Well, we’re nearing that mushy holiday—Valentine’s Day! When boyfriends and husbands dash out to buy chocolate, flowers or, perhaps jewelry in hopes of pleasing their loved one. I don’t know about you, but I think that’s way too much pressure on men. Makes me glad I’m a woman. I usually give my husband, Guy, some cinnamon hearts, and strawberries with whipped cream. I know I have the easy end of things.
This holiday got me thinking about love and marriage. What makes things work and what doesn’t. I can’t say I am an expert as I’m still on my first husband. I haven’t struggled through a marriage that had affairs or addictions. Yet, we’ve been through job losses and serious illnesses and a crapload of other things.
I remember Guy losing his job—many were let go the same day—when our firstborn was one week old. How’s that for a jolt of stress? Yet, it all worked out for the best. He soon found work as a night school instructor at the college. Which resulted in him spending even more time than we thought possible with our newborn. And, to help me. Funny the only time our little one was colicky was in the evening when he taught!
We’ve been through some serious medical stuff that left me a wreck for years, worried I’d lose him. However, we not only got through it, but we’re also stronger than ever. Maybe it’s because we don’t take each other for granted?
I can’t really tell you why things worked out for us. Maybe we’re resilient, maybe we didn’t want to stop trying, or maybe we both know the grass isn’t greener on the other side. But I have a feeling it’s because I married a wonderful man in the first place. It can’t be me.
The other day Guy did a small thing and it hit me, “That’s it! That’s why we’ve lasted through 36 years of marriage.”
I’d been taking photos in the backyard after an ice storm. Just five minutes to snap a few pics.
I somehow managed to get a huge smudge on my lens. I wanted to borrow Guy’s camera, but I hesitated. It was extremely icy out and I risked falling and damaging my own camera. He should really have a say in whether he wanted to risk this for his equipment, or not.
I texted him.
I waited. I could see Guy was typing but the words weren’t coming up. Uh-oh, it wasn’t looking like it’s going to be a simple “yes” or “no” answer. He later told me he was slow to complete his text because he was in a meeting at the time and taking another call meanwhile.
It’s the little things like that. I left with his camera and practically skated down the driveway to reach my car. The driveway was a pure sheet of ice. I wondered if my daughter was right. She had warned me not to go out. The roads weren’t safe! It was freezing rain now. I hoped it would let up.
Well, the rain did stop, and the park was incredibly icy slippery, but I managed some shots, thanks to Guy lending me his camera.
Later, I thanked him again. He said, “Of course, I would lend you my camera. Why not? What’s mine is yours!”
I reminded Guy how I smashed a camera lens at our youngest’s one-year birthday party. Thankfully the party was done, and the milestone photos were already taken. While cleaning up the party aftermath, I absent-mindedly flung open the lid of the Herby Curby garbage can . . . and flung the camera sitting atop it to the concrete sidewalk! I screamed, practically hysterical at what I’d done. And, what did Guy say to me? He calmly said, “It’s okay, babe. I’ll fix it, or I’ll buy us a new one.”
He told me he remembered it like it happened yesterday.
“But a camera is only a thing. And your happiness is everything to me.”
He continued, “Remember when I fell down the basement stairs while carrying Monique as a baby? I held her up high, as I twisted my back, and half-rolled down the stairs. Well, that’s how I know you would treat my camera if you fell. As if it were your baby.”
Guy had a point there. When I wiped out rollerblading last summer, my first thought was to protect the camera. My knee needed stitches, but the camera was perfectly fine. And, I was okay with that.
Guy added, “Besides, if you broke my camera, I know you’d buy me a new one!”
I chuckled, and replied, “Sure, I would. With your credit card. Remember? What’s yours is mine, ha-ha!”
Happy Valentine’s Day to all of you! Keep your love alive!