’ve been one week late last summer.

Hold on just a second. An unrequited crush can count as a relationship? The mere feeling of a potential spark? That can make someone an ex?

Well, shoot.

By my definition, I haven’t had too many full on relationships. A handful, here and there, plus, you know, the one super big one that I’m in right now (and forever!). But by GQ’s definition…

There was that one major unrequited crush from the seventh grade – I’m hoping only major crushes count, not minor ones – then a string of them throughout high school. You know how teenagers are.

There was that guy in my Italian class four years ago – I thought there was a spark. We never went out (or talked outside of class except on the walk to our respective homes), but apparently, he’s my ex.

And those are just the ones I can think of off the top of my head.

Should I count the lacrosse players I ogled in college? Or the blind dates I was set up on for sorority formals?

This list could get long.

And we haven’t even started on celebrities yet.

Though, by what other definition could I call Sawyer my ex?

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As a Conflict Resolution student, and an International Affairs nerd in general, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about methods of reconciliation. And the constant trend is that there can be no reconciliation without an airing of truths.

Then I started about thinking about what truths of my own I would air, and remembered a couple years ago, when I did just that – and how freeing it was.

So why not give it another shot?

I know that we don’t speak anymore and, let’s be honest, we were never really friends, but I am truly sorry for what you’re going through. I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy.

You’re not as important as you think you are, so please help out when we ask for it.

I understand your desire to want to practice French. I want to do that, too. But you sound pretentious when you do it right in the middle of an English conversation.

I am honestly impressed with your networking skills. But I still won’t ask your advice because I don’t trust you.

I didn’t tell you I’d be in Chicago because you had already let several emails go unanswered. And that’s okay. I hope you and J are doing well.

I really wish you hadn’t moved.

It drives me crazy how we always seem to work according to your timetable. You talk about friendship like it’s an unbreakable bond, but you’d never know it the way you cancel every plan we’ve ever had.

I’m so excited for the both of you! And I can’t wait until May!

Please stop using Facebook as a weapon. You are far too old for that shit.

There may not be any reconciliation to these truths – whether because it’s not needed or will just never happen – but the truth-telling on its own can work wonders.

Maybe I should try this on a regular basis.

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Back in September, BNF joined a baseball league and last night I finally got the chance to go to one of his games. One of the first things he told me about when he started was the coach. “He’s really anti-marriage,” he told me. “He actually sent me an article about how marriage is bad for you after I told him I was engaged.

So, naturally, I couldn’t wait to meet this guy, and I was certain that I’d be welcome at the game.

Coach did not disappoint.

I introduced myself when we got to the field, before the guys started warming up.

So you’re going to try that marriage thing?” he asked me. “It’s a mistake. You’ll be so bored. Can you really imagine spending the rest of your life with the same person? God, that’s awful.

When I told him that not only was I excited about my upcoming marriage, but that I was inspired by my parents (who will be celebrating 35 years in November!), it prompted him to ask me how old I was.

You’re only 26? And you can really imagine spending the next 20 to 30 years with the same person?

I’m not really sure how we got from “the rest of your life” to “20 to 30 years,” unless he thinks that everyone dies before 60. What an optimist.

After Coach left the bleachers to go warm up with the team, another guy who had been sitting there the entire time, unassociated with the team, turned to me.

That guy is a piece of work! He’s really something else.

I assured him that I’d been warned and we laughed and chatted a bit. And when he stood up to leave he joked, “Well, I guess I’ll just go back to my “boring” wife of 21 years. I’ll tell her, ‘you know, honey, I thought things were great until I heard this unsolicited advice from a guy at the field – guess we’ll have to change things up.‘”

The real kicker, though, aside from the reaction of complete strangers, came at the end of the game, when Coach started a sentence with, “My girlfriend…

Well, now. I definitely did not see that one coming.

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You would think that in a weekend in which I went skydiving, that that would be the most exhilarating event of the weekend.

You would think.

But this weekend you would be wrong.

Skydiving was a rush. That’s no surprise. And I’ll devote a whole post to it later this week – complete with photos. But skydiving was on Saturday, and something much more exciting happened Sunday morning.

It started out with the plan to do a long run with the boyfriend – down Rock Creek to the Lincoln Memorial and along the Mall. It was a gorgeous day, if a little bit warm, but we had a great few miles from home through the park. As we were nearing the back of Lincoln Memorial, however, we realized that we had not anticipated this heat and a brief break was in order.

We stopped at the top of the steps overlooking the Potomac and I played photographer again (trying to get a good angle like the boyfriend always does), with moderate success.

As we were preparing to continue on, and pick up some water, the boyfriend paused and told me, “I’m so glad that we can run together. I love that we can do this.

I agreed, of course, not knowing where this was coming from, and then came the rush.

He got down on one knee and asked me to spend my life with him. He pulled out the ring that he’d had tucked in the pocket of his running shorts and presented it, as I tried to pick my jaw up off the ground and gather myself enough to say, “Yes! Of course!

With the ring newly on my finger (and my happy tears mostly dried), we went to celebrate at brunch with RB, LB, K, and E. And then came the next surprise.

All during the cab ride I’d been trying to call Mama to tell her the good news, and she wasn’t answering her phone. I said to the boyfriend (now fiance), “I can’t call anyone else before I talk to my mom! Why isn’t she answering?

And then I walked into the restaurant and saw Mama, Daddy, and some of my best friends (including Cla – who had helped the fiance plan and execute), and I burst into tears once again.

Skydiving was a rush, for sure, but Sunday, May 8, was infinitely better.

A: Jumping out of a plane’s got nothing on simply saying yes.

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