The adjustment to living with my husband after years of living in delightful solitude was smoother than I thought it would be, especially since we didn’t live together until after we were married. I haven’t had to deal with giant anxiety-inducing piles of clutter, the expectation that chores are “women’s work,” or visitors/in laws popping by unannounced. That’s awesome, but there is a Cold War in our marriage in the most literal sense. My husband likes to blast the A/C and fan until the apartment is freezing, while I don’t like paying a higher electric bill to be cold.
I’m originally from Ohio, so I used to be very resilient when it came to cold weather. However, I’ve slowly begun to acclimate after living in the South for over 5 years and I can’t withstand the cold quite as well as I used to, especially when it’s artificial cold created by air conditioning. Outside cold somehow doesn’t feel quite as cold as a powerful fan blasting cold air on me relentlessly. Temperature issues aside, I’m still glad I live here now because it’s really nice to see the sun more than 3 times a year.
I work from home, and I inevitably notice every single day when I start working that the apartment is freezing again. I put on a hoodie (even though it’s freaking August and I shouldn’t need one, especially indoors), turn the temperature up to something less arctic, and wait until I can type without shivering again. It would probably be quicker to put a 5 gallon drum in the living room and build a damn fire to warm my hands over and make s’mores, but I’m pretty sure that would violate the terms of the lease (and possibly burn down the entire building).
After I’ve regained feeling in my fingers again and completed my work, usually I’m good for the rest of the day. The next morning, however, the thermostat has somehow magically been set back to arctic. Is it like in South Park with the gnomes who steal people’s underwear while they’re sleeping, only now the gnomes are working for Duke Energy and conspiring to raise my electric bill so they can profit? I wouldn’t put it past Duke Energy to hire the underpants gnomes to crank up people’s A/C so they can price-gouge us even more to pay for their coal ash pits. It seems more likely, however, that my (wonderful beloved) husband turns it down every day and then I have to turn it back up so I can make my work phone calls without my teeth chattering.
I’m guessing I’m not the only wife who’s had this kind of Cold War with a very warm-blooded spouse. However, if this is the worst thing I can say about marriage after a year, I think we’re doing pretty well.