Thursday, December 11, 2008

Rain, Marriage, Games and Love

I married the man I've been living with last week.  We are both over 50 and neither one of us thought we'd marry again (I had been single for almost 20 years and he over 10).  I think one of the things you bring to marriage later in life is a realization that sometimes there are real periods of boredom and irritation in a relationship that you can get through, and that sex is not as important as you once thought it was.  I am taking so much joy in learning--I think for the first time--what it feels like to have an exquisitely wholesome and pure love for someone that allows for dog days and rain.

Teake likes to play games--scrabble, board games, cards, etc.--and he likes to win.  A few months ago he and another friend of mine who also loves games and is very competitive  were talking about their competitiveness and wondering out loud whether there were any situations where they would allow themselves to lose a game.  My friend, Alexis, remembered when he was playing chess with his dying father.  His father had never beat him at chess, but this day, a few days before his death, he did beat him. At first Alexis insisted he played as hard as he could--that he would never have let his father win, even if he was dying. Then, as an afterthought, he said, "Well, maybe I did lead a little too softly."  Teake countered by talking about how aggressively he played scrabble with his frail and ailing mother, never letting her win a game.  Listening to them, I wondered about our need to win, to best someone, even someone we love, even in death.

I've been lately thinking that marriage is a sort of game, albeit a more serious one, and Teake and I a team playing against some shadowy players we can't see, let's call them Tedium and Firecracker Sex.  

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