Saturday, April 16, 2011

No Wonder 50% of Marriages End in Divorce

Marriage is hard. Add a child to the mix, and it's even more difficult. My husband and I have been married for nearly 13 years, and let me first set the record straight that we're not getting divorced. (Not today anyway.) But that's not to say he doesn't drive me absolutely insane. I'm sure you'd be shocked to learn I'm not always so delightful to be around, and I drive him crazy too; however, this is my blog so I won't bore you with those details. 

What I will tell you about are the times when I think I might actually lose it completely, like when it's his turn to clean up the dinner dishes, and he thinks rinsing and stacking them in the sink will suffice. I can't stand it when he doesn't empty his pockets, and I wash random items left in his pants. When he takes the initiative to throw in a load of laundry they end up mildewing in the washing machine about forty percent of the time. The other sixty percent they get dried and left to sit and wrinkle themselves to death until I salvage them from the dryer. And of course he and our two-year-old daughter, Ellie, are two peas in a pod so they're already ganging up on me. 

But then my little family and I have a day like today. It began with the planets perfectly aligned because Ellie slept until 8:30 a.m. That never happens! We enjoyed a nice morning, and this afternoon we went to The University of Tennessee's Orange and White Game, the annual inter-squad football scrimmage. Today was super special because not only was it Ellie's first time inside Neyland Stadium, but it was the debut of this year's t-shirt. This t-shirt was designed by the one and only Laddy Fields, my sweetie. I think I may be the only person in the history of Tennessee Football to ever tear up at the Orange and White Game. I'm pretty sentimental anyway, but today made me really misty-eyed.

Laddy and I married at a young age. We did the whole crappy apartment/multiple crappy jobs thing for a while. Laddy is the smartest person I know (although for some reason he can't manage to sort his clothes into the four color-separated hampers we have), but after college he hadn't decided what he wanted to do yet. Really, when you think about it, who has? At today's game I vividly remembered the night we sat in our tiny apartment in Bristol. It was the night before his interview for his first design job. I'm not sure what he'd written in his cover letter, but I recall it being very late and him being stressed to come up with an entire portfolio. Everything he knew at the time (and for that matter what he knows today) has been self-taught. He had a few books out that night trying to figure it out, and I hung around for moral support. I'm not quite sure how he got that job. I figure it was part luck, part skill, part charm and part divine intervention. 

Fast forward about 10 years and five increasingly awesome design jobs later, and there we sat watching his design on the jumbotron. I can't imagine being any prouder. Every artist in the state and beyond would love to have designed UT's Official Fan T-shirt for 2011, but it was my husband who was sought after. It was honestly emotional for me in a weird way. It's like we'd hit some sort of milestone. For as many times as we have no idea what we're doing or where we're going, I had peace that whatever happens, we're going to be okay. Mostly because we have each other, flaws and all.

It made me see how far we've come in a decade. We've moved to Knoxville, become home owners, adopted a dog and had a baby. We've been through a lot, both good and not as good, and we've been extremely blessed. And I'm going to do my best to hang onto this zen feeling, at least until mid-week when Laddy will forget to replenish the toilet paper.


  1. Congratulations to the both of you! How exciting! I hope you continue to have a wonderful weekend!

  2. Thanks so very much, Kathy! I hope so too! : )

  3. Love your blog will watch for the next one & congratulations Laddy!!

  4. Thank you for hope and encouragement on a day where I feel my husband and I will always be "just starting out."

    And Laddy's design might just inspire me to wear orange instead of black supporting UT this season. Congratulations!

  5. Hey, LaRae! Thanks for your sweet words! Hang in there. I think marriage gets easier and then harder and then easier again on and off forever.

    It's great to hear from you! You should let me know when you're in Knoxville again. I'd love to see you and catch up. :)

    Oh, and thanks for the compliment on Laddy's shirt. I like it a lot too! Take care!

  6. For anyone interested in getting this year's Official Tennessee Football T-shirt, designed by Laddy, it's now available online: