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Nine Octobers

Nine years ago in September, I told the guy I was dating that I wanted to break it off. He wasn’t serious enough.

Nine years ago in October, I told that same guy that being unserious with him was better than being serious without him. We got together to watch Quarantine, and resumed our occasional dating.

F201310_WedRob_130our years ago in October, I married that guy. He walked side by side with our little boy that day; I carried our second little boy inside me.

Four days ago, this October, I took a day off work to watch a horror movie with that guy. My husband. My Anthony.

We watched It. Both of us yelped at least twice. It reminded me of that day nine years ago, getting back together-ish with him over Quarantine.

October with Anthony, man.

I wouldn’t miss it.

Anthony hasn’t worked steadily in his chosen profession for a couple years. To him, on some level, this means he hasn’t really worked. Read more…

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for better and worse

My husband,
and I
recently took
one last trip to Legoland
before we let our annual passes lapse

(Much as I enjoy
Legoland, I already spend
too much time driving on
the weekdays to drive
more, routinely, on
weekends)

It was Anthony’s birthday,
and I spent much time
that day thinking how
grateful I am that he
was born, and that
our paths crossed,
and that he is such
a loving father to
our boys

There was another
gratitude, too

Recently,
I have seen
what it looks
like
when one
partner doesn’t
like the way the
other is growing
and changing;
the little digs
and pushes
and scowls
that say,
“You’re not
supposed to
be like this. You
are supposed to
stay how I know
and like you,
meeting my needs
in exactly the ways
you always have,
whether or not
that meets

yours

As I watched
Anthony with our boys,
I heard the dozens of
different ways he’s
told me he doesn’t
expect me to
remain the same,
and appreciates
what I’m trying to
change, and
why

He sees the love
behind my sorrow-
fueled rages, and sees
how the balance is
shifting away from
rage and toward
love

He knows I’m changing;
I couldn’t be unchanged
by all I have read
about centuries of
cultivated devastation
driven by colonizers seeing
(and portraying)
“the other” as
simply a roadblock
to obtaining more,
and more,
and more

(He knew
about these things
long before I did)

So he sits with me
as I say things like
,
“Oh, my god, people
in drought and famine
exchanged their kids
because they couldn’t
eat their own;
others, too weak
to fight were carried
off by jackals
and the like,
and it would
never have been
that way if colonizers
cared more for building
structures to protect people
than extracting from them
everything capable of
extraction”

and he hugs me,
and says I should not
forget the beautiful things,
too; that acts of courage and
defiance abundant but too
small individually to
make it into
history
books,
were just as
real, and can be
just as real today
when those things
are celebrated and
cultivated over mourning
that looks like
rage

I am changing;
more than being
passively okay
with that,
Anthony actively supports me,
nudging me back toward
compassion (and occasional
fiction reads, because,
he rightly says,
no one’s life is
improved by
reading all political
history, all
the time)

I see
how it doesn’t have
to be this way; how easy
it is for some to say, “when I
said ‘for better or for worse,’
I meant ‘for,
forever,
exactly
the
same'”

I see that,
and I see
Anthony,

and I am
grateful
for how
the love
of my life
accepts
all of me,
as we grow,
(for)
better
and
worse

After reading this,
Anthony said, “It’s
weird seeing my name
so many times; usually
it’s just ‘Daddy,
Daddy, Daddy'”

He’s half correct:
he is usually
“Daddy,” but never
“just” that

The 40s track

“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.

image

I’m already looking forward to his 50s track.

Somethin’ lovely

wedding bwMost 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.

Categories: Communication, Family, Love Tags: , ,

Weekend Coffee Share: Ladies and gents, my husband!

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…

I Am Thankful

I don’t care for the origins of Thanksgiving, but I do care about giving thanks.

My thanksgiving has little to do with any national history and everything to do with thanks.

Tomorrow as I eat a small, turkey-free meal with my husband and sons, I will be thankful.

I am thankful.

I am thankful for this reminder to be thankful, and to reflect upon the many sources of my gratitude. Life gets so hectic, I sometimes need to be reminded to pause and take it all in. Read more…

Weekend Coffee Share: Dia de los Muertos

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you how glad I was to get away from my house for a little.

Feeling slightly abashed, I’d explain I believe it’s possible to have too much of a good thing, and that this fact is very much related to my recent quiet.

Once upon a time, I’d explain, I traveled light. I never wanted to have more than enough possessions that would fit tidily in one or two rooms, which oceans of space between them.

And then? Then I met my future husband. He sees empty space as a challenge: It must be overcome at any and all costs! I’d clear up a little pocket of space only to come back the next day and find a heap of boxes or papers or knick-knacks instead. Add to that a little kid and the space I yearned for was gone. Read more…

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