Friday, May 23, 2014

Happy Together

I've been saying this for years.  Well, we both have, actually.  One of the biggest "secrets" to a happy marriage is just remembering why the two of you got together in the first place. It was about love.  And sex.  It sure as hell wasn't because you exchanged job resumes and decided that this would make a great business partnership.  It probably wasn't because you both really enjoyed bowling.

No, it was probably because you thought she was pretty.  You liked the way she smiled or the way she laughed.  There was some strong "electricity" between the two of you.  It wasn't just because he or she was good in bed, but because you liked waking up to one another.  You liked walks on the beach, or in the park, or wherever. 

When we got married, we didn't have that proverbial "pot to piss in."  We didn't have a lot of money.  We had each other and just enough to get by, and that was all that mattered.  We got married in 1970. Vietnam was still raging as was the Cold War.  In the back of people's minds, they had that nagging thought that everything could come to a sudden end with the push of a button.  I suppose most every generation had it's own political nightmares.  The point is, we simply enjoyed being together and we wanted more of that.  So we got married.  And while every couple has disagreements about something or other - it's part of getting your lives adjusted - we really didn't argue about money, simply because we didn't have much of it to argue about. 

And then, as we mature, as we grow within our respective professions, we earn a little bit more money, we move into a bigger house, we need more space to put our "stuff," and eventually, if we're not careful, the more we HAVE, the more we may ARGUE about what to do with it. 

Sure, most everybody likes (and has) "toys" of one sort or another. "Toys" don't have to be large items like snowmobiles or 4-wheelers, they can be small, like porcelain dolls or crystal, like tools or shoes.

And it's bad enough that couples should forget that they were first and foremost LOVERS, and begin quibbling about what to spend their "disposable income" on, but I guarantee you,  you're on the Highway to Hell the minute either one of you utters the words "my money," or "your money."  When every unnecessary purchase has to become a business negotiation, when things start to become tit-for-tat and quid pro quo, you've got a problem.  And the problem is rather two-fold;  you've accumulated too much fucking "stuff" and/or you've simply become more focused on the "stuff" than the fact that you're lovers.

Now granted, we all age and over time we probably don't perform as "acrobatic" of sex as we used to, but that doesn't have anything to do with being lovers and just enjoying one another's company.  It's not about the "having," it's about the "doing."  It's not about what kind of car you drive or how many of them you have, but how you feel when you're together riding in it.

It's not about clothes, shoes, knick-knacks, boats, cars, or any other kind of physical thing.  It's about being together and loving the other person. Get your eyes back on the "prize."  

I can honestly say that all of the "poor" people I've ever known were generous. They didn't have much, but they were always happy to share what they had.

Wealthy people, on the other hand are constantly faced with the issue of "who's handling their money."  Are they being ripped-off?  What kind of people are "benefitting" from the taxes they pay?  Simply put, the more people have, the more they worry about who's doing what with it, or who might be somehow "benefitting" from it that they don't think are "worthy."

If a hurricane or a flood suddenly wiped away all of your worldly possessions and I asked you if that meant you were finished as a couple, you'd undoubtedly answer,"Oh, hell no…..we love each other.  Those were just 'things.'"  Yeah, now that they're gone, they're just "things," but what about when you were surrounded by those "things?" 

As human beings, it's natural to become "accustomed" to higher and higher levels of living.  It "feels" good.  It's comforting to have a "nice home," drive a new car and eat something besides Kraft Dinner or Hamburger Helper.

Well, when we got married, we ate plenty of that stuff, and we were happy.

Now that we're retired, we may go back to eating some Kraft Dinner more often than going to a restaurant with "ambiance" for fettuccine. But we'll be happy.

Because we're lovers.

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