As I sit here, waiting for the start of the new series of Doctor Who, I am amazed at how different a person I am after more than 12 years with my husband. For instance, I had never seen an episode of Doctor Who before I met him. To be honest, I had never seen any of the Star Wars movies either, to his utter disbelief. I’m sure I had tried to watch Star Wars a few times throughout my childhood but I could never make it past the first 15 minutes (when R2-D2 and C3PO get stranded in the desert of Tatooine…by then, bored completely out of my brain!)
I was a child of a catholic education, 4 years of which were served in a single-sex high school. Sci-fi and fantasy weren’t really rocking St Mary’s High School at Maitland. I remember the crushes I had on Eric Wiedeman from 1927 and Kristian Schmidt from Neighbours and how I seemingly lived most of my teenage years wishing I was in the pages of a Jane Austen novel. The only sci-fi or fantasy that invaded my world was when I was forced to read JRR Tolkien’s The Hobbit in Year 7 – suffice to say, I never went back for more.
So when my husband and I got together we were coming from two different worlds. He has been immersed in sci-fi and fantasy for as long as he can remember. He loves role playing, miniature war games and reading comics and graphic novels. Very different to my taste in trashy regency romance novels, romantic comedies and crosstitching (yes, sadly, all very true!). How we actually got together, I have no idea, but we obviously found enough to go on with and 12 years later we are still together.
Seriously, I think one of our strengths is our ability to embrace each others interests and, if we can’t embrace them, the fact we have never stopped each other from pursuing them. Which is why, in those early days, I consented to a Star Wars video night (no DVDs back then!) so I could be up to speed for the release of Episode 1 back in 1999. Likewise, my husband came to watch my team play in a local tennis competition final and recently came with me to a day at the Australian Open. We may not be as equally passionate about these interests but we have learned to share them all the same.
So, thanks to my husband, I am now a genuine Star Wars fan, a recent convert to Doctor Who (have much to catch-up on though!), an admirer of superhero movies (Ironman, anyone?) and an appreciator of the fantasy spectacle of films such as the Lord of the Rings trilogy and the Harry Potter series (I have actually outstripped my husband in my love of Harry!) Without my husband’s introduction to these realms I would have never gone near them – but I am oh so glad that I opened my mind to the wonder and imagination of the sci-fi and fantasy world.
Sure, I haven’t been able to embrace everything – I confess I have no interest in role playing or Anime or miniature war gaming – but I think it is nice that we still have our own unique interests. And if you think I got a raw deal out of this, don’t worry – my husband watches the occasional romantic comedy (he secretly enjoys them) and I actually managed to get him to watch most of the royal wedding with me last night – a serious win for me!