Today would have been that day. The tin anniversary. The one that surely would have been punctuated by a weekend trip to Savannah or Atlanta or the Keys. Where I would have spent too much on a pair of diamond earrings just for the look on her face.
Ten years is a long time. I thought we had it in the bag. It was a done deal. 10, 20, 30, 50, 75. Piece of cake.
I had to look through my blog archives to figure out what we did for our five-year anniversary, and due to her work and travel schedule keeping her away for almost three weeks in a row, we did absolutely nothing. That was part of the issue. At first, I hated those long work trips, leaving me alone with the dog, lonely and bored. But over time, very gradually, I began to anticipate her trips. I would count on them – that was my time to relax and do what I wanted to do. I would encourage her to travel more and more, just so I could have time to be me.
A little honesty and communication would have gone a long way towards that issue. It’s my fault that I wasn’t willing to open that dialogue and that I continued to push for us to lead our separate lives, and I accept responsibility for that. Taking responsibility is something that I’ve come to learn in the last few years, and I’ve realized that I needed to take a lot more, both in my marriage and outside of it. It used to scare me, that idea of being responsible for the negative things that happen, for the bad choices that are made, but now I realize it’s just part of being human. You don’t need to hide all of the bad things in order to truly enjoy the good.
Had I acted honestly and told her how I felt, would I be celebrating with her today? I don’t know – probably not. But I’ll never know. And while I am at peace with that, with the potential that any tin anniversary I may ever have (or any anniversary, for that matter) will be with someone else, there will always be that small part of me that feels like a failure.