Saturday, 28 September 2013

The Time, It Flies!

It's so refreshing just to be able to sit here and type away. While dodging time traps, the Potentis have been spending a lot of time with friends and family. Birthdays abound at the end of September (tee hee, we know what your parents were doing in December) and it was also our ninth wedding anniversary. Nine years!

It's easy to not find time for reflection on the past when one is so busy living in the present and thinking about the future. At the eight year mark our wedding photos finally found their way out of a shoebox and into an album! Life is so comfortable now that it's easy to forget how hard it was ten years ago we went for broke to buy our house. I was on the verge of being laid off, Jack had already been laid off. We looked at each other, realized our nerd love was strong enough to withstand anything, and took up our new hobby of riding life's rollercoasters. Sorry, that was a really bad metaphor. We actually bought our house on Valentine's Day while we both had colds. I remember lying in bed afterwards, waiting for Nyquil to kick in, and feeling dizzy. Had we done the right thing? Was this the right house? We weren't even married!

My parents, being the Old Country type, had thought it was a big mistake. I was ruining my life and throwing away my money. It caused a lot of tension because I was still living at home. My Dad poorly translated an idiom that resulted in Jack being called a bread basket almost constantly ("What does that even mean?" "I have no idea!"). Their fear was understandable. Trusting someone with your heart and your savings is every parent's worst nightmare. Instead of seeing the Big Adult Decision you are embarking on, they picture headlines involving cheating hearts and bankruptcy. Then, around the same time we were pledging our love, Mr. Potenti's own parents were getting a divorce after 33 years. Would we end up like them? A tub of Rolaids couldn't soothe our jitters.

It's not possible to predict the future. If it was, well...we'd all be Microsoft millionaires and we would forgo that extra burrito at Taco Bell. We can only make the best choices possible at the time when they are made - and continue to work hard to keep them on track. And if it turns out to be a mistake - well, it's something learned. Sometimes you have to go through the bad to get to the good. And the shocking thing is that most of the bad is pretty temporary - we both found new jobs within two years and the days of eating hot dogs and beans slid by. My in-laws married new partners and are happier than before. "Bread basket" hasn't been heard since 2005. That whole period of our lives seems so strange, and hard to believe it happened.

It took another year after buying our home to make our love official with $250 worth of rings and a $75 piece of paper. My wedding dress was $50 off the discount rack at Sears, our place of vows a public garden rented for $300. The cake was just a sheet cake from Costco. An old co-worker took the photos and a talented friend played the keyboard. My mother cried and our friends were happy for us. It wasn't fancy, but it did the job - and nine years later I love my husband more than ever.

I couldn't even afford a manicure then...ah well.