And no, it’s not (just) the tiny shorts. It goes much deeper than that.
It all started back in 2004 when I discovered my boyfriend (now hubby) had another love in his life… AFL.
Now, I’d never actually watched a game of AFL, nor did I want to. So, it was a part of his life I left unchartered.
After we were married, Friday nights became footy night for hubby and movie night for me. That was just fine by me but Phil would comment, every now and then, about how he’d love for me to watch with him. Er, no thanks.
Then I read a book that totally changed my outlook on the subject… ‘For Women Only – What You Need to Know About The Inner Lives of Men’ by Shaunti Feldhahn.
Each chapter was gobsmackingly enlightening but the chapter that leapt out at me explained how much it means to him when you share his hobby.
‘Okay,’ I thought. ‘Let’s try a little experiment.’
So, Friday night rolled around and I found myself reluctantly sitting on the couch next to a rather astonished hubby. From the first siren to the last, I watched an athletic bunch blokes bashing into each other, jumping unhumanly high and following a list of rules so complicated, you’d need a degree in rocket surgery just to keep up!
‘So, what did you think?’ He asked, rather chuffed.
‘Ummm,’ I replied. Speechless.
But I wasn’t a quitter. No. I made a commitment to get my head around this crazy game if it was the last thing I ever did.
So, after a few weekends full of footy watching and hubby patiently explaining every rule, every tackle and every scuffle, I became a fully fledged spectator.
Then, one fateful day as I stood over the kitchen sink, I looked up over the cutlery and said ‘sweetheart, I have an announcement to make.’ Tentatively, hubby took his eyes off the tv to give me his full, nervous attention.
‘I’ve decided to make Collingwood my team.’ I said, reverently.
Hubby defied gravity as he leapt up from the lounge and gathered me in his arms. ‘AJ,’ he said joyfully, ‘This is the happiest day of my life.’
And so began our new, enriched marriage and my love for all things footy. Please don’t hate me because I barrack for Collingwood. I married into it.
Could be worse. I watched a documentary once about a woman who’d married a rally car driver and she realised that in order to spend time with him, she’d have to (literally) get on board with his passion. So, she became his cross country navigator, sitting beside him through every bumpy twist and turn. And isn’t that what marriage is really all about?