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A Blessed Fifteen Years

by Chava Tombosky

January 20, 2010 | 5:07 pm

**Today I am married fifteen years. That’s more than a decade! As my cousin Valerie reminded us, it is “half a lifetime.”  Fifteen years is half of thirty. It is five years away from twenty!  (incase you can’t add) It is a HUGE number.

The last time I remember feeling I’ve really accomplished anything that required more than a decade of time commitment was when I graduated high school. That only took twelve years. I guess you can consider it thirteen if you include kindergarten.  Which means, I’ve been married longer than I was in grammar school, kindergarten, and high school put together.

After fifteen years, I have calculated these statistics of our marriage experience:

We’ve had 2 bris’, 1 bar mitzvah, three bio children, 4 foster kids, 2 miscarriages, 8 cars, 6 houses, (we only owned 1 of them), 6 ER trips, 2 emergency surgeries, 7 family deaths, 3 family divorces, 12 jobs between us, 4 state moves, 1 out of country vacation, at least two dozen family vacations, 11/2 plants, and two fish. (I say half because the first plant was half dead when I gave it away- so technically it could still be alive somewhere.)

The first fifteen years of marriage have been filled with firsts. First pregnancy, first birth, first night, first morning,  first time we dropped our child off at school, first house we bought, first house we sold, first job. The list is endless. But the next phase, the next fifteen years are going to be a whole bunch of seconds. Which means we get to do things all over again but this time, do it seasoned.

This time we’ll make better choices and live life on our terms not on anyone else’s. This next fifteen (I only say we’re having fifteen more, not as a prerequisite of ending things at year thirty, but since we’re talking in phases of fifteen, I figured it’s apropos) we are going to have the best time, cause we look better, we act better, we’re all over better people. 

The first thing on the agenda to this half a lifetime celebration is to change some of our furniture.  Every piece we have in our home was given to us by family members who moved, divorced, or died and needed to give away their leftovers to the couple who just got married, being us. Some of our pieces have no style except the style of mismatched, on sale, child friendly, Ikea-built drab. 

I’d like our home to finally reflect our personalities. Now that we know what those personalities are.  When you get married in your teens, you don’t fully know yourself. And now that we are no longer teenagers,  I can say that I do know myself, I know my husband, and he knows me, which means we need a sofa to reflect that.

For those of you looking for traditional-styled cherry wood bed frames, maple bedroom sets, or TV armoires, please inquire.

Next on the agenda is to work on date night. Last night we went to a King’s hockey game. Maybe we’ll try going to more theater, or attend the symphony.  (Who am I kidding? We hate the symphony.) Make that a rock concert. We’ll go to rock concerts. (Jewish ones)

We’re going to change our health habits and work out more, and sleep less, make love more, and cry less, and laugh more, and eat better, and do everything that you do when you get a divorce.  Except, we’re not getting divorced. We’re just divorcing ourselves from the last fifteen years of our firsts. And I am so excited to enter the next fifteen years of our seconds, without the fits, without the bad furniture, and without the hassle of any overpriced lawyers or expensive ceremonies to commemorate it.

Thank you Robbie for an awesome 15 years! Here’s to another 15 groups of 15 more after that!

**Actually, our hebrew anniversary was yesterday, but since we were celebrating, I didn’t get to post this till today. 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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My Big Fat Jewish life blog is featured in The Huffington Post and The Algemeiner Journal as well as The Jewish Journal. Chava has also written for Farbrengen Magazine, Soul...

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