The Loosening of Ambition

I have a horrible memory, but I remember Ryan asking me to move to DC. Sitting next to each other knee to knee, looking away, biting my inner cheek while he explained why his company needed to relocate. I waited, re-forming his words in my brain while he talked, and then, he wants me to come with him, doesn’t think he can do it without me.

I remember Thank You. Relief. Finally. (And hooray big city!) Thank you for taking me away, letting me play big, taking me with you. 

The move, four years ago now, was supposed to be temporary.

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What’s In a Name? Feminism After Marriage

I did not take the decision lightly to take my husband’s name. Many people were surprised (because here, here, here, here and here). But I have always known I would change my name, painful as it was to drop my maiden name Thorman, and its matriarchal lineage.

In my family, the women are the strong ones, and my mother is very strong. Thorman was my mother’s maiden name, which she came back to after divorcing her first husband, and she never married my father, who later died too early. I was first and foremost always my mother’s daughter and always had the name Thorman.

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How Much Does the Dang Thing Cost? An Honest Accounting of a Modern Wedding

This is Part 2 of talking about my recent marriage. Read Part 1, How to Get Married After a Long-Term Relationship, here.

Okay, let’s preface this post right upfront:

1) “Expensive” and “cheap” are relative terms. But know that we live in Washington, DC and it’s one of the wealthiest – and most expensive – places to live in the country, so that’s where our paradigm comes from.

2) We all browse the wedding blogs and Pinterest in anticipation of the big day. As we gain inspiration, our budget gains dollar signs. During my research, I found it exasperating that no one ever, ever shared price tags (um, $ vs $$$ is not helpful).

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How to Get Married After a Long-Term Relationship

RyanAndRebeccaEngaged_29Ryan and I were together almost six years before we got married a few weeks ago. People (like me) enjoy asking long-time couples once they’re married, “Do you feel any different?” And the answer is usually, “Not really.”

But I do. For me, marriage is an unknown. I didn’t grow up with an example of marriage or what it meant. My father died when I was in second grade, but even if he had lived, my parents were not married. They loved each other, spent their free time with each other, slept with each other (and then there was me – surprise!), but did not marry each other, for reasons too intricate for now.

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When You Both Work: 10 Ways to Balance Love & Career

When both partners in a relationship work, it can be difficult to balance love with career. Modern romance often means no one is home to make dinner, and quality time can be hard to find. Over at US News and World Report today, I talk about the ten ways to still find success as a couple while pursuing a career.

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How to Handle Difficult Career Transitions

How to Handle Difficult Career Transitions

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Ever since we moved, I have been doing projects. A lot of them. Whereas other people will spend money on clothes and beer, I will spend money on molding, paint, and shelving. Part of my obsession is that I have a design background, but most of it is that I am an extreme nester. God help me when we decide to get pregnant.

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Moving to a New City

Airports are particularly filthy places, no matter who you are. No matter what seat you’re in on the plane, everyone has to sit on the same toilet seats in the airport. Or hover, if you’re smart.

I’m not a germaphobe by any means, at least not yet, but airports get to me in a way that other public transportation doesn’t. I’m always looking to count on the goodness of my fellow travelers; but it’s usually about a fifty-fifty split as to who surprises me, for better or for worse.

One of the ideas that I put out there at the beginning of the year was that I wanted to travel more, and indeed, I have taken more trips in the last year than I probably have in my life.

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A New Residence for Home

Ryan is so very tall and my condo is so very small. So it was not without reservation that we recently moved in together.  We talked about it a lot – the important things, the mundane, the humdrum. In talking about moving in together, we broke our record in effective communication. And then we talked some more. “If we could communicate like this for the rest of our lives,” Ryan said, “we’d be the best couple ever.” And so it went… until.

You know, moving is very stressful, and moving in with someone you intend to spend your life with is this gigantic life decision, and somehow all of the pressure and insanity of it all got put into one question – did we need to buy another dresser?

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One Guy, One Girl, Two Start-Ups and a Relationship

Quick, which is more difficult – work or life?

Up until a year ago, both competed for my attention, each piling weight onto the seesaw to rise towards the favored position. A year ago, however, I started working at Alice and Ryan and I started hitting our stride (both of which were not without challenges, however… many, many challenges).

While working for a start-up demands hours, it demands more in mental energy, in spikes of time about as predictable as a bingo game, where the only invariable is that you know work will be stop and go. This means it’s often difficult to separate work and life, especially in the statuesque pursuit of balance, but while I used to recognize and promote blur, I’m now mindful of the distinct delineation between the two.

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Get a prenup for your marriage

photo via WeHeartIt.

Marie McKinney argues:

Prenups at face value seem to fly in the face of pretty much everything a marriage stands for. Prenuptial agreements seem to say “I promise to love you forever… but when that doesn’t work out I want $500,000 for every year we were married”

What I’m trying to say is that we don’t like the idea of prenups because they suggest a lack of faith in the marriage when the marriage contract itself seems to have little to no faith in the marriage either.

I actually think prenups suggest some maturity in communication.

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Midwest women marry early

In some more research related to my post on feeling pressure to marry early, Pew Demographics reveals some fascinating statistics in their infographic on marriage and divorce. For starters, the numbers back up my assertion that Midwest women marry earlier; a Wisconsin’s woman median age of first marriage at 26 is a full two years earlier than a New York’s woman median age of first marriage at 28.

And in another intriguing twist, it seems that the rate of divorce seems to increase in States where couples marry sooner and is lower in States where couples hold off a couple years, with some interesting exceptions.

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Trying isn’t good enough

“What did you do today?”

I cried like a druggie in rehab pleading with God and my dead father to help me. Also, I slept. Tried to sleep. To ignore. To escape. Between sleeping and crying, I tried to be normal.

“Nothing much, I ran some errands,” I replied on a Saturday night out at the bar, trying to be normal. Going out with friends for the first time in a long time. Friends that were good enough to forget that I ignored them for the past eight months. Because that’s what happens when I’m in a relationship.

Everyone likes me better when I’m single.

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