do you fight on your anniversary?

On an anniversary trip…you don’t want to fight. Or bicker. Or find something you’ve decided you absolutely MUST ASK your husband…even though you ALREADY KNOW the question will result in a knock-down-drag-out.

Leave it alone. Bring it up on the way home.

BUT DON’T RUIN THE TRIP.

Those words…should have been said to me. Someone should have given me a little manual of THINGS NOT TO DO WHEN CELEBRATING AN ANNIVERSARY.

Because it would have changed the lasting memory of this trip.

The memory where I managed to create World War III in the spab of a few miles on a peaceful, serene path where you’re supposed to enjoy simple pleasures like deer feeding on early morning grasses and birds waking up and the sun peaking through the mountains.

Tim and I had planned this biking excursion to Cades Cove as part of our anniversary trip for months. It was supposed to be seven looped miles of nature. No cars. No highways. Just other nature-loving nuts like us.

We started out just fine…enjoying the deer and the cool, misty morning, working up a sweat on the steep hills.

And then…after a particularly difficult climb, I say to Tim: “Honey, I have a…question…but-don’t-get-mad…”

Whatever the exact wording of that question was…something like, “How do you know you’ll never be unfaithful?” (I know, totally romantic thing to say…) was a HUGE MISTAKE.

It put him on the defensive…and instead of me just shuting up and letting it pass…I kept pushing.

And pushing.

And pushing.

Eventually, Tim went all out ape shit on me. Which…he was probably well within his means to do…after hearing and being expected to answer -repeatedly – a stupid question like that.

We had to keep stopping in the middle of our wild, made-up, completely imaginary accusations to allow people to pass us…because we didn’t want them to know WE WERE FIGHTING.

Though, I’m sure they heard us anyway.

We came up on a clearing with about a dozen deer, eating and watching people pass by. And instead of stopping together to enjoy the peaceful moment, Tim took off on this looooooong downhill, kicking up dirt and gravel all the way.

I watched, thinking how I was going to explain the resulting injury to the doctors in the emergency room…”how’d he end up with a tree branch through his arm?…you say he was fleeing?…because you asked him what?!…unfaithful??…I suppose I don’t exactly blame him.”

I’m not as mountain bike saavy as Tim and there was NO WAY I was tearing down a hill, ending with a sharp right turn. I’d end up over the handlebars in a tree. If he wanted to test his luck, so be it.

So instead I sat there at the top of the hill. With the deer. Wondering if Tim would end up back at the car and decide to leave a note and ten bucks with the ranger for a taxi. The deer kept staring at me like, “You know, it’s YOUR FAULT. Should’ve kept your thoughts to yourself…ruining everybody’s morning like this. I mean, it’s Frank’s first time out since he was almost made road art by a truck and here you are…spoiling his experience.”

Eventually, I made my way slowly down the path. Prepared to finish the trek alone.

And Tim was there. Waiting. Just beyond my line of sight from the top of the hill.

He looked at me all, “What the hell took you so long?”

We finished the rest of the ride in silence. I’d pedal up the hills AS SLOW AS POSSIBLE while Tim would wait at the top, looking down at me all, “STOP PRETENDING. If you were FINE you’d had raced me to the top.”

Which is true. I’m competitive to a fault.

By the time we made it back to the car, we’d seen enough happy couples, cute kids and frollicking wildlife that we couldn’t help but just get over it and apologize.

We managed to get along the rest of the week and chalk it up to no sleep and no breakfast.

But I learned my lesson.

And I refuse to recreate such a catastrophe.

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22 Responses to “do you fight on your anniversary?”


  1. 1 heatherslalaland August 20, 2009 at 5:06 pm

    Awww hon, that’s pretty rough. I think when we put such expectations on something, they inevitably fall short. My birthday is ALWAYS rotten, so I gave up expecting. Expectation is empty.

    Anyway, there’ll be plenty of other anniversaries, which will be much happier, and I’m sure you won’t ask that question again! I hope things are going smoothly again. Which anniversary where you ‘celebrating’?

  2. 3 heatherslalaland August 20, 2009 at 5:07 pm

    Oops excuse my spelling, I meant to say which anniversary ‘were’ you celebrating!

  3. 4 Kara August 20, 2009 at 5:10 pm

    He (and ALL men) need a manual of how to respond to a question like that. It’s on the shelf next to the book titled, “Yes, Honey. You’re Right, I’m wrong.” His answer could have been, “Because you’re the most beautiful woman in the world and all I will ever need.” There. Done. Conversation over and bike ride enjoyed.

  4. 6 heatherslalaland August 20, 2009 at 5:16 pm

    You’re absolutely right! They should know these things, and should be an automatic response. Silly men lol.

  5. 7 ToolBoxGirl August 20, 2009 at 5:23 pm

    As women, we know how to respond to that kind of question. However, men are not women (and we like it that way!) They think and speak in a different language. Just like we do. So pretty much, you spoke Chinese to him and he was like WTF. You learned a very valuable lesson: Don’t Borrow Trouble…

    You would have to learn it eventually…so…better now than never 🙂

  6. 8 ieva {yay-va} August 20, 2009 at 5:44 pm

    good point. On another hand, how do you get around those questions/topics that take over the top of your mind? And most importantly, aren’t you supposed to be honest and open with a person you share your life with…?

  7. 9 heatherslalaland August 20, 2009 at 5:44 pm

    Ouch! Your first? You won’t forget that one in a hurry! There’s plenty of time ahead and it’s early days yet. You’ll learn how to be with each other over time. My partner and I are completely in sync with each other but that only comes over time. We have a great balance and we never argue, but in saying that, we have been together 19 years lol. We should be in sync! Just put it behind you and learn from it. It’s all you can do. Don’t let it eat away at you. What’s in the past should stay in the past.

    How long were you together before marrying?

  8. 11 chrystalrose August 20, 2009 at 7:40 pm

    Oh I looove it!

    Men & women are so weird together. I mean really– all he had to say was “because I know don’t want anyone else but you” or “because you can’t be topped in bed” or whatever…but nooooo! Instead of just LYING TO MAKE US FEEL BETTER or at the very least saying something true and flattering they have to get all their man defenses in a knot.

    And I know where you’re coming from–it’s like the question spills from your mouth just in time to ruin a would-be amazing moment, but you can’t help yourself from asking it because you really want to KNOW the answer or be reassured. Insecurity is sooo sexy!

    But we are the way we are and I’ve told myself a million times “Shut your mouth Chrystal, don’t say it Chrystal, it’ll just cause a fight Chrystal”

    But I do, and expect a different result. And get pissed when it blows up in my face yet again:)

    Thank you, this was a pretty good laugh!

  9. 13 maureenlynn August 20, 2009 at 10:24 pm

    No sleep and no breakfast can definitely make people verrrrry cranky. I know from experience. Glad everything worked out though 🙂

  10. 15 rachellutterman August 21, 2009 at 8:07 am

    Hi, Thanks for stopping by. And yes, we have fought on our anniversary before. In fact this year we did becuase Z decided to go camping the weekend of our anniversary and that pissed me off. Instead of enjoying the Friday he planned for me with jewlery and flowers, I sat in a corner and stewed about what a “jerk” he was and ended up ruining the whole day. Sometimes we are our own worse enemies.

    • 16 Jessica August 22, 2009 at 7:22 am

      rachellutterman: I’d be more than a little bent had that happened to me. We can definitely be our own worst enemies…the bad part is that WE KNOW what we’re doing is going to result in a disaster…

  11. 17 Kid Icarus August 21, 2009 at 8:45 am

    That sounds so familiar! I just got married (like a week ago) and I recall the same thoughts and same catastrophe. I’m glad I’m not the only one. Glad to hear that you made amends with Tim. I’m sure the deer thank you too!

  12. 19 joz1234 August 21, 2009 at 10:56 pm

    ouch. I suspect that hurt him because it made him think you didn’t trust him? I’m sure you do…not questioning you at all, but “ouch.”

    • 20 Jessica August 22, 2009 at 7:05 am

      joz1234: Probably something like that, honestly. Trust is definitely hard to build – and we’ve gotten there…but it took moments like that for the trust to truly “bloom” and flourish.

  13. 21 misscherryred August 25, 2009 at 8:24 am

    My anniversary was on 18th August 2009 and we were in France on a family holiday.

    I spent intermittent moments of time just stood in the garden with tears streaming down my face because I’d started a stupid, stupid argument the night before and my stubborn ass pride wouldn’t back down.

    So, instead of apologising and throwing my arms around him, I contemplated the prospect of spending the rest of my days alone.

    What an awful anniversary and one I don’t ever intend to repeat.

    What caused the argument: my inability to ask a sensitive question with, well, any sensitivity.

    Lesson learned.

    • 22 Jessica August 25, 2009 at 2:28 pm

      misscherryred: OH do I empathize with you. Ouch. It only takes once, though, doesn’t it? And…you can’t get that time back…can’t have a “do-over” ….


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