Thursday, May 9, 2013


Exposure to Fiancé's cold and my little brother's incipient flu eventually beat the crap out of my immune system this past weekend. Despite that, I still attended my friends' Cinco de Mayo barbecue the following day. Because I'm a superhero.

I rested for a few days after that. But then a circuit shorted in my brain and sent errant signals that made me feel fat. So I went to the gym yesterday. Did I almost pass out? Yes. But I powered through. And it was while I was doing bicep curls using resistance bands that I had an epiphany: Working out is like life -- you encounter resistance, and you fight against it and become stronger.

(cue triumphant music)

As though to underline that revelation, Fiancé tricked me later that day. He texted and said he and his coworkers were heading to a certain pub; did I want to meet them there and then we two would go have dinner somewhere nearby? Always a sucker for food (c.f. first paragraph of this post), I said yes and power-walked to the destination.

To my puzzlement, he sat alone at a table. "Where's everyone else?" I asked.

"It's just us!" he replied cheerfully. "Don't you remember? It's our anniversary!" He pulled out a card and a small gold-wrapped box tied in the ribbons of a local jeweler. He'd gotten me earrings to wear for our wedding.

As I derp'ed, he wistfully recalled the moment, exactly two years ago, when we sat at that very table and discussed being boyfriend and girlfriend. "And now we'll have a new anniversary!" he concluded brightly.

At my bachelorette, my maid of honor asked me when I knew I wanted to marry this man. I said it was when he showed that he adored Sheba. But moments like yesterday are high up on that list, too.

But what does that have to do with your epiphany at the gym, Fragrant Elephant?, you ask. Dear reader, I commend your attention to detail, and your commitment to the pillars of writing: focus, development, unity, and coherence. You deserve a blog that delivers all that. But, since you'r here...

In fact, Fiancé and I encountered a lot of resistance before we even began going out. But we pushed back, and here we are. Stronger, smarter, leaner (literally, in his case: he lost eight pounds via illness).

Let me extend the analogy in a more, er, unique way. My cynicism is like a resistance band. I need to keep pulling at it, to build my muscles of kindness. After all, a cynical person looks unkindly at her fellow humans. I've been a cynic since high school. Like Iron Man, I wrapped myself in what I thought was an armor of sneering pessimism. But that armor was a cocoon! And when the hairy, chubby caterpillar of cynicism melts away, what new butterfly shall emerge?

Hopefully, one that remembers anniversaries. Herp derp.