A Mixed Marriage

Posted by mwallach on May 25, 2010 in Crazy Follows Me Everywhere, My Kids, New Yorkers |

As in any other mixed marriage, my husband and I often encounter certain problems that I’m sure other couples have had to deal with. We try to do this gracefully, without alarming our kids and certainly not in public, but some times, our emotions flair and seem to get the best of us. We are both steadfast in our beliefs, as they were ingrained in us as children.

How should we raise the kids? That was a tough one. In the end we decided that the boys would follow his tradition and the girls would follow mine. That was fine with me, I thought — we have many more girls than boys.
Truth is that you don’t know a person until you live with them. You can date forever and be in love for even longer and it is not the same as living with them. Because until you share space with a person, you really don’t know their true self.

I don’t remember seeing any Mets hats or paraphernalia around when we were dating and my internal Met alarm never went off. It never occurred to me that I, a lover of all things Yankee, could have been dating, even marrying, a Met fan. Having the “So, do you see yourself making aliyah?” conversation would have been nothing against the “So, is home plate in the Bronx or in Queens?” conversation — a conversation I never thought to have. Raise children who are Met fans? Now that’s just crazy talk. But his Mets shirts, hats and pennants seem to have come out as soon as sheva brachot were done. The honeymoon was over.

And yet, here we are 15 years later and we seem to be making it work. My sons have Met kippahs and will continue to refer to that huge stadium in Queens as Shea (if we have anything to do with it). My daughters, on the other hand, know that Mommy’s favorite Yankee is Jorge Posada and, in contradiction to a shirt I bought them long ago, in Joba we no longer trust. A cousin of ours likes to tell me that he thinks I am a closet Met fan while I like to tell him I think he’d look good in pinstripes. We’ve reconciled the family to our non-traditional ways and it’s all good. Even the in-laws get along.

To go, therefore, to that big stadium in Queens for a Subway Series game, wearing my Yankee jersey, was almost the thrill of a lifetime. My girls wore blue and white, while my husband and son wore blue and orange. We took pictures in front of the old Home Run apple and then also in front of the big ‘42’, the tribute to Jackie Robinson. And then, we went to our seats.
I’m not sure what constitutes ‘inappropriate behavior’ at one of these games, as the announcement warned that such behavior would lead to being escorted out of the park. Actually, it probably would be easier to determine ‘appropriate behavior,’ since much of what was being chanted or screamed at the field cannot be reprinted in this paper. (Hey, this is family programming, for Pete’s sake.)

We climbed to our seats and ducked the chanting surrounding us as we walked into our row. And with all that was going on, both on the field and in the stands, the gentleman at the end of the end of the row stopped when he saw us, as if we were more interesting than anything else in the stadium. Noticing what we were wearing, he asked, “So — mixed marriage?”

MLW

As seen in The Jewish Star May ’10

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