Its the end of an era, folks.
There are 10 days left of my freedom, 10 days for me to sleep spread-eagle and 10 days to throw my sh*t anywhere I want without worrying about it landing on top of someone elses sh*t.
I have 10 days left to watch trashy TV with my roommates until 1 am and order all the tofu pad see ew I want on Seamless.
In 10 days, I leave the fourthfloor, rent-stabilized, West Village walk-up I love so dearly and make my way to Brooklyn like my parents, grandparents and great-grandparents before me.
Thats right, Im moving in with my man friend.
He’s the love of my life. My single gal days are over, and Im taking that huge step into cohabitation with him.
I’ll never come home to my own bedroom again.
But thats okay.
Actually, its more than okay.
Its amazing! Im beside myself with excitement, and its not just because Ill have an elevator and an in-unit washer and dryer.
So long, re-wearing dirty bras. Goodbye, months between jean washing.
Adios to you, $22 every other week for staticky, poorly folded clothing.
This girl is going to smell fresh, and she’ll be donning sweaters that havent shrunk in the wash.
But, were getting off track here.
The point is, Im taking a leap of faith in my relationship and moving into a place that will no longer be mine, but ours.
I should also mention Im scared out of my f*cking mind.
Ive read articles about how to move in with your significant other without hating him or her.
Theyve detailed how to combine your stuff, how to respect each others space and how to keep the love strong.
But most of all, they stress communication. I get it.
Communication is super important. I know that.
I work in advertising, and I majored in journalism.
Communication is what I deal with all day, every day, and I see how important it has been in maintaining cross-country friendships and celebrating long-distance family holidays.
Strong communication is the cornerstone of every good relationship, so this advice isnt news to anyone out there.
English isnt my boyfriends first language (or his second or third, for that matter), so weve mastered how to make sure nothing gets lost in translation and that we’re communicating correctly.
The first few months after we met were spent dating via Skype between New York City and San Francisco, so the two of us have communication locked down.
Give me something more, Interweb.
What I want and need is real advice, not something a psychiatrist, book or podcast is going to tell me in vague terms that could be applied to everything and nothing.
So, I went to some of the people I love and trust most in this world, who have experience living with significant others.
They know what it means to work hard to make sure cohabitation is as fun and comfortable as it should be.
Heres a handful of the best advice Ive received so far, and I hope youll benefit from hearing it, too:
Wait until after he falls asleep to lather on the lavender-infused aromatherapy hand lotion he hates.
Learn to let things go, and youll be much happier. I think that was Buddha. Maybe check that reference first, but its true, whoever said it.
Relax your notions of the rules of day-to-day living. Just because theres a certain way you prefer something around the house, that doesnt make it objectively the best way.
Make sure you intentionally set aside time to spend together: dates, movie nights, whatever. Its really easy to fall into default time spent together, which ends up not feeling the same at all.
Know when to leverage watching football so you can watch ‘Real Housewives.’
Let go of some of your habits, never go to bed angry and always bone.
Master the art of compromise. Sometimes it will be 90/10 your way or 80/20 your way. But, no compromise will ever be 100 percent.
Youre going to hate a lot of things he does, but you can learn to live with them. Your father picks his toenails, and I have hated that for nearly 40 years. But, at least he doesnt do it at the dinner table anymore.
My mother (obviously)
The basis of what will make our new home together wonderful comes down to the advice my grandmother gave me when she said, Just love each other. I know sometimes that may be difficult, but remember to just love each other.
Then, she broke into laughter.
Do you have real-life advice for me and anyone else venturing down the path of cohabitation? Add yours in the comments.