Carol and I were crazy about each other. We were great friends and when we fell in love, it was intense. The new romantic relationship high I experienced with her was far beyond any previous relationship I had. What a feeling, when you can’t keep your hands off of her, each kiss leaves you stoned, you spend every moment at your home, school, or job waiting for the next free moment to call or see her.
But it doesn’t last. How can it? We’d never get anything done in life if we felt this way about each other all the time. No, it lasts as long as it needs to for procreation. It’s all just nature at work. And it’s amazing she didn’t end up pregnant with how much we went at it. I later came to learn after our first surprise pregnancy, that she was always very forgetful with her birth control so it could’ve happened at any time. We were just lucky to be married by that point.
Over the next three years, the flames died down to a reasonable level. We brought each other to our respective family functions, we worked at achieving our own goals, we leaned on each other through difficult times. We would try to make time to go on little weekend getaways, to get away from it all and just focus on loving each other.
Carol had a quick temper and it wouldn’t take much to get her yelling. She also had a tendency to do more for other people in her life than they would do for her. I think she liked to show her friendship that way but she also needed some recognition or validation. She would go out of her way to help a friend with a project of some sort but then she would find the favour not returned when she needed help. She was often reduced to tears over this. I can’t count the number of times she’d cry to me over someone and I would hold her and tell her, “It’s okay, honey. It’s okay. You got me. I’m here for you.”
Meanwhile, I began losing direction in my life. My band started to fall apart and I had trouble finding a decent job. When I started dating Carol, I had just gotten through a cycle of depression and alcoholism. Now I was getting back into the same patterns. I had major anxiety and to be able to push through that to perform on stage was a real struggle. It was all starting to wear on me.
It all came to a head when I had a drunken accident that required a trip to the hospital. I hated myself. I cried to Carol about it, about everything going wrong in my life and in my head. I was so humiliated by my actions that I had two choices: kill myself or promise myself never do anything like that again.
I decided that I could get through it if I completely changed right then. I knew that each day I got through put one more day of distance between me and that drunken night. I would keep making it through one day at a time until one day I would find my drunken accident to be just a distant memory from a past lifetime. It worked. I almost lost Carol in the beginning but she stuck with me and saw me become a better man.
I started eating better and began practicing martial arts. I didn’t touch any alcohol for a long time, not until I knew I could be reasonable with it. I let go of my fantasy of being a rock star. I got out of my rut with Carol by my side.
It had been a little over three years when I proposed to her. I still didn’t really know what to do with my life but I knew one thing for certain: I was madly in love with her and wanted her to be my wife.