I swore I wouldn't be one of those women whose lives get so intermingled with their husbands that they no longer have a separate identity. I was going to maintain my own friends. I would never have a couple picture as my profile pic on Facebook. I would never keep a wedding photo as my profile pic for more than a month after the wedding. I would never get a joint email account.
I decided it was about time to take down the Facebook profile photo from my 30th birthday party in May, but I couldn't find any good recent photos to replace it. It turns out that the only flattering pictures of me over the past year all include Jason. I have tons of solo photos, but I despise them for one reason or another. And then, there's that ever-more-compelling option of using one of the amazing photos... that includes Jason. And possibly a hug or some other equally cutesy lovey cr*p. But they are recent and flattering and available. And so, for the first time, I was tempted to just one anyhow. Except, damnit, it's MY facebook profile, not OUR Facebook profile. And I'm not one of those women. Right?
I'm starting to realize that the lines are getting blurred, and it's harder to keep certain things separate. We just signed up for a joint email address to facilitate wedding RSVPs and long-term bill paying. Although the gmail account will forward to both of our individual emails, I felt really torn about it. It makes really smart logistical/shared information sense for a household, but I still I felt like I was losing this little piece of my independence. And I really hope my friends never use that email after their wedding rsvp. Because it's really important to me to have a space for privacy - not to hide anything, since I figure we'll probably end up sharing passwords at some point - but just to have a place that's mine.
For the moment, the Facebook picture is just mine. And my career is mine... except if I want/am forced to change, in which case the choices become ours. And my friends are becoming ours and his are becoming mine and it's all just becoming a large extended social group. And the bills and healthcare insurance decisions are ours. And the responsibilities of life are ours. Jointly. Together. There's no line anymore for so much of it. My choices affect his. His choices affect me. I may be keeping my name but this is very much a partnership. And it's getting harder to figure out my own personal space, and even if I care about it as much as I used to. I like coming home to Jason. I like sharing couchspace as we work on our own projects. And I like knowing that we're in this together.
So I'm figuring out my new lines in the sand. I'm figuring out how it feels to be someone's partner in every sense of the word. I'm gaining so much, and my life is immeasurably enriched by it, but I'm saying goodbye to impulsive solo travels and complete career independence and the ability to stay out until 1am (or even just 10pm) without phoning anyone. After 26 years of rather fierce independence and inability to allow anyone to get me chicken soup while I was sick, I'm actually comfortable with it this shift. I don't really feel like I'm fighting to hold onto myself because my priorities have naturally shifted towards Us (with a healthy dose of Me and cheering for Him.)
Although I swear I will take that wedding pic down after it's been up a month. Promise.