I’m going to go out on a limb and say that the first four months of marriage for The Pilot and I were not status-quo. For starters we did not take (and still haven’t) a honeymoon. After a two night stay in a not-so-far-from-my-parent’s-house B&B, we drove to our new, very temporary home in Corpus Christi.
We had about 24 hours to unload the car, find the coffee pot, decide who slept on what side of the bed, and begin studying for The Pilot’s week worth of flight time he had been scheduled for. Turns out the Marine Corp doesn’t really care if you’re fresh off the marriage alter with a countless array of bobby-pins still stuck in your hair. Nothing and no one, not even a wedding, will alter the flight schedule.
And so, the 4th night we were married, the Pilot and I placed our two (count them, two) kitchen chairs side by side in the living room and practiced his “Start Engine Checklist.” I sat on the right as the instructor, naturally, and he sat on the left calling out all the procedures and going through the hand motions of switching on and off various imaginary levers and buttons.
And despite the fact that I was the instructor and thus, a higher ranking officer, The Pilot refused to salute me. We’re continuing to work through this.
But perhaps the most significant and time consuming aspect of our first four months of marriage was this: Dirty Jobs.
The TV show.
Given that we were stationed in Corpus Christi (which we renamed “Corpus Crappy”) and that The Pilot had limited free time as it was, we spent much of it together on the couch, watching Dirty Jobs. In fact, we watched all seven seasons in only 3 months. I can’t say that I am particularly proud of our lack of ambition or creativity, but then again, never once in our dating relationships did we ever watch TV together. Needless to say, we discovered that we really enjoyed doing nothing together.
At the end of our fourth month stint in Corpus Christi, where The Pilot received his “wings” and became an official naval aviator, I had a small epiphany.
Our first several months of marriage may not have been normal per se; however, the rest of our marriage is guaranteed to be equally as dynamic. So what if we enjoy the simple things and find contentment in being together, instead of doing things together? Given The Pilot’s career path, being together will often be the exception rather than the rule.
So here’s to the little things: the quiet nights, take-out dinners and Red Box movies. Here’s to being fully present in the moments we’ll remember.
And here’s to the Marine Corp, for promising to make every day an adventure.