Let me count the ways…
I could list all the things I do for Bill to show him how much I love him, but that would be bragging. I could list all the things I love about him, but maybe on another blog post.
One bit of advice I might give to a married woman (only if asked for advice, of course) is to keep a vision in her head of her husband at his best. This vision will sustain her the 99.9% of the time he isn’t at his best. It is difficult, when angry or upset, to recall to mind nice things about that person who is driving you crazy, so it is a good idea to put into writing that vision, and then refer to it as needed (daily, perhaps).
Here are ways that Bill shows me he loves me. These acts contribute greatly to that vision I have of him, plus I want him to know that I appreciate them, even if I can’t always acknowledge it.
1. He makes the bed.
2. He never complains if he has to hunt for clean socks and underwear.
3. He eats whatever I serve him and is grateful.
4. He swaps his toothbrush head out for mine, so I don’t have to.
5. He never complains about the tidiness (or lack thereof) of the house.
6. When he did laundry after Mary was born, he carefully read and followed directions on all garments to ensure he did a good job.
7. He “pinch hits” frequently with various household chores like the dishes.
8. He takes out the garbage.
9. He brings me the baby in the middle of the night.
10. He re-tucks scared big kids into bed in the middle of the night.
11. He makes me drinks.
12. He immediately goes out to buy me a new microwave when I set the old one on fire.
13. He calls me a saint.
14. He tells me I’m too good for him.
15. He tells me he doesn’t deserve me.
16. He makes his own lunch.
17. He tells me every “bad wife” story he hears so I’ll feel good in comparison.
18. He tells me I’m beautiful.
19. He gives me hugs.
20. He sits with me on my porch swing.
21. He puts together my porch swing, and takes it apart, and puts it back together again after our move as soon as possible.
22. He begs for my attention.
23. He tells me how happy he is that we are married.
24. He rubs my furrowed brow to remind me to smile.
25. He tells me that he can’t live without me, but that he wants me to die first, so that I don’t have to mourn him.
26. He sits with our reluctant student in the evening to help him finish the schoolwork he didn’t finish earlier in the day.
27. He calls me from work just to say he misses me.
28. He emails me things he thinks I would find interesting.
29. He asks my opinion.
30. He listens to my advice.
31. He goes along with my crazy schemes.
32. He welcomes my family for month-long visits.
33. He hangs pictures, curtains, shelves etc with precision and whenever I ask him.
34. He buys me chocolates.
35. He lectures the children if he thinks they are harassing me.
36. He never refuses a request for time without the children.
37. He supports and encourages me in my running.
38. He never complains or questions my spending of money.
39. He doesn’t get mad when I damage the car or get pulled over for speeding.
40. He laughs at my jokes.
Happy birthday, sweetheart. Thank you for everything you do for me and for our children.
I hijacked my husband’s blog and made an entry in honor of his birthday, which is tomorrow. Bill turns 40. One of the funniest blog posts I ever saw was when people left made-up stories of their favorite memories of the blogger (I don’t remember who did this). So, please, to say happy birthday to Bill, hop over here and tell him about something that didn’t happen to you two. If you can do it before noon today, it will be even funnier, since he’ll see your comment via email, but will not have access to his blog to see what you are writing about. This is a great day for all you lurkers to leave a comment.
Happy 40th, Bill! Gosh, I remember your 21st when we…
Bill, birthday greetings! Remember that time in NYC…
Bill, did you ever tell Michelle about that time we…
Bill, you and Michelle will have to come over again. I’m still laughing about last Saturday when…
I held a pre-dawn couch conclave this morning. Jenny snuggled on my right and Peter on the left. Somehow I managed to sip coffee and skim a book. The baby was exploring, but I had no worries because the basement door was closed. What could she possibly get into?
A moment later my mother’s ears detected a change in her babbling. Just as we learn to distinguish a baby’s cries, and know when something is seriously wrong and we need to respond immediately, so, too, can we tell when a contented baby becomes too happy. Sounds of overwhelming joy from an unattended infant are not normal and require immediate attention.
I ran down the hall and found her, standing at the open toilet, splashing to her heart’s content.
…at big people parties.
And the other one.
More hugging (more indulgent uncle).
Obstacles to overcome.
It’s been less than two years, and yet, I had forgotten…
…how much sleep is lost when a baby is teething (that’s okay, sleep is overrated).
…how opinionated a 10 month old can be (as in, no, I don’t want this toy, I want that choking hazard).
…how curious a person this young can be (as in, what’s behind this door?)
…how much memory a baby can have (as in, behind that door are books).
…how much frustration a baby can display (as in, I WAAAAAANT TO GET BEHIND THAT DOOOOR!).
…how persistent an infant can be (yes, she’s still trying to figure out the door).
And, I had forgotten…
…how one or two weeks of sleepless nights will feel like forever until you realize that she’s almost a year old and you wonder how that happened so fast.
…how cute babies are when they do raspberries.
…how a ten month old has a sense of humor and will laugh hard if you do something funny.
…how a baby’s entire body expresses joy, especially when she sees mommy.
…how little hands and arms can hug so tightly and little mouths can kiss so sweetly.
I was happy to talk to Bill this afternoon for over an hour. He didn’t get to Mass today. He’s not on American soil, and this morning he wasn’t on an American installation of any kind.
In fact, at 4 am, the loudspeaker outside his room blares prayers in a foreign language.
He’s coming home soon.
My brother-in-law in Iraq gets to attend Mass every other Wednesday. He’s been entrusted with the Host, so they can have a Communion Service on Sundays.
I don’t care how you spend your Sundays, but thank God you have a choice.