Tuesday, September 20, 2011

in the moment

Fate smiled on my wife the day she met me. I am not at all shy about saying how much I have improved her life and I am more than willing to accept the credit. This morning is a prime example of why she is so lucky to have me around.

The day started with our youngest and a wet bed. My wife needs to be out the door by a specific time to beat the traffic so I am in charge of getting our two sons dressed and out the door for school. If there is bed wetness, I am the Brawny man pro-tem.

Shortly after her discovery, my lovely wife (and I do mean lovely, she is the most special woman in the world and has helped me so much as a writer) tried to get out the door with her laptop, a cup of coffee, her purse, a lunch box, and two books, all in her hands. At least one of them was going to fall. Turns out it was the coffee, closely followed by a book, both of which fell onto the kitchen floor (just inches from the door too).

I felt so bad for her. She knew she didn't have time to stop and clean it up. She could not even afford to pull the paper towels. Cleaning up that mess was all about me being there for her and honestly, that is when I feel the most like a husband. I told her to go and I would get it. The quicker I got her to stop looking at the coffee seeping under the freezer and into the area rug, the less guilt she would feel and the lesss counselling I would have to do later.

Plus, it really isn't that hard to clean that little stuff up. I was a single dad for 10 years before meeting my current wife. Once you get a cleaning rhythm down, it all comes so easy. Paper towels to arrest the seeping, then dry mop then wet mop, roll the carpet back to dry and done. Easy peasie coffee squeezie.

I got the linens in the wash early enough so I could say goodbye to my 13yo before he headed for the bus, then made my coffee and breakfast while waiting for the cycle to complete. Got little guy out of bed and brushing teeth while the wet stuff went in the dryer. Bada bing!

And just to make it look easy, before I took the little guy to school, we even managed to pick some grapes from our vines in the back yard. Can fathering be hard work? Yes, only if you are doing it right. Love is really love when it hurts. And today I felt the pain.

I have a therapist friend who says the best thing to remember about pain is that you have to be alive to feel pain. Julianna Hatfield sings a heart that hurts is a heart that works. They both may be right, yet they both fail to capture the essence of love as an expression through service. It is the very best way to say you love someone.

So here is to you dear, my lovely wife, who through your humanity gave me a way to say I love you.