If you know me, you know I am very competitive. The possibility of beating a perceived challenge is pure motivation. So today is our 21st wedding anniversary and — DRUMROLL PLEASE — according to the statistics, Steve and I are marriage champions! The average American wedding ends in divorce in a mere 8.2 years (or weirdly, 12.2 if you’re a New Yorker).
All joking aside, this dismal statistic causes a swell of sorrow. We cannot imagine what our lives would be if we had checked out at year 8; we would have missed the most outstanding parts! If I sound overly optimistic or traditional, it’s only because holding on to this relationship has enriched the quality of life. That said, we had a fight this summer that felt monumental. It was immensely frustrating and took a solid week to negotiate. I found myself wishing that we were all much franker about what it takes to remain married — joyfully, without killing each other. For this reason, I am highlighting 5 traits that make our marriage robust for two decades and counting.