Making it work
Three weeks till New Years. It is always so hard to believe how fast the years fly by. I remember when I was a little kid and time went so slow. Now all I want to do is slow it down and be able savor every second.
I find it hard to believe that come March I will be starting my third year in Ireland. What I find even harder to believe is that I am married to Aaron and the happiest I have ever been. Even though I fell in love with Aaron just about the moment I met him I never dreamt that we would one day be married.
Due to Covid I feel like the two of us have lived in this special cocoon, (our apartment,) for the last year and a half. So many things have happened in this space. Most importantly though we have been able to build a solid base for our relationship. Despite knowing we loved each other greatly when we married, compared to most married people we had spent very little physical time with each other, about three months, the rest of the time we had texted as I was in America and Aaron was in Ireland.
When we married I was confident I knew his heart and soul and even what was going on in head most of the time, but still there are so many other issues to deal with in a marriage, especially when you have spent so little time together. So many things neither of us knew about each other. How did we deal with disagreements, bad news, good news, how considerate of each other feelings were we, could he deal with my bad habits and I his, how easily could he we both forgive, did we compromise or did we always have to get our own way. The list is virtually endless.
Our little cocoon that we have lived in with just ourselves for has been a great opportunity for the two of us to really develop our relationship and watch it become something better than either of us ever expected. It really does get better every day as we continue to understand each other better.
Sometimes I think of our cocoon as a laboratory where we have been conducting experiments on how to have the best relationship. When we moved into our apartment together I was probably more scared than Aaron. I was leaving New York, where I had made a life for myself for the last 20 years and moving to Dublin where I had no support system and knew no one. No matter how excited I was and how much I loved Aaron in the back of my head there was a lingering fear of what I would do if things didn’t work out. I think part of that was due to the so called,”age gap relationship.” I was at a point in my life where getting up and starting a new life for myself was not that easy.
If we have learned one important thing in our lab it is that there is no right and wrong for us. If one of us is right then the other is wrong and that is no good. When you take right and wrong out of the equation and think of the other person's feelings, their likes and dislikes and what they want usually the problem is solved.
I know I can be a real anal asshole sometimes and I know Aaron knows it. More and more I see him do things not so I won’t be angry with him but because he knows it will make me happy. Usually all I want to do is run over and hug him. Sometimes I do and other times I just thank him, but I like to let him know that I notice all the different things he does for me. Most importantly though it goes full circle and I make the best effort I can to make him happy doing things for him. I don’t really talk about this with Aaron but the more we think of each other the more seamless our relationship becomes.
Where I am the vocal one Aaron is more the silent type. In a short time I have learned to read him better than he reads himself. I usually know the instant something bothers him. Finding out what it is though is often like pulling teeth, The harder I pull the harder it is to get it out of him. Sometimes I have simply irritated him and he is smiling again in no time at all. Other times I found he is having fears or questions about us. Now rather than trying to pull it out of him I can reveal some of my fears and or anxieties and he often opens up. This in turn has allowed us to be more honest with each other. We also both know that not even our deepest fears will scare us away from each other.
It is freeing to feel so completely accepted by the most important person in your life. We spend a lot of time talking about how happy and in love we are. It sounds foolish to say but we often wonder if other couples could be so in love with each other. Not only is Aaron my husband he is also my best friend. Even in our apartment where there is room to spread out we are almost always together not ever tiring of the other person. I sometimes joke that we will be like one of those old married couples that people always look at and say, “are they always with each other?”
I know things always change and I am sure there will be a few bumps but I believe we are ready for anything. Although we cannot wait to get out and start moving again we realize how fortunate we have been to have had all this time to build more solid relationship.
I am not sure if I have written about it before but I first came to Ireland to visit Aaron 2 years ago this coming January. When I came to visit him that January it had been 2 ½ years since we had first met in New York and the only contact we had during that gap were some texts. We had such a great time when I visited that January that we decided I would come back in April for another visit. At the beginning of March Covid was starting and the world was coming to a standstill. We rethought everything and decided I should not wait until April but come ASAP. I probably got one of the last flights leaving the United States.
At this point marriage had never entered our minds. As luck would have it I ended up having to stay in Dublin and the rest is history...