On Wednesday evening, I caught the flu my two-year-old had just ditched. I stayed home Thursday, but was determined to make it to the office on Friday. Why was I so determined? First off, my cube is quiet and tidy, unlike my home. I cherish my time there.
Second, a beloved teammate was in from another office this week. I so seldom get to see him, I wasn’t about to let a little thing like “recuperating” keep me from the office.
Finally, it was a rare jersey day. With the Super Bowl just a couple of days away, I could wear a jersey and sneakers to the office! How could I sit that out?
My husband, Anthony, loves hockey and owns at least a dozen jerseys. At first, I put on one from his alma mater. It more or less matched my comfy toe shoes, which was this sports-ambivalent person’s main criteria for choosing a jersey.
Seeing myself in it, unfortunately, I could easily imagine a dozen conversations explaining that, no, I didn’t actually go there. (Been there, done that. It’s no fun for an introvert, even one in peak health!)
Anthony brought out one from a bin under our bed. Unlike the first, this one, a gift from his third season on a show for which he worked five years, had shared meaning. I’d worked on the show as an extra once, when my husband and I were newly dating. My heart fluttered when I caught a glimpse of him from the bleachers, and again when he swung by to say hello. Read more…
My politically moderate husband and I were just arguing in the kitchen.
“Deborah, you need to tell people that you’re trying to figure shit out by writing about it.”
“I already did! I do it, like, every fifth post on Learning to Speak Politics. Are you saying I need to spell it out in every single post?! I mean, the entire premise is in the blog’s title. I’m learning by writing!”
“Yes! You need a note on every. Single. One. Copy and paste it: ‘I am not a Trump supporter! I did not vote for Trump! I am literally live-broadcasting my political journey, and this is my scratchboard! I’m making it public so you can aid that evolution! I’m not at an endpoint but walking a road. I’m trying to figure out what I believe and why I believe it!‘”
He’s probably right. I don’t know what that footnote will be, exactly, but I do know its first incarnation was the preface I wrote on my politics page a few months back:
This page reflects a selection of politics-related articles
curated by a (new) U.S. third party voter.
While both main-party presidential candidates threaten
prospects of retaining any semblance of U.S. democracy,
links below emphasize the Democratic threat,
which is all the more horrifying because
it’s hidden under the guise of
My journey of discovery began from a place of shock and horror. I thought my votes for Democrats (versus Republicans) were votes for peace. They weren’t.
So now, understanding this … it’s up to me to figure out how I can play a role in propagating actual peace–positive, not negative, justice.
No one else has paved this road for me. No one else can pave it for me.
My husband just told me not to argue with my team. But who is my team? Right now, I’m not sure.
The people I thought were my team spent the last six months yelling at me for ever disagreeing.
So maybe it’s up to me not to yell. Maybe it’s up to me to be even clearer
that I’m simply
“You’re on the 30s track, aren’t you?” my six-year-old asked of my age yesterday.
Laughing, I agreed I am. Nodding toward my husband, I added, “And he’s on the 40s track!”
A little later, I couldn’t help but notice how the 40s track suits him.
I’m already looking forward to his 50s track.
Most folks who know my husband know him as the quieter, gentler half of this couple. That’s often all they know of him, so they think of him as “gentle” and laugh about how he once cried on national TV.
Last night, I came inside after a confrontation with our neighbors and explained to him what had just happened. His face got stormy, following which he very quietly put on his shoes and went outside.
He returned six minutes later to explain what had just happened. It all made sense, and all will be okay going forward. I was grateful that he’d had the conversation.
But his face was steel, just steel, when he relayed his starting message to our neighbors: “Don’t you ever talk to my wife like that again.”
I can hold my own. If you read my blog, you know this. I have held my own since I was very small, so that it astonishes me when anyone else speaks to protect me.
Because of all this, I sometimes forget how seriously he takes his vows of for-better-or-worse.
He loathes confrontation, but he loves me more.
That’s somethin’, folks.
That’s somethin’ lovely.
If we were having coffee, you’d find me all smiles as I sipped my sparkling water.
After listening intently to your recounting of what’s been up with and what’s ahead for you, I’d pause for a moment to consider where to begin. Is chronological best, or should I take some other route to explaining why I’m smiling so?
I’d land on my son’s birthday as a springboard into explaining everything.
Littler J turned two on Friday. (How’d that even happen? I’d say with a puzzled glance. I just brought him home!) I took off the afternoon from work to spend it with my boys and sister. We feasted at–or made a ginormous mess of, in Littler’s case–our birthday favorite restaurant before spending a few hours at Anaheim’s Adventure City, a pint-sized theme park for pint-sized little ones. Read more…
I was never, ever going to get married. If you’ve read my blog for years or came to it via my “Dear Mom” post, you know this about me.
In my post “Just Married,” I described getting married as being
like releasing a bike’s brakes near the top of a hill after trundling along at a crawl. It’s scary to let go, but liberating at the same time: I am bigger than my fear! Take thaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat! YEAH!
Partnership doesn’t come as naturally to me as it does to my husband, Anthony. Sometimes it still feels weird and scary and ill-fitting. Other times, I’m overwhelmed by the sweetness in seemingly small moments and think how glad I am to be learning.
There’s usually at least one kid in my bed all hours of the day and night.
Tonight, my husband and I have the bed to ourselves for the first time in … oh, weeks!
As I sniffled and snickered my way through the YA novel The Porcupine of Truth, I smiled at the weight of my sleeping husband’s hand on my hip. When he drifted further into sleep, his hand fell off my hip and back onto the bed. Mrpfh, he mumbled as he placed his hand back on my hip. Where it belongs.
This he did over and over until I finally poked him half-awake. “Hon?”
“Yeah?” he murmured groggily.
“You keep on rousing yourself to put your hand on my hip. It’s the sweetest thing. Do you mind if I write about it?”
“Go ah–” he got out before resuming his deep sleep-breathing.
When I rose to write this post, Anthony patted the warm spot where I’d been and made a soft, sad murmur.
“I’ll be right back, hon,” I promised, smiling all the way to my desk chair, where I now sit in darkness, sweet darkness, thinking how grand it is to have so, so very much to learn, and to be able to learn it guided by such tenderly moved hands.
If we were having coffee, I’d tell you I was sorry for having to cancel so many coffee meetings. The last month or so has been … different. I wouldn’t even bother trying to explain. It’d take too much time, and I’d rather hear what’s going on with you, anyway.
(You could find hints of it here, if you were curious.)
For my part, I’d sip sparkling water and tell you I had two terrible nightmares this last week. It’s been a long time since I had nightmares I remembered for more than two seconds after awakening, but both of these were ones I doubt I’ll ever forget. One was horror-movie terrifying; the other, me-at-37 terrifying.
I’d tell you how another friend asked why I’d have a job-related nightmare when my new job is so perfect for me. I’d explain how I smiled and said, “I think maybe it’s my subconscious’s way of saying, ‘You can let it all go now.'” Read more…