Wednesday, April 11, 2012

J is for Jerry (my Yin)

2013 NOTE: This post is about my recently-exed-husband. It's still all true, but ever-so-slightly sad, now. This post explains a little about what happened. Turns out that the opposites-attracting thing is harder to maintain than I ever suspected.

Ever hear about opposites attracting? Ever doubt that it was true? Doubt no more. My husband, Jerry, and I have very little in common. Maybe that's why we keep behaving like newlyweds after almost 12 years of marriage (come back on April 28th).

I have a law degree and a full-time job. He has a high school education and takes care of the boys with odd jobs on the side. I'd like to take care of the boys and write on the side. He'd like to get a full-time job.

He thinks my hometown, near Salt Lake City, is MUCH too big. I think his no-stoplight hometown in Eastern Idaho is MUCH too small.

I enjoy reading, and can do it day-in, day-out, dawn-to-dusk, without stopping, so long as there is a stack of willing books nearby. Jerry... is not a reader. He will never read any of my books. If one of my books is one day made into a movie, I might be able to get him to wear a suit to the premier, where he will most likely take a two hour nap. (Unless I can shoehorn in some explosions....) Yessir, we will be keeping him far away from the press.

I am overweight and generally sedentary, with occasional bouts of guess-I-should-use-my-gym-membership fervor. There is not a single active activity that I can't quite happily do without. Jerry is NOT overweight and actually prefers to be active. There is hardly a single active activity that he doesn't enjoy--but he especially loves those activities which come with loud bangs and blood-covered hands. He and the boys are constantly trying to get mommy to join them on their outdoor adventures. They bribe me with books and lawn chairs.

Jerry has been working since the age of nine, when he started moving pipe for a local farmer and taught himself how to drive a farm truck. He went on to drive tractor-trailers for a few years and now gets carsick if someone else drives for too long. I've been working since the age of sixteen and, not counting my half-interest in our marital vehicles, have never owned my own car. I've never changed a tire all by myself--forget about the oil. I rarely pump gas (unless I'm away at a conference and Jerry isn't around to do it for me). I never get carsick. While Jerry drives, I read or write.

Jerry used to be a bona-fide cowboy. Rode bulls and bucking broncos, wrestled steers, and roped calves. He was kicked in the head three separate times by bulls and usually rode again the next night. He's prone to headaches, but rarely lets it stop him. I get a headache when I ride too many roller coasters and rarely want to ride any more until it goes away.

I (barely) passed the AP Calculus test in high school and never took another math class. Ever. I doubt I've ever balanced my checkbook. Jerry never took AP Math, but he can do calculations in his head that I need a calculator for. Wanna guess who's in charge of finances around here? (I make it, he spends it.)

Jerry has been doing my laundry--including my unmentionables--since we were engaged. He does the grocery shopping--all of the grocery shopping. He keeps the dishes washed and has dinner on the table when I get home. He vacuums. He maintains the cars, improves the home, and kills the spiders. He does NOT clean the bathroom. I clean the bathroom and the kitchen. Every few months, with a lot of griping, I deep-clean something. I do no car maintenance or yard work.

We don't watch the same TV shows (except House--and what will we watch together when the last few episodes are gone?), think each other's movies are insipid/boring/horrifying/silly, and have realized that we should NEVER talk to each other about the death penalty. Not. A good. Idea.

So why do I love him? The rocks in his head exactly fill the holes in mine. Where I am weak, he is strong. Where I slack, he shines. He supports me even though he'll never understand me. He thinks I'm beautiful even when I've been sick for a week, and makes me feel light even though I outweigh him.

He is the Yin to my Yang.

He loves me. He loves my children.

What's not to love?
Who can resist a strong man with a baby?
So are you attracted to your opposite or do you prefer someone who likes the same things you do?


  1. Like you Robin, I am very different from my spouse. She is fun loving, I am more stoic. She is a great organizer, me not so much. She is a great writer, I am a great at creating plots. So all in all, we complement each other. But we also have some shared likes as well such as we like similar movies, belong to the same church, etc. But fortunatly, my stengths are not her strengths, and that makes our relationship stronger and longer lasting. And we will be hitting our 14 year aniversary on Aug 15th.

  2. Awww, what a sweet post! I really need to meet this guy sometime. As for my significant other, we're a lot alike, but a lot not, too. We're in synch enough to be very happy together, but different enough to keep things interesting :)

  3. What a delightful delve into your married life...our 21st anniversary is April 27th!! And my husband and I are very different, too, but both only children. That means because we are so different, we don't spend lots of time together in pursuits...we are rather independent. But it works, and we love one another, and are accepting of each other's distinctive qualities. Thanks for sharing, and enjoy the challenge!

  4. Aww, so nice to meet your other half, Robin! ;)


    A to Z co-host<br

  5. I enjoyed the post. Thought it was cute.

    My boyfriend and I are very similar though. We like mostly the same things, have the same goals in life, and struggle in the same areas. I like it actually. I dated someone before who was my opposite and they could never get me. We fought all the time because I needed him when he wanted to be independent and wanted things out of life and relationships that he didn't.

    My boyfriend and I complete each other's sentences and thoughts. We understand each other in ways that other people can't get us because they aren't like us. It feels nice to have someone who gets the real me.

    So I prefer someone who is the same as me.