How to Not Kill Your Husband 101

I’ve been trying to figure out for the past few weeks how to write this in away that won’t be held against me later on in court, in the strange event that something does actually happen to my husband and for some reason it looks like I did it. Let me preface by saying: I don’t ACTUALLY want to kill my husband. I think that sometimes I get so irritated with him that I think I want to kill him, but I don’t. He’s just happens to be irritating me at that particular point in time and I don’t know how to handle it.

Is this what marriage is? Dealing with someone whom you love so much, yet at the same time can’t stand the sight of, but yet if they weren’t around you’d be sad? Just me? Probably. Lorenzo irritates me sometimes. Half the time I don’t know why, but I just really understand why some women keep cast iron skillets in the house. They are not just for grilled cheese sandwiches. I don’t even know if he knows that I want to strangle him sometimes. I think he does though…I can’t hide my facial expressions.

I asked my sister if she ever felt this way with her fiancé. She agreed. She said she really wants to kill him sometimes, but then she knows she’ll be pissed at him for actually dying so she doesn’t chance it. I remember having dinner one night with another couple, I am not even sure what happened but one minute everything was cool and then the next thing I know my friend is calling her fiancé annoying. He asked what he did, she said, “You’re breathing. You breathing annoys me. Ughh, you’re so annoying.” After a minute, Lorenzo laughed. I looked at him like he was crazy and said, “What are you laughing at? You’re annoying too.” I had to ask my friend who’s been with her husband for a total of 20 years how she doesn’t kill her husband every week. Her answer, with no hesitation: lots of prayer.

Am I just crazy? Seriously, that’s a real question because its like, one minute I love, love, love him, he’s #BAE, and he can do no wrong; and the next I want to throw things at him. Or vice versa; he’ll purposely do things to get under my skin then turn around and be super sweet (usually in the form of getting me food). Maybe I’m just hungry. I don’t know. And I’m about 175% sure I get on his last nerve as well, but if I ask he’ll probably feel like I’m trying to set him up or something, so I’ll never get an honest answer. On a good day.

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If I’m Cursing, I’m Not Trying to be a Lady

I had military training this past weekend and one of my friends was bothering me. When we arrived to our barracks we had to wait for someone to get keys. A friend of mine walked over to me and said:

“The females have to sleep outside” To which I promptly responded, “Fuck that.”

He laughed and said that he can never quite get used to me cursing because even though he knows that I do, that I don’t look like I do so it always throws him off.

I use profanity and I like to use it quite often. I’ve been doing it (properly) since I was 18. I’ve tried to quit in the past, and even had a swear jar at work for a few months (yes… MONTHS)…twice, but I can never seem to kick the habit completely. Why? I guess because deep down I really don’t want to. One of the biggest annoyances I have about it is that when people turn to me and say, “Its not ladylike”, especially coming from someone in the military, because dude…really? If I’m dropping f-bombs like nobody’s business, the LAST thing I’m trying to do is be a “lady”. I don’t know if I ever really was  one, but that’s another story for another day.

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Now don’t get me wrong, I do have some self control. I don’t curse around children or my elders (mother-in-law, my father, older family members/friends), professional settings, etc. so its not that I don’t have enough words in my vocabulary to express what I’m trying to say without cursing, its just something I choose to do. Its something I like to do. Most of the people in my life curse as well, including some coworkers so I am  almost surrounded by people who are fellow profanity users. Which probably doesn’t help…

I think for me that swearing is one of those things that I will just stop doing when I’m just tired of doing it, like when people smoke for 30 years and then just quit cold turkey and never go back. I think for now I still do it for shock value; I get a kick out of the faces that people make when they hear me curse for the first time…or the 70th (some never really get used to it). I always say that if I had my own kid I would finally quit, but then I think about all my friends who curse their kids out on a regular basis. I mean, I learned profanity from MY parents…so there’s that. Oh well.

 

Shout Out My Husband for Being Awesome

I swear that my husband is the most patient man on the planet. He has to be. He’s always calm and even when he is frustrated he doesn’t raise his voice. He’s never overly emotional and he so far above any pettiness that its inspiring for me to stop worrying about things and opinions that don’t matter. But of all that, most importantly, he puts up with me. Every. Single. Day.

Sometimes I feel like I am a walking train wreck. Other times, I feel like I have it all together and I’m the shit and you can’t tell me otherwise. There are days when I get so caught up in my own madness that Lorenzo will stop and ask me, “What are you thinking about?” because my emotions ALWAYS show on my face. Sometimes I wonder what my life would have been like if I never met him. Would I have ever giving up this ridiculous pattern of dating men who obviously didn’t want the same things I wanted? Would I have ever fallen in love again? Would I have ever gotten married?

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Honestly, about a month before I met Lorenzo I’d decided that I was just going to be single for the rest of my life. It wasn’t that I was refusing to date, I just didn’t think there was a man out there for ME-someone who could be compatible with me and my personality that I actually wanted to spend my life with who didn’t get on my nerves. I was even super skeptical of Lorenzo when we met, and it didn’t help that the first 8 months we were dating one of my co-workers almost had me convinced that he was going to kill me (she’s since given up on that idea but I haven’t, he IS a Marine for crying out loud).

Anyway, I’m grateful and blessed and happy to have my husband. He’s taught me so much about who I wanted to be, just by being himself. His maturity level is on 98 (he has his petty moments), he taught me what it feels like to have someone take care of me without wanting anything in return. He holds me accountable, challenges me, and doesn’t tolerate any of my crap. He’s never disrespectful and his communication skills are immaculate. Having a chance to know the people in his circle has helped me pick better friends- his friends actually help each other in times of need, there is no drama, and they all take care of each other. Its really something to strive for. He’s always really warm and he massages my scalp if I ask. He knows how to cook and doesn’t get all bent out of shape if I want to go shopping.

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Don’t get me wrong, there are times where we end up on the wrong side of each other’s attitude, like when we went to Pappadeaux and bought gumbo and he took mine to work… (*sigh*) but, so far, its nothing we can’t handle. So…shoutout to him.

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Why My Dad is the Coolest

So I was having a conversation with my father a few weeks ago, and he just reminded me of all the reasons why I always thought he was so cool. My parents had me pretty young; they were barely out of high school at the time. I didn’t realize how young my parents were until I entered college and all of my friend’s parents were 10 and 20 years older than mine. Anyway, I was talking with my Dad about if he would let me take care of him if he’d ever gotten to the point that he couldn’t take care of himself. I asked him if he would trust my decision-making skills when it came to his health and his affairs. He said, “P, I’ve trusted your judgment since you were five years old. I know you wouldn’t do anything to hurt me so yes, I would let you take care of me.”

He says this now, but I remember a time when we almost got into a fight when I wanted to take him to the eye doctor to get his vision checked. He acted like I was taking him to get a seeing eye dog when it turned out all he needed was reading glasses…but I digress. One thing I’ll give him (and my mother) credit for was that they always just encouraged us to be ourselves, whatever that might be. They never tried to force their personal agendas on us.  All my parents wanted for us was to accomplish certain things: graduate high school, go to college, don’t have kids, stay out of jail. Pretty simple list.

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Dad and I (early 80’s and 2015)

My father’s direction growing up was all about school. Up until I entered college all I heard from him was, “Books and boys don’t mix,” and “You don’t need any friends, you need to know your school work,” When I started dating, like for real dating, he pretty much left me alone. I was with a guy for about five years in and after college. My dad never really said much about the relationship, and he was always nice to my ex, so I found it a little surprising when I told him that we were having problems and he basically told me I didn’t have to put up with it. That’s when I knew he was only nice to my ex because he thought I was happy. Once it showed that I wasn’t, he was completely supportive of my decision to break up with him (and he took it as a personal opportunity to roast my ex- yes, my father can be very petty at times). I knew then that I could talk to him about anything.

 
Because he’s a pretty simple guy, my siblings and I try to take him out to different places to do and try different things. He isn’t very accepting of change; up until about 2009 he still walk around with a cassette player until my sister got so fed up she bought him an iPod. We did the same thing with a smart phone and a tablet. The only high tech stuff he likes is music equipment and video games, so we always pitch in and buy him tech related gifts for his birthday (much to my step-mother’s protest). My next biggest challenge is getting him to visit me here in Atlanta. He hates to fly, and I’m trying hard to convince him that it’ll be so much easier to spend less than 3 hours on a plane than spending 15+ hours in a car.

Wish me luck.

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Dad and I (on a random outing)

 

 

 

A New Year Ahead

Let me start off by start off by saying I know how late into the month is to still sit here and talk about moving into a new year. I think being punctual is something I should start working on (I used to be good a it, not sure what’s happening now). Happy New Year! I hope everyone enjoyed their holidays and rang in the new year the best way they know how.

I ended up spending the majority of December in New York and New Jersey with my friends and family. I went to work the entire time, stayed with my sister for a week and then Lorenzo came up and we stayed at a hotel for the remainder of the trip. I got to see my girlfriends, found out one of them is pregnant (yay!) and spent a little time with my coworkers (who all seem to think that no matter how much time I spend up there, that its never long enough. Aren’t they sweet?).

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View of 6th Ave, NYC

 

Normally when I’m there, I like to do the major touristy stuff: go to Rockefeller Center to see the tree, go to Macy’s to see the Christmas displays, etc., but this time I took Lorenzo to see the Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall. It was a first for me as well, and since I found the tickets on sale I thought it was ideal. Lorenzo said he enjoyed the show (even though I could have sworn I caught him sleeping). Anyway, I decided that I wasn’t going to make any resolutions this year, because I always make too many that I NEVER keep because I always forget what they are. I usually say stuff like “I’m going to stop cursing this year,” and not even 30 minutes later I’m dropping F-bombs like nobody’s business. Or “I’m going to read more” and then that ends up being the semester that my teachers want me to write my own text book. So, its safe to say I’m done with resolutions.

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Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Center

 

Lorenzo and I will be moving at the end of the month, a temporary relocation until we can find something else. We are looking at homes so hopefully by the end of the year, or maybe the summer, we will homeowners. This is something I think is actually achievable, A) because I know how thorough Lorenzo is when he wants to do something and how determined I am when I have a goal and B) because we’ve already been looking since last year and we now have a realtor to help out.

Lorenzo always entertains the idea of moving to New York, much to my protest. He feels like, if he finds a job there then we should definitely go (especially since my job is already there). I always protest because I’m from NJ, I’ve spent over 30 years there and over 8 working in New York City…I’m pretty  much over shoveling my car out of 4 feet of snow in the winter. I will take an Atlanta “snowstorm” any day. Hell, its the middle of January and it was 70 degrees the other day! Are you kidding me? So what I do to try to deter him is, whenever we are looking up houses online I will take the price of a home in Atlanta and then take that same dollar amount and show him what he could get in any of the 5 Boroughs. It always gives him a slight reality check…temporarily.

I am curious to see what this year will bring. I will hit 18 years with the Army in a few months (I shake my head in disbelief every time I think about it). I really want to try to get promoted one more time before I retire. I also want to do another 5K this year. I think my job has one, so I may have to fly back up to participate. Maybe I’ll do more than one this year. I won’t be finished with school this year, but I’m going to keep going until I’m done, no matter how long it takes.

 

 

 

Marriage Advice Gone Wrong

People love giving their opinions, even if you never asked for it. I used to be like that, but I had to learn to keep my 2 cents to myself unless I was asked. This way, if I said something they didn’t like, I could always follow up with, “Well, you asked!”. As I got older, I had to learn to take things with a grain of salt. Then I started paying attention to the people I was listening to, and that’s when I started ignoring folks all together. Why? Because people don’t know what they’re talking about! Your girlfriend/BFF who is never in a relationship or can’t keep one but always giving you relationship advice? Yeah, you shouldn’t listen to her. The guy who constantly cheats on his wife but tries to tell you what he thinks about marriage? Nope, you shouldn’t listen to him either. And you probably shouldn’t take financial advice from your adult friend who still sleeps on their parent’s couch and is living check to check but always has designer clothes and always wants to hang out. Just don’t do it.

Fortunately for me, I married a man who doesn’t listen to what other people have to say about his decisions. He knows what direction he wants to go in and doesn’t let other people deter him from his path. If someone presents an idea to him, he asks questions- lots of questions, before he would even consider it. When Lorenzo and I were dating, we were living in 2 different states. He relocated to Atlanta from Albuquerque, while I remained in New Jersey. Needless to say, there were a lot of people (read: men) who were trying to convince him to date as much as he can and play the field – even though he and I were already committed to each other. Not gonna lie, I got some crazy advice from people after we got engaged as well. Here is some of the craziest we’ve heard:

Don’t get married. Lorenzo had other men say this to him. Why? Because they felt like since he was young, successful, and childfree that the LAST thing he should do is settle down. They wanted him to go around and sleep with as many women as he could – because honestly, that’s what they would do. A lot of those guys had dead end jobs with a kid or two by multiple women and had their wages garnished due to child support payments. But maybe if they weren’t sleeping around so much and having kids they would have extra money to…oh, well never mind.

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Let yourself go. Multiple women have said this to me. I was shocked because I didn’t think people actually did that; I thought it was a joke. I used to look at them and think to myself, “You can’t be serious.” I didn’t keep myself in shape just to “catch a man,” I’m in the military so I have to stay in shape and honestly, I actually give a shit about my health, so no, I won’t be doing that.

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Marriage is boring. Or, “you won’t get to do things you like to do.”  I don’t understand this one. Is everyday supposed to be a party? If you’re so bored, why don’t you plan a trip or an outing or something? I can understand not having a whole lot of time to indulge in your hobbies if you have kids but if you don’t, why can’t you? I don’t get it. Someone will have to explain this one to me.

Don’t tell your husband about all of your purchases. So, lie to him? To me, this means that he can turn around and do the same thing by keeping things from me. Why would I want to do that? I’m a pretty financially savvy person, so I know better than to spend rent money on a new purse or make a major purchase when we are trying to save for a house. No thanks, I’m not trying to cause arguments intentionally.

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I’m sure that folks have the best intentions when they offer advice, but I realize many of them speak from their own experiences rather than placing themselves in the other person’s shoes; and just because its something you’ve gone through or would do yourself doesn’t mean its the best thing for ME. If we’d listened to everything other people told us to do we’d be arguing all the time just to prove we don’t have secrets, we would’ve bought a house in a not so great neighborhood and another house that we didn’t like just to live next to people that I didn’t know. We also would’ve had a kid just because someone Lorenzo worked with was pregnant, also someone I don’t know; and went into debt planning our wedding. Lorenzo would have taken jobs that wouldn’t have helped his career and I would nag him and start arguments about next to nothing, just to do it.

The moral of this story: people sometimes give shitty advice, not just about marriage, but about life in general. I think people should consider the person they are getting advice from and always do what they think is best for them. That other person who has so much to say about your life doesn’t have to deal with the consequences of what is ultimately YOUR decision. Listen, but with caution.

 

 

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Lorenzo’s Family Reunion

Lorenzo and I spent the weekend in Raleigh, North Carolina with his maternal family for their 4th family reunion. I think it was cool to attend since I didn’t get a chance to attend my father’s family reunion earlier this year due to the date being the same time as my military training event. I already know most of his mother’s siblings, his first cousins, and their kids, but at the reunion, there were other extended family members as well. This included his grandfather’s siblings and their families.  The guest of honor was his great-grandmother Sue who was born sometime in the 1800’s and passed away in 1951. Sue had 8 children, one of whom was Lorenzo’s grandfather and only one of Sue’s children remains alive today.
Because Lorenzo had to work, we didn’t leave on time, so we didn’t get a chance to go to the meet-and-greet on Thursday night. Friday morning we met up at his uncle’s house for breakfast, and I got a chance to meet his cousins that live on the west coast in California and Phoenix. Everything was fine until I was completely thrown off by the entrance of an older woman who greeted me by saying, “Are you the baby mother?” I attempted to say, “Huh?” and “Who?” at the same time. Lorenzo’s cousin laughed and his aunt Barbara stepped in and saved me by explaining that I was Lorenzo’s wife. No sooner did the words leave her mouth did another woman walk and ask me the same exact question in the same direct tone. I had no idea who’s baby mother I was supposed to be, but I guess they had to check to make sure. I later found out they were the descendants of Lorenzo’s, grandfathers’, brother (confused yet?), or something like that. They are twins in their early  70’s, both named Gloria, and they both tried to get me extremely drunk that night after the banquet.

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Here are few things I’ve learned about true southerners since I’ve been with Lorenzo:

•They like to do things on their own. Paying for convenience is almost a crime- Lorenzo’s mother is still hesitant to pay for bottled water, and Lorenzo insists on chopping his own wood (and we don’t even have a fireplace).

•Sweet Tea is a staple. Well, tea period. If you don’t drink sweet (or unsweet) tea, something is wrong with you.

•Also pork. The only justifiable reason to not eat pork is because you have hypertension…and not even then.

•They like to make their own alcohol. I know we are all aware of moonshine but this weekend I’ve actually had homemade wine. Yes, you read that correctly.

•You have to learn to translate some of the terms. I already knew that some pronounce “children” like “chill-ren” or “chill-en” because that’s how my grandmother says it but the new one for me was, “have some sit down.” It means, “please have a seat.”
But I did have a wonderful time. Friday night there was a banquet where we dressed up and honored the family members over 70, and on Saturday we went to Pullen Park for lunch and other activities that the kids could enjoy, like a carousel, train ride around the park, and paddle boating in the lake. Sunday was a travel day for everyone, so we had to say our goodbyes on Saturday night.
I know Lorenzo had a great time as well. He already wants to make more time to go back home (to South Carolina) to spend more time with his cousins and their children. It would be a great way to end the summer since I think I’ve spent a total of 3 weekends in Atlanta together since June (that last sentence had a lot of sarcastic undertones just in case no one caught it).

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