Hooray! Our Marriage is Old Enough to Drink! aka – Making Yourself Happy as Part of a Pair

Mark and Laurie in the lobby of the JW Marriott hotel
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Mark and me in the lobby of the JW Marriott hotel. Fancy pants for us! Lots of fun to actually be out and about on at Saturday night once more. It has been YEARS!

Yikes! We’ve Been Married 21 Freakin’ Years!

Laurie and Mark's wedding photo

21 years ago we ran OFF to Las Vegas and tied the knot. What energy we had! What fun! We may look different today, but we still have those adventure hearts.

Wow! Check out that hopeful, happy dew-faced couple here from our wedding. Where in BLAZES did those two go? How did we EVER get covered in Senior Suits? Does time REALLY FRICKIN’ fly?

Looking back, I am amazed at our energy, vim and verve! Even though we weren’t Spring chickens even then. I was in my 30s and Mark a 40ish bachelor guy when we tied the knot. And I’m also amazed that we made it to the altar as we are so very, very different.

How Come What You LOVE is What Drives You Crazy?

Here’s a funny thing I’ve noticed in romance, family, AND friendships. Often the very qualities that were SO enticing in the beginning of a relationship are the VERY things that bug the crap out of you later.

Part of that may be that we are ‘on our BEST behavior’ at the beginning of any relationship – or even when ‘we decide to do better‘ for some reason. But no one, can keep his or her social mask intact over the long haul. Not dating, not BFFs, not at work, not during family visits. Sometime it just has to crack and the REAL YOU (or them) comes tumbling out.

In our case, I’m an early bird, rising at 5AM many days, falling asleep by 9 or 10 PM. Mark is just getting his energy on and is eating dinner at my bedtime. I talk your ear off. Mark likes to be quiet. I’m usually fine hanging out in a crowd. Mark prefers space. I love being on the go and juggling projects and ideas. Mark likes to proceed one thing at a time, thoughtfully and methodically.

Even what we eat is different. Guess his favorite food? ALL SEAFOOD! Guess what makes me sick, and the slightest smell of it even makes me gag. SEAFOOD. So many recipes that sound SO GREAT to me, contain spice or ingredients that turn him off and vice versa. I’m surprised we EVER made a meal together.

Bamboo Bends

Even though we’re getting to be like OLD bamboo that’s a bit stiff, bamboo, at heart survives by bending in the storm.

Laurie and Mark standing in front of the stage with the NASHVILLE in Concert sign in back

I LOVE a USA soap opera called Nashville about country singers and songwriters. Mark, who has NEVER seen it, nonetheless, went with me to see many of the actors sing in concert at the Nokia theater in the L.A. Live area of downtown Los Angeles to CELEBRATE our 21st wedding anniversary.

I LOVE the TV show, Nashville. Mark has never even seen it. Despite this, he agreed to accompany his gaga wife to see many of the Nashville stars sing live in downtown LA at the Nokia Theater. Conveniently, the concert was ON our anniversary, and our anniversary was on a Saturday night! Yahoo!

We stayed at the swanky JW Marriott, a property just steps from the theater. And ::SMOOCH:: JW for upgrading us to an awesome suite with Mad Men decor and killer city views in honor of our occasion.

Night time view of the neon lights of LA Live

View of L.A. Live from our 20th floor window at JW Marriott. The roof on the right is actually the Nokia Theater where we saw the concert. Could NOT be closer. Steps from hotel to venue.

We had snacks prior to the show and then wandered around after looking for chow. Surprisingly, the only venues serving right then were clubs with lines of skimpy clad 20 somethings snaking round the block. Not our scene, so we finally ended up ‘dining’ almost at midnight at Wolfgang Puck’s WP24 at the Ritz-Carleton (sister property to good ole’ JW)

It was thrilling, and I think Mark enjoyed the food. I enjoyed the romanic view. My tummy just wasn’t really UP for digesting or tasting so late at night, but I DID have a sip of wine and a bite of the dim sum that Mark thoughtfully ordered with separate dipping sauce so my chicken wouldn’t be contaminated by his shrimp. Even though I was dining without really eating, I thoroughly enjoyed our anniversary dinner experience.

Also, even though we fell asleep REALLY late for me, I was up at the crack of dawn per usual. A peek out of the window revealed the swimming pool in shade. Perfect! I let Mark enjoy his Zzzzs while I made myself happy with a trip to the coffee bar and a dip in the pool before breakfast.

Laurie holding coffee by the pool with neon sign in back

Early swim after a very late night. Doesn’t get better than this! Hot java, pool to myself and sunrise over LA.

Speaking of breakfast, I LOVED my buffet meal. I let myself have a bite of every single thing that looked at all good to me. Took my time, and relished it all. Do I wish Mark loved the morning and joined me? Sure. But he can only bend so far, Mr. Cute Bamboo. And rather than wishing my time away on what isn’t, I decided to LOVE what is. I had an anniversary where I got many of my things and he got many of his, and we both had the time of our lives. Sometimes us bendy bamboo outlasts strong oaks in a storm.

Laurie smiles over a plate of food and a large juice

I loved my breakfast today. It was a buffet and I had one or two bites of every single thing I felt like eating. FANTASTIC!

Comments box:

9 thoughts on “Hooray! Our Marriage is Old Enough to Drink! aka – Making Yourself Happy as Part of a Pair

  1. Dawny

    absolutely LOVELY Laurie.. thanks for sharing =-) looks to be a lot of fun, and VERY romantic

    I too have the same sorts of marriage.. total opposites on many levels.. ha, some-how we make it work as Im in my 22nd year.. interesting at any rate..


  2. Cheryl

    Well heck! They say opposites attract. It’s interesting that you were talking about this because HL and I were both polar opposites when we got married. But over the last ten, fifteen years or so we seem to be settling closer and closer together temperament wise and are pretty much two peas in a pod. That can be good, but it has its downside, too. I think it makes us less inclined to go out and try new things.

    So enjoy those difference while you can. And hold onto them! At 43 years of marriage we almost feel like twins (and the dark side of me things, hm… if we think and feel the same, maybe one of us isn’t necessary! Yeah, that would be the DARK SIDE! 😀 But it might be nice to take separate vacations!)

    1. Laurie@CompulsiveOvereatingDiary Post author

      You scare me there Cheryl! I cannot conceive of any day in any year where his Markness and I would ever agree on anything (outside of going to Hawaii, bike riding, and trips to Ventura) whole heartedly. It feels to us our entire lives together are one big negotiation and we BOTH bitch that the other one usually “wins” 😉 But we are also right there when the other one needs ANYTHING, and we band quickly if WE feel our little family needs unity. So I guess it is all in the point of view. Note to self: Don’t marry strong-willed, independent minded, older bachelor if you claim to want warm and fuzzy closeness all day long! (especially if YOU are strong-willed, independent and set in your own ways by 30 )hahahahah

      1. Cheryl

        (His Markness! Giggle) Well at least it keeps things from getting stagnant! 😀 Yes, be afraid! Be very afraid so it doesn’t happen to you guys!!!

  3. Dave

    Kathleen and I started out nearly opposites also, but after 20 years we have become as close as peas in a pod…..Is there a place for the BC’s to post pictures on this blog….

    When we were first married there were lots of difficulties, but then we learned to put each others needs first like: “Mark thoughtfully ordered with separate dipping sauce so my chicken wouldn’t be contaminated by his shrimp”

    We have also learned to communicate those needs, no matter what anybody says being in love does not make you psychic “if you really loved me you would know….” so we both work hard at the communication and the rest falls into place.

    You two are a couple that proves loves conquers all.

    1. Laurie@CompulsiveOvereatingDiary Post author

      Hi Dave, there is no way to post photos here. But you CAN add links in your comments to other places you’ve posted them such as Instagram or FB. Mark and I have gotten a bit closer in our behavior, but I must say, we are defying the experience of you and Cheryl in that we seem to retain MOST of our differences. It may partly be that we are both very independent and so our separate lives remain even as we’ve built a life as a couple.

      You are also SO right that you have to communicate. That was really tough for us to learn, but it is one of best things we ever pursued – to learn better communication with one another.

      Love hasn’t conquered all as yet, but it HAS conquered most 😉

  4. Rachel Partridge

    Hi there Laurie. So lovely to hear about you and Mark. Great honesty about your relationship. We are in our 23rd year of marriage and I agree that it can be a roller coaster at times. We work together really well but also need time apart. It does feel like a pair of old slippers but have learned along the way. He never argued when we first met and I have learned to communicate more and not assume he will second guess. We always appreciate each other and say so every day. Glad you enjoyed your anniversary in style. You reminded me that I don’t have to eat when I’m not hungry. Just being there is enough. Your early morning swim and breakfast sounded lovely. Best wishes and big hugs xxx

    1. Laurie@CompulsiveOvereatingDiary Post author

      Hi Rachel, thanks for your warm comments. Every day Mark and I are amazed that two such different souls have managed to stay connected. Of course love and respect is the glue. I think it took me quite a while to understand that not every person in the world thought as I did. Once I got that, things were much smoother sailing. Our anniversary outing was double fun because it was something we don’t usually do. As we get a little more senior, we tend to redo ‘what works’ – nothing wrong with that, but I think trying some new things takes us back to our adventurous past. Much love to you and your slipper-mate. xoxoxoxoxox


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