Alana had to go to Hollywood for a business trip. She left on Monday morning, which is harder than it sounds! She likes to sleep a little later than 5:30 AM on most days, so getting up that early was a challenge for her. I promised her I’d help her get out the door on-time, so I jumped out of bed at 5:30 ready to help her with her luggage. She told me to go back to bed, but I just kept saying, “but I promised to help you!” She explained that she still had to wash her face and do her hair and that I just needed to go back to bed. So I did that and fell asleep until she was ready to walk out the door at 6:50. I again jumped out of bed to help her with her luggage only to be told that she already took it to her car! So my help consisted of waking up twice when I wasn’t needed and walking her to the door when she had to go.
Here’s our daily routine in a nutshell – I come home at around 5:30 every day, we spend 15 minutes or so reconnecting, we have dinner, and then she sends me to my man cave by saying “Go to your hole!” We then spend the rest of the evening mostly by ourselves, but with frequent visits on commercial breaks. Sometimes, she joins me in the man cave for a TV show of her choosing. We have a great system that encourages freedom with periodic togetherness.
Now that she’s gone from Monday through Thursday, I get to do whatever the hell I want! If I want to leave a light on in a room I’m not in, I’m going to leave the damn light on! If I want to pee with the door open, I’m going to pee with the damn door open! I might even leave the damn seat up! I’m a rebel! On a recent phone call, she asked me if I turned on the air conditioner. I said, “It’s March! I opened the damn windows!” What the hell is wrong with that woman?
So Monday night arrives and I have the house to myself. What did I do? I mowed the lawn! That took less than an hour, I then had dinner, surfed the web, and watched TV in the Cave. Even though I could have watched TV wherever I damn well pleased, I was still in the Cave! Going upstairs periodically made me remember she wasn’t there.
Tuesday, I spent the evening going to trivia at the Village Tavern in Montgomery. You would think that I am doing that because she is gone and I “get to go out.” When she’s home, she will wish I would stay home but she never complains when I go out. Most of the time, I would rather stay home with her rather than drag her out somewhere she won’t enjoy as much as I will. The one place I know she’ll usually go is Go Bananas Comedy Club which is where we had our first date and it’s always a good time. I came home Tuesday night and I wasn’t able to tell her about my trivia expertise!
Wednesday night is always my run with Team in Training. She is usually out on Wednesdays going to her tennis lessons, so we aren’t together until 9:00 or so. This particular Wednesday, I was home early because no one I was running with wanted to go out for a beer! I came home, had some dinner, went to my Cave and watched TV.
She comes home on Thursday and she’ll be there when I get home. When I get home, I’m going to tell her, “Bitch, you better step off – I’m going to do what I want! And then I’ll make her dinner. We’ll reconnect for maybe 20 minutes this time, and she’ll say, “Go to your hole!” But this time, I’ll know that she’ll be there when I come upstairs. It’s pathetic, I know, but I’m still gonna do what I damn well please! I just damn well please want to hang with my baby!
Everyone says you don’t really get to know someone until after you live with them. You can take that two ways. One, the person you’re dating will reveal her true self after living with her for a while. Two, she’s going to find out about my true self too! That’s kind of scary! Only I know my true self and I’m my worst critic, so how can I let her see that guy? You are always on your best behavior during the dating stage. The gentleman opens the door for the lady, you call if you’re going to be late, you’re always in a good mood, and the most important rule is, NO belching or farting!
Alana and I spent a few dates in that “polite” stage, then we spent some time telling each other our deepest, darkest secrets. I think she was telling me what she thought would scare me away. This just caused me to tell her things I thought would scare her away. I found out rather quickly that she accepted me flaws and all, and I accepted her without judging her. We had this mutual, unspoken, agreement that we were getting and giving a new start to each other. It was like getting a do-over! The funny thing is, this acceptance of each other created a bond very quickly. We entered the “impolite” stage soon thereafter. That’s when I found out that you keep a woman who won’t fart in front of you, yet who laughs at my farts! Her laughter is what has saved her from the dreaded Dutch Oven.
As soon as I moved in, she did everything she could to make me feel at home. She helped set up the Man Cave in the finished basement. Then I found out that she sends me to The Cave so she can watch TV alone! This really is a good thing. I’d rather watch the shows I like and not be forced to watch The Bachelor in order to compromise with her! Every so often, I’ll go upstairs just to say hi. She is genuinely happy to see me every time. Forced togetherness causes resentments. Being able to be home with her while doing what I like to do without her makes me want to be with her more! This reminds me of one of my favorite sayings – “how can I miss you if you won’t go away?” Our “alone” time makes our together time all the better.
There are many things I’ve learned about her since moving in. Whenever I do something that makes her laugh, she makes me do it again. She’s like a little kid saying “do it again, do it again!” So I do it again and she laughs harder than she did the first time. There are things I have repeated for months now just because it makes her laugh! Because she is so competitive about everything, I’ve also learned to let her win most of the time! She has found out that I sometimes need to vent about something that frustrated me. She listens and understands my venting has nothing to do with her – I just need someone to care that I’m frustrated. She makes these faces and says “you’re scaring me, Baby.” I know she’s joking and that helps defuse the situation. She realizes that once the venting is done, I’m happy again.
Life with me can’t be a bed of roses, but it’s been pretty spectacular so far! We have so much respect for each other that when disagreements or misunderstandings occur, we work them out very quickly. She figured out the trick to staying happy with me is to not take me too seriously. I figured out the trick to staying happy with her is to just let Alana be Alana. We fell in love with each other after we allowed each other to just be ourselves. Neither of us wants to change anything about the other. I guess that means no matter what else we learn about each other over the rest of our lives, that’s going to be okay too!