I was searching through my recipe book in search of coconut milk pumpkin pie – and didn’t find it. What I discovered, however, was a whole section of rapturous, pompous food entries from my first two years of marriage. Lined pages filled with gourmet dreams and tiny witticisms that I no longer understand, that food diary reminds me, as I stand in my kitchen now, that life has changed.
I don’t write anymore. Well, at least, I don’t write much down anymore, judging from the lack of posts here in the public eye (since July! How shocking!) and the almost empty notebook containing six rough hewn chapters of a novel I have betrayed for demands of a new job.
I do still think about things – and have many private moments of blogging, to myself, for my own personal amusement. I am less inclined to let those diaries and impressions find a life outside of my head.
Reading through some of the carefully penned entries on rosemary fennel roasted turkeys and cleverly re-designed shepherd’s pies, (and their deep, cosmic metaphors about married life) I am rather glad that most of the things I think about don’t make it past my fingertips.
I have been asked, of late, or prodded, rather, on why from the outside it seems that my husband and I are so happy together. It’s a question that always troubles me – the last few chats have been in the context of people who are having a difficult time in their relationships, and they usually ask me to recommend a book, or share a recipe for success based on my experience.
I feel the opposite of smug during these conversations – as I don’t really have an answer or a formula to administer. So much of our marital bliss is a complete gift that I have somehow been the lucky recipient of, and I can take no credit for.
But for Thanksgiving’s sake, I am inclined to share a simple list of ingredients that, mixed together, will give the distinct flavour of a marriage that has grown richer over the last four years, from insecurity to happiness, from grand sweeping anxieties to everyday pockets of peace. This is me, standing up at the dinner table, listing what I am thankful for:
– a willingness to be seen
– timely solitude
– many magnificent meals together
– a small, cosy apartment
– 500 million episodes of his favorite tv show
– many flights of craft beer and discussions devoted to their qualities
– honest conversations about money (and the lack of it)
– late night essay editing
– hearty, heated discussions about the process of creativity
– a man who makes mutton chops, mismatched clothing and a perpetual rumpledness look effortlessly sexy
– friends who like us both
– room to change one’s mind, appearance, outlook and long-held opinions
– and most recently, a new, rescued kitten who needs a mom and a dad
It’s Thanksgiving, again. And my list keeps getting longer every year.