Honey, I Do Really Need You ~ SOL # 8~2017

“Honey, did you look at my tire?” I questioned my husband last night.

“Yup. Fixed it,” he mumbled, as he was trying to watch a hockey game and do some research on his tablet.

“What? What did you do?”

“I fixed it,” he repeated.

“Well, I mean, did you just air it up, was there a hole in it or did you replace it with my spare? What?”

“Don’t worry, hon.  It’s fixed.”

“Well, I need to know if I need to keep airing it up or if I should get my tire replaced.”

“It will be fine.  It’s as good as new.”

My husband likes to play this game.  Sometimes I don’t think he wants me to know his secrets.   This way, too, I can maintain an image of my husband as the “man who can fix anything and I don’t know how he does it.” For perhaps, if I know what he did exactly, I could repeat it and fix it myself, or worse yet, have someone else do it.

Yup. That has to be it.

Men do like to save a damsel in distress.  It’s good for their egos.

It wasn’t always this way.

I am a pretty self-sufficient woman.  I was raised on a farm.  Farm girls drive dump trucks at 13 years old. . . tractors. . . combines.  I’ve built an outside jungle gym, laid tile and installed a sump pump. I have my own Harley (well. . . if he’s going to have one).

It really isn’t my fault.

My mother was German. And Polish.  My dad was Irish. There was nothing she could not do.

For Pete’s Sake.

This independence in a wife might be something a husband brags about from time to time. But, deep down, if I really were to dig, I wonder how much damage I’ve done.

My husband has confessed before that really, he didn’t think that I needed him.

“Oh honey,” I’d reply, “Of course, I do!” in my don’t-be-silly voice.

“For what?” he’d probe, seriously.

“Well, um, I need you to change those yard light bulbs when they burn out.  There is no way I could ever do that!”

That really was not what he was looking for in a list of things I needed him for.

In my attempts to do all and be all, whether trying to pad my own ego or prove my worth, I’m pretty sure that I’ve squelched some of the “saving” that a husband sometimes needs to do in order to feel his own self-worth.  I don’t regret my efforts, but. . . I do regret not giving my husband more opportunities to feel like he was needed more.

So, I’ve softened a bit.

There is a sweet space in between being an independent, self-sufficient woman and honey-I-need-you- 24/7.

Finding the essence of this place has been a difficult journey for me.

But, I’m learning.

Now excuse me, my husband needs me.  He’s burning hamburgers. . .

Shari 🙂

I’m participating in twowritingteachers March Challenge of posting a blog post every day for the month of March.  To check out other writers, visit here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A Poem A Day: Birthday Gifts To Me

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There is something about a poem that reaches into your soul and grabs you there.  A poem can speak loudly in so few words  causing you to pause for a moment to say the words over in a hope that they might land in your memory for you to retrieve at a later time.

Maybe that’s why I love them so much.

When life moves into auto pilot, I neglect poetry.  But, somehow, it always seems to find it’s way back to me.  We are like old friends – so grateful to have crossed paths again and we reminisce for a spell.

September is my birthday month.  I enjoy giving myself small birthday gifts during the entire month of September.  These gifts do not usually cost anything; a walk along the river, a drive to the library or finding a small space amongst the trees in my backyard to write.  The best gifts are free.

This month, I’m giving myself the gift of poems.  A poem a day.

Some poems are from my poetry books, some I write.

Today’s poem found me.

Garrison Keillor, at his website, The Writer’s Almanac, posts a poem a day, along with other literary and historical notes about the current day in history.  It’s a lovely site.

Today’s featured poem was written by Kate Barnes.  Kate’s words could be my own words as I reflect on my birthday, time and getting older.  I’m only 51 years old, but I appreciate poetry that celebrates getting older.  We need to look forward to what many are not able to.

Here is her poem.

And my gift to myself today.

Future Plans

by Kate Barnes

When I am an old, old woman I may very well be
living all alone like many another before me
and I rather look forward to the day when I shall have
a tumbledown house on a hill top and behave
just as I wish to. No more need to be proud—
at the tag end of life one is at last allowed
to be answerable to no one. Then I shall wear
a shapeless felt hat clapped on over my white hair,
sneakers with holes for the toes, and a ragged dress.
My house shall be always in a deep-drifted mess,
my overgrown garden a jungle. I shall keep a crew
of cats and dogs, with perhaps a goat or two
for my agate-eyed familiars. And what delight
I shall take in the vagaries of day and night,
in the wind in the branches, in the rain on the roof!
I shall toss like an old leaf, weather-mad, without reproof.
I’ll wake when I please, and when I please I shall doze;
whatever I think, I shall say; and I suppose
that with such a habit of speech I’ll be let well alone
to mumble plain truth like an old dog with a bare bone.

“Future Plans” by Kate Barnes from Where the Deer Were. © David R. Godine, 1994. Reprinted with permission.

Hair Magic ~A Very Small Slice~ #sol16

“Mrs. Daniels! Something STRANGE is going on here!” a third grade boy muttered into my ear right after my writing workshop lesson.

“What, honey, what’s wrong?”

“Well,” he continued, “This morning, your hair was this caramel-chocolate color and now. . . well, it’s turning grey!”

My cheater reading glasses rested on top of my head, pulling back my bangs and hair along my hairline.  Note to self:  buy a box of hair color on the way home.  I laughed and I don’t think he knew why.  This boy had a serious question and wanted an answer for how hair can turn grey so fast.

“Are you magic?” he smiled.

I wish.

I tire of coloring my hair.  The box colors seem to last about two weeks on my grey patches now.  I can’t be running to a salon every month.  Geez.

“When can I start letting my hair go grey?”  I ask my friend.

“Oh, never!”  she warns.

“Seriously? I can’t do this until I’m 70.  My own mother JUST now stopped coloring her hair and it’s a beautiful grey.  I can’t go another 20 years.”

“Oh, but, we have to.”

Fine.

Another box of Clairol Nice and Easy ~Dark Auburn is purchased.

My poor little third grader is going to be so confused.

 

 

The Snooze Button ~ #sol16

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5:30am

The first reminder that the day is new comes from the tune of an alarm alongside my bed.

“Ugh,” I muffle, as I burrow deeper into my bedding.  My husband still sound asleep.

Snooze #1.

A snooze is 9 minutes.  Precisely.  A few snoozes are in store for this morning as the night before brought parent/teacher conferences until 8:00 pm.  It seemed I just left school and here my alarm was blaring that I needed to go back.

“No worries,” I calm myself, as I begin planning my outfit in my mind.  A black pair of pants hang in my closet and a sweater on my shelf, both, I know are clean.  They might not even require ironing.  Ten minutes is saved right there.  Dreamland calls me back to paradise.

5:39 am

Already.  I thought I’d just hit that snooze.  Geez.  I’m not getting up yet. There’s plenty of time.  I don’t need to be at school at 7:00 am today.  I’m giving myself a break.  I’m pretty convincing to myself.

Snooze #2.

Rolling over, my husband stirs, unshaken by the alarms and my snoozes.  I wrap my arm around him and dig underneath his fleece army blanket that he prefers to sleep beneath.  My own coverings of quilts I push off.  Each of us have contrasting preferences for nighttime blankets.  I need heaviness and he, light.

“You are wrapped up in there like Fort Knox,” he teases at night when I get ready for bed.

School dreams take me away this time.  My third graders are at gym and I can’t find the way there.

5:48am

Again.  Is there any way I can stretch the snoozes to be longer?

“Why don’t you just set your alarm for later?” my husband frequently asks, trying to remedy my problem.

“Because.  I like to have some warnings,” I profess.  “Snoozes give me a chance to feel like I get extra sleep.”

The snooze button is tapped again.  I snuggle back up to my husband, who is cool to the touch.

“Aren’t you cold?  You need more covers,” I mother him.

He ignores me and continues to slumber.  His scent of clorine from swimming takes me back to high school, he on the swim team and I, his girl friend.

Snooze #3.

6:24am

The alarm frustrated by now.  The spring sky growing lighter.

“I have to get up,” I whisper to my husband.

“What? Just five more minutes,” as he rolls over to wrap his arm around me.

Easily swayed,  “I guess I don’t need to wash my hair today.  I washed it yesterday,” I remind myself .  A benefit of long hair.

Snooze #9.  Seriously.

6:33am

Oh for Pete’s Sake.

“I have to go,” I urge my husband.

“Just one more snooze,” he begs.

I smile.

He really has no idea what time it is and how many snoozes have gone by,  not needing to be at work until 8:00.

Gone are the years of babies and night time feedings, waking children for daycare or dressing and feeding kids for school.  No longer are teenagers blaring music at night or sneaking in the door in the early morning hours.  Empty nesters, we play this game now.  Who can stay in bed the longest and still get to work?  (Still following our rule that if you are not there early, you’re late.)

This place.

I am grateful we made it to this place in our marriage.  The “children years” test every aspect of a marriage and when the offspring take wing,  a couple is weary and sometimes decide to trail off on their separate paths.  We persevered.

This place.

The morning snuggles with legs intertwined and rhythmic breathing.  I’m sure this is what heaven is like.  I whisper to God, thanking Him for mornings. . . and my husband. . . and his love.

And snooze buttons.