I wasn’t going to write about the Kardashian divorce. It just seemed too easy a target. But then I reconsidered. After all, when have I ever been above taking a cheap shot on this blog? So I will now pose the question that has America all abuzz to my three faithful readers: What could possibly have happened, in just 72 days, to send this couple straight from the altar to the courtroom?
In the interest of full disclosure, I must confess here that I know next to nothing about the Kardashians or this wedding. I have never seen the reality show (some paint was drying on the house across the street that I thought looked more interesting), have never read the tabloids about them, and had no idea who Kris Humphries was until a few days ago (that one is kind of embarrassing. Really, do I live under a rock? No, just in Eastern Washington.) So I’m hoping some of my more television-savvy faithfuls might be able to answer what will surely become one of the Questions of the Ages: what happened to Kris and Kim? Such potential for eternal bliss shone from the glow of their slightly touched-up faces to the sparkle of Kim’s 20-carat wedding ring. And two bridal gowns? (Or was it three? I get confused.) Obviously, she meant to stick around. Why else the bazillion dollar wedding? Everyone knows that the more you spend, the more you love. How could a relationship with so much promise–not to mention, emotional maturity–take such a hasty downturn?
Since I know so little about the Kardashians themselves, I can only guess what might have went wrong based on the surprises my own first 72 days of marriage held. It was a long time ago, but if I reach far back enough into my memory and dig around a little, I can recall the things that gave me pause just two and a half months into wedded bliss. And after each statement, I invite you to wonder with me: is this what happened to Kim?
What Happened in the First 72 Days of my Marriage
1. The wedding and honeymoon and party-planning were over. I was no longer the Center of the Universe. People stopped showering me with attention and got on with their own lives. Bummer.
2. We were back to school, work, and being flat-broke. Bummer.
3. My husband began consuming Jiffy Blueberry Muffins en force. I had introduced the decadent pastries to him the first week of our marriage, and he started going through at least one mix (half a dozen muffins) per day. It was weird.
4. Like most young wives, I decided it would be a smart move to chop my long hair off–and I mean off— immediately following the wedding ceremony. As I walked through the front door, my kind young husband smiled way too big and said way too loudly, “Yeah! I like it!” Of course he hated it (though he never said, bless him.) Less diplomatic was a woman I barely knew. We met some old friends for dinner one night, at the friends’ parents home, and when I walked through the front door, our friends’ mother shot me–no exaggeration–the dirtiest look anyone has ever given me. I was about to ask her what I’d done to offend her when she shook her head, still glaring at me, and spat out, “That’s the first thing new brides always do–cut off their hair!” She rolled her eyes and grimaced. I saw this woman about twice a decade and had had maybe three real conversations with her in my life, but boy, was she angry. Oh, how I wish I could reply to her now, as a 38-year old, instead of how I did then, as a 22-year old (which was, of course, much too politely.)
5. For reasons long-nested within– and understood only by–the Universe (the same one that had just expelled me from its Center), I felt the need to make a nice dinner for my husband every night, even though he did not expect, or even really want, me to. No matter. I was a wife! I had to cook! Immediately after the wedding, I began cooking every night instead of going to the gym, like I used to. You can guess how great I looked, and felt, just 72 days later. Sluggish and grumpy are understatements.
6. Things I’d always considered cute personality quirks, like leaving water glasses all over the house or writing a check for a dollar seventy-five, were not as adorable as I’d always thought them to be. It puzzled me how, when I was single, I posessed no annoying personal habits whatsoever, but then developed dozens of them the day I moved in with someone else. And the same mysterious change had come over my husband. When had we both become such hard people to live with?
7. Friday night dinner-and-movie dates were promptly replaced by marathon library sessions and midnight grilled cheeses at Dennys. (No regrets here. Dennys practically invented the grilled cheese sandwich. Geeood.)
8. My new short hair and non-gym-attending physique stopped many a handsome young man from flirting with me. I kept telling myself it was the wedding ring that made me invisible, but I had to remind myself that I wasn’t exactly sporting a Kardashian rock; I doubt the glare off my little white diamond was blinding would-be admirers to my beauty. Don’t get me wrong: I didn’t want to flirt with other guys–I loved my own guy! But I wanted other guys to want to flirt with me. How else would I know I still “had it?” (Although I’ve never understood just what “it” entailed for a poor, out of style, virtuous BYU coed. But whatever “it” was, I was sure I’d once had it, and I planned on keeping it.)
9. Upon marrying, other people (i.e., my parents) suddenly expected me to know how to do things I had no way of knowing how to do, such as: balance a checkbook, buy health insurance, and fill out my own financial-aid forms. Geez, people, I was only twenty-two! Wasn’t it enough that I’d finally started returning my library books on time? (The expectations of some parents.)
10. Shaving my legs between October and April, which I had always considered purely optional, now felt like a necessary part of personal grooming. Bummer.
Forget Kim and Kris; I read this list and wonder how any couple can survive what the first seventy-two days throw at them. It’s a wonder that Derrick and I made it ourselves and, against all reasonable speculation, are still together. And still making Jiffy Blueberry muffins. And still not going out on Friday nights. And still trying to figure out our health insurance. Oh, and did I tell you? I’m still shaving my legs in the wintertime. (They say it takes work to keep the passion alive. I’m no frump.)
And as I finish up this post, I feel compelled to wish a happy, long, tedious, flawed, Jiffy-muffin-marriage to you all. May you and your spouse grow wrinkled, chubby, mortgaged and non-Kardashian-like together. I couldn’t wish better for any of us.