How Do You Know?

I apologize for the lack of posting lately. I’ve had a lot on my mind.

The Lady Friend and I have been together for a little over a year now. A few months ago we had a conversation that was a little shocking. Pretty much out of the blue she said something to the effect of “You’re the man I want to marry.”

Once she made up her mind, she saw no reason to delay. She swears the biological clock didn’t have any effect on her decision that I’m the man for her, but willingly admits that it’s partly why she wants to get married quickly. Unfortunately for her, my baggage is a lot heavier than hers. I’ve had a relationship or two go off the rails with very little warning, so I told her she was going to have to wait a little while before I was ready to pick out rings and guest towels.

Ever since then I’ve been pondering it. How do you know when the time is right to get married? It’s not just a question of love. I’ve known that I love her for a long time now. My heart is ready to go, but my head insists on being practical. Some of the things to consider……

  • Do I want to become a father soon? (I can’t say my biological clock is ticking, but I don’t want to be paying college tuition in my golden years. So if there are kids to be had, it’s going to be soon.)

  • Can I handle being broke again? (Kids are expensive, and it’s a package deal for her. She also doesn’t want to work while they’re babies, so no more Xbox or nice vacations.)

  • Do I want to become a dog owner? (Usually fun, but makes vacations tricky and I don’t have the stomach for picking up dog poo.)

  • Do I want to move to Old Hickory? (Her house has a fenced yard for the aforementioned dog but the commute is painful and selling my condo this soon is going to cost me.)

  • Can I get along with her family and her with mine? (That question has been answered now that Thanksgiving is past. Definite trial by fire for both of us.)

  • Can a practical engineer and a free thinking artist get along in the long term? (I think so. Mostly because her father was an engineer, and enough of his practicality rubbed off on her for us to understand each other.)

  • Am I okay with marrying a teacher? (It sucks getting up at 530 AM all summer and watching her sleep in. Not to mention going to bed at 10 PM when she’s just getting started. And I worry about her when she’s at work. Her school isn’t one of the better ones in Metro.)

In the end, I’m sure I’m going to get married. But in the mean time I feel a little dizzy. I think at some point you just have to go for it. Any of you married or divorced folk have helpful insight? I won’t turn away helpful insight from single people either.


Blogger saraclark said...

I have asked the Other Half many times, "How did you know", "What Made you Decide" "Why"? He just always says because he knew, and that was that. I have no idea. I would say to make sure that on a basic level that you can be best friends. If you have that, you can work with a lot of the other stuff that will come along. Also, no matter what you think you want to do in a relationship or down the long haul, it all evolves and changes. Compromise for both people is what makes a working relationship and your first year of marriage is one big compromise.

10:26 AM, December 01, 2006  
Blogger Exador said...

I think a good question to ask is, Would you rather do stuff with her than anybody else? That goes beyond, "She likes football too". I don't mean "she wants to go to the game". I mean "I'd rather go to the game (or out drinking, or to the gym, or on a road trip) with her than anyone else.

4:27 AM, December 02, 2006  
Anonymous B-Dub said...

I've been divorced 3 times so I have no great advice for you. But, I can tell you that your questions are all right on the money.

If you get favorable answers from yourself to those, you're in good shape.

3:27 PM, December 05, 2006  
Blogger Michael said...

Here's the thing--we've all had relationships that ended badly. Pretty much when we ask someone out, we'll rolling the dice because odds are, it's not going to end well. But we always have such hope in the beginning..and you know, for every three or four that fail, it's all worth it when you find the one that works and is right for you. At least that's what I hear, since I'm still single...though those romantic comedies I've been forced to see make me think it's great.

Anyway, I think one big thing has been covered here...if she's the one you want to tell first about your greatest successes and your worst moments, that might be a huge indicator. And while I can say that having an Xbox and all those toys is cool, they can't be there to smile at you and hug you when you succeed beyond your wildest dreams or to give you a hug and a shoulder to cry on when you're down. I know I've recently faced the death of my grandfather and while I had my family there, I felt a bit alone...my mom has my dad, my sister her husband and me....I've got them, but it's different. I want my best friend..I want that friendship set on fire. And I want to give that to someone.

I think you're right to be sure...but don't spend some much time questioning it that you lose a great thing....

5:33 PM, December 10, 2006  

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