We graduated from college last weekend. And by “we” I mean I graduated three years ago but Matt did last weekend, so now we’re complete. As a couple, we were in limbo for awhile as Matt was working to catch-up with me (I was insane and took a gazillion credits each semester to graduate early).
So, this was Matt’s accomplishment. Of course, I was there for every moment of it, editing papers when he asked or checking on the outcomes of his tests--so it kinda felt like my accomplishment, too. But I didn’t write those papers or take those tests. So, to be honest, I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to do during all of the events that led up to his graduation.
Plan the parties?
Defer to his family?
Ultimately, I just decided to let Matt dictate my role – if he wanted me to do something I did it, but mostly, I just let him do what he wanted.
When HIS day finally rolled around last weekend, I found myself balancing awkwardly on that line between "him" and "we." I mean, we are getting married in less than four months, so I am used to getting a lot of attention at special events. People ask questions about our wedding, honeymoon and plans for the future. And I have no problem talking about myself (ask the grocery checker at King Soopers). But this time--at Matt's occasion--I found myself kind of at a loss for words.
I know I might sound like a self-centered brat (and I am, admittedly), but for Matt’s day, I didn’t want to be that person. So I wasn’t. I chatted with almost-strangers about Matt’s new job and how much he seems to love it. I talked about his last semester of school and how hard Matt labored to finish while also working. I gushed about how cute he looks in a hardhat. And I celebrated Matt (even if my natural reaction was more of sigh of relief than a shout for joy). Because that is what you do for a Singleton’s event in a Coupledom.
Matt has celebrated with me in my events (graduating from college, finding my first grown-up job, getting a good haircut), and he has allowed me to show (or forcefully tell) him how I’d like for him to celebrate with me. And last weekend I had the chance to do the same for him, and it showed me how how important that is. It was Matt’s day. I’m just blessed to be able to share with him. And he should get to do things how he wants to (even if it involved multiple post-midnight returns to our home). When it's about me, I might do it differently (like with Champagne instead of beer), but at the end of the day, I’m just lucky to have someone to celebrate with.
Besides, "my day" is coming up soon enough. Four months to be exact. I'll be the one wearing white.