Both Aaron Traister and his wife forgot what day it was.
I was shopping for dinner on Wednesday when I happened to spy some flowers by the checkout. I thought to myself, “Gee I haven’t bought flowers for Karel in a long time. This will be I nice surprise for her.” As I picked them up, something clicked. I checked my phone and realized it was March 26, our anniversary.
I texted Karel and asked her if she remembered what day it was. I got a text back that said “Oh wow, we totally forgot.”
There were no dramatic last-minute calls to the babysitter, no attempt made for reservations at our favorite restaurant — we’re too tired and broke at the moment to pull off anything that fancy. I made her pizza and gave her the flowers. We crawled into bed together around 8:30.
So there it is: We both totally dropped the ball on remembering our big day. It’s not a major one, 12 years; if i remember correctly that’s considered the “asphalt anniversary.” But still, wow, it’s good thing that I’m married to someone who doesn’t get sensitive about this type of lapse.
The thing that occurred to me as I was driving home with my flowers was that we’ve been married 12 years, and I’m about to be 36. I’ve been married for a third of my life. One-third of my life with the same woman. When we got together the economy was still intact, I had a beeper, ‘N Sync was still together, and the world in general felt like a very different place.
It hasn’t always been easy. Some years, like this year, are especially hard; things like money, mental health, and work pressures can always pop up out of nowhere to put unexpected strain on even the strongest unions. But all things considered, this has been the best third of my life, and I can’t imagine spending the next third of my life with anyone else. Maybe when I’m 48, I’ll be writing an anniversary-inspired open love letter from our hover car while we listen to a Skrillex greatest hits playlist on a trip to visit colleges with our daughter Josie.
I love you Bub, it’s gonna be fun.
This article originally aappearedon Redbook Magazine.