After being home for months on end, and being way too scared of this virus to consider going out and celebrating at a real restaurant, my husband and I marked the occasion of our fifth wedding anniversary from the comfort and safety of our couch this weekend. We joked that we'll probably still be there for our fifteen year anniversary in December, but secretly I'm sure we both want this to be over so we can leave the house.
I'm coming out of the weekend really refreshed and happy, which is pretty typical. In the pre-pandemic times, before the Ups and Downs, I enjoyed weekends, but they drained me. One day was usually spend running around all over town picking up items we needed for the week, going to parks and the library, and taking our three year old to swim class. We'd catch up on massive loads of laundry and try our best to tidy the house, but by Monday we were usually ill prepared to start the work week and always playing catch up.
Things are slower now. Laundry gets done on demand because we're always here. We have a ritual of cleaning up from the day as soon as the kids go to bed, which helps us stay somewhat on top of things. Anything extra, though, usually gets put off. Those things tend to pile up and stress me out, like our emergency groceries.
We ordered a stockpile of shelf stable foods a few weeks ago, when states started talking about opening up. We felt like we got caught pretty unprepared for the initial lock down, barely having enough toilet paper and having a real struggle for weeks to find it, so for our peace of mind we decided to get an emergency stash built up. So, I ordered the groceries, and because it's hard to put everything away when you're both working and taking care of kids, these items sat in the garage for weeks. I mean, we were stepping over them every day to grab strollers and miscellaneous items we keep in the garage, and it finally hit a breaking point for me.
So, to kick off our anniversary date night, my husband and I cleaned our garage. We put some music on, turned up the baby monitor, and worked together for a common goal. We organized things into clear containers so we could see everything, and we put it all away. It took thirty minutes. We even joked that de-cluttering projects are our love language. It's true, though. We have been on a kick since about January to really optimize our life so we can spend more time relaxing with our kids, so anything we can do to help keep things running smoothly is a top priority. I've even joked to my friends that because we're both in fields that are project driven, we run our marriage like project managers, having financial meetings monthly and emotional scrums. It's funny, but it works.
I think in times like this, it's especially hard to keep relationships sailing on smooth grounds. People are locked in their homes, constantly on top of each other with no breaks, and resentment and exhaustion can really tear you down. It can even be hard to do things that are fun, because it's such a serious time, but we're not going to get through this as a society unless we find some joy in this situation. I found a lot of joy organizing our emergency food stash this weekend, and whether or not that makes me weird, it definitely makes me happy.