June 6 was a big day for my bride and me. (I’m pausing here, anticipating Kelly’s reaction: “How could you get our anniversary date wrong?”)
Oh I didn’t forget. June 5 was anniversary No. 31. Shocking as it is that an angelic girl had stuck around with me for 31 years, it dawned on me that the next day, June 6, was the first day of Year 32. Twenty-five was a big deal (we renewed our vows and I arrived at the church on horseback, wearing an ill-fitting knight’s helmet); 30 was unbelievable (see: 31); and with each new number, I’m even more puzzled about coming up with a different answer for, “How did you do it?”
My default response, the only one with any credibility, is simple: Ask Kelly.
As the calendar progresses toward the next day, month, year and lifetime of marriage, the days are also clicking down to another set of nuptials. Fifteen days from now (Aug. 23), Kory Myrick will make our youngest daughter, Natasha, his wife.
Here’s the head-over-heels-in-love couple.
So you’d think I’d been busy dispensing marriage advice, right? Not really. The most input I’ve given is when Natasha laughs randomly and like a little girl about something, well, random or incomprehensible. That’s when I remind Kory, “You’re marrying her.”
No, instead of telling the husband-and-wife-to-be how it’s done, I’ll be giving 15 days worth of advice on “How to wreck your marriage.” (There’s some fancy word for using negative statements to bring about positive motivation, but I’m all out of fancy words for today).
I was already pondering this mini-series of marital caution when I ran across a blog called Single Dad Laughing. It’s (mostly) funny stuff. Entirely secular, I think, but considering that all classes and sects have 50 percent divorce rates – Christians and secular humanists alike – these are undoubtedly universal truths. The ugly truth, though, is that I’ve tried some of them to varying degrees, which is why I have such trouble answering, “How did you do it?”
Wrecking ball No. 1 – Don’t just keep secrets, but let your secrets have secrets, and those secrets have secrets, and so on. And make sure that many secrets have dollar signs, and make sure you connect all of them to your own insecurities and emotional wounds. That way, secret-keeping gets easier, because you can rationalize that exposing even the tiniest keepsie (that thing you could NEVER tell anyone, especially your wife) would be more damaging than maintaining deception and dishonor.
So, sure, keep secrets. Especially secrets about YOUR money. (We’ll revisit the your money/my money/anything-t0-do-with-money theme quite a bit over the next 15 days). Things will also begin to become markedly more faith-oriented as we go, so just a heads-up to my atheist/secular/humanist pals.
I’m also building a playlist for the couple. You can expect a eclectic, seemingly random list. I recently rediscovered how Avalon’s music speaks to me. Here’s “You Were There.”