We forgot our wedding anniversary!

16 Dec

 

At 11.23pm last night I realised my husband and I had forgotten our wedding anniversary. Three weeks and 8 years ago my husband and I tied the knot at the Park Royal Hotel in Sydney on 30 November. It wasn’t a conventional wedding and we have never been a conventional couple, but our dual ignorance of what should have been at the very least a day of remembrance has left us both a little disturbed.

When I met my husband I was a young, ambitious radio announcer still living at home with Italian parents who tried to be strict. My husband was a separated father-of-two living with his girlfriend wondering how he was going to feed his kids that week. We met at the radio station and horrified everyone by becoming friends and then dating. What we thought would be a short relationship ended up being one full of love and joint ambition. We jumped over so many hurdles and navigated so many obstacles to be together that we are still surprised we made it.

On the outside we look like any hard working, happy family. On the inside that’s exactly what we are, with the added spice of a bankruptcy, our families, our children who have food allergies and our personal unfulfilled ambitions. But we make it work as best we can and we are grateful each day to be together and to have the family we have. I wish he worked less, was more romantic and was more of a hands-on father. He wishes I was more patient about his work hours and had more faith in the fact that he plans on becoming a hands-on father as soon as his work hours allow. Sounds pretty normal, right?

8 years is an achievement for any couple, especially those like us who can say they are happy they met and happier still at the family they created. So why did we forget our anniversary?

The previous year my husband reminded me of our anniversary and the year before we both remembered. The year before that was pretty traumatic but I reminded him. We’ve never both forgotten before. We’ve been busy before. We’ve had newborns, new jobs, stresses, illnesses and other challenges but we’ve never completely forgotten and to have neither of us remember until three weeks later? It’s embarrassing.

After making the realisation while watching a taped re-run of Grey’s Anatomy I tiptoed into our bedroom and told my husband about our forgotten anniversary. He hugged me, kissed me and told me he loved me. He was snoring again before I left the room (he gets up for work at 2.30am). I was left in a state of insomnia, trying to analysis it, as women do.

Here’s my conclusion. There is an anniversary my husband and I are obsessed with and it’s not our wedding anniversary. It is the anniversary of his bankruptcy. He lost his business in the Global Financial Crisis when property values plummeted. We (he) come out of bankruptcy on 16 May, 2012 and we text each other a countdown most days. We were recently elated to discover that we had under six months left. Today we have five months and two days left. We are so excited by the next chapter, after the trauma of having to start over again, not to mention the failed business and all that comes with that. It was heartbreaking, humiliating and scary. But we survived it and are happy enough that we forgot our anniversary and aren’t exactly crying over it.

So here’s to us honey. I wish you smelled better when you got home from work (he’s a transport manager so he smells like sweat, grease and other truck related odours) and I wish I looked better and was more relaxed when you arrive home (by the time he gets home I am dishevelled and chasing after our three children). I love you and I am so happy I met you. You eat all the lollies and leave none for others and you hog all the pillows. But I wouldn’t have it any other way. Let’s try better next year.

La Dolce Vita – Jo Abi

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