State of the Union

guys-skiingA few weeks ago I kissed my husband goodbye at the door.  He was on his way for a testosterone heavy weekend filled with skiing, beer, male bonding, and no doubt, copious fart jokes and lack of sex commiseration. For three days he could stop being Husband, Father, and the Holy Worker and just be one of the guys.

As I closed the door behind him, I realized, with a little surprise, I was happy.

Not happy because I could lounge around in leg-warmers and sweat pants all weekend (I do that anyway). Not happy because I could roll into the middle of the bed or watch a sappy movie with a bottle of wine and a bowl of chips.

Not even happy in a fine, if you really need to get away from us all, go ahead! way. It genuinely made me happy that he was going, without me, to do something which made him happy.

It sounds like a simple thing, right? Who wouldn’t be happy because their spouse was happy?

Er….

woman-with-suitcase

There were plenty of golf days and work trips where I was anything but happy. When the kids were young and we hoarded alone time the way my grandmother used to hoard tin foil, every minute spent away from the demands of the family was mentally calculated and tabulated. Time “off” was often given grudgingly and tinged with resentment. On one fateful occasion, as I pulled away from the curb with tires squealing to do the grocery shopping, my husband stood at the door, baby in his arms, shouting “This count as alone time!”

He was joking.

Mostly.

So, there were plenty of times when I was slightly less than happy when my spouse was off doing something that made him happy.

Does that make me a horrible, selfish person? Maybe. But probably it just makes me normal.

In any relationship it’s easy to get caught up in who does what, who slept later, who scrubbed the toilet last. Throw some kids into the batter and the ante gets upped. Who changed the last diaper, who’s slept less, who’s given up bladder control in exchange for propagating the species. Sometimes seeing your spouse or partner happy becomes an afterthought. And sometimes, if we’re being honest, you don’t want to see them happy at all, you want them to be as miserable as you feel after months of 2 am feedings.

Harsh. But true.

suitcase-manBut there I was, standing at the door, genuinely happy that my husband was happy at the idea of spending time away, not necessarily from us, but with others. A chance to let his husband/father guard relax. If he had hair, I can imagine it would have been let down. A long time ago we used to snigger at the idea of separate vacations. Who would want that, we thought. We were young(ish), in love, wrapped up in the idea of each other as well as physically around each other. But here we are. Solid in our marriage. Secure in the knowledge that our love and respect for one another are able to withstand physical distance–even if it includes fart jokes and jibes about infrequent sex.

I never thought to gauge the state of our union by a fondue heavy ski trip with the guys. I never thought watching him pull away form the curb, metaphorical tires screaming, would make me happy. Not for me, but for him.

I’d say the state of our union is pretty damn good.

 

 

Advertisements

6 thoughts on “State of the Union

  1. RupLB February 6, 2017 / 8:45 pm

    It’s been awhile since I read one of your posts (sorry) and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I felt quite uplifted. And you really get “guys’ weekends”. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dina Honour February 6, 2017 / 9:01 pm

      Still not going to get a green light for Bangkok though ;-). Thanks. I’m trying to balance out the political with the observational. For now 😉

      Like

  2. Ch February 6, 2017 / 9:46 pm

    Well done. You will miss each other, that’s good.
    Bangkok – you HAVE to go to Thailand and not just Bangkok !

    Liked by 1 person

  3. teachinglife2016 February 7, 2017 / 6:23 pm

    I totally understand how you feel when your husband is happily doing stuff that he likes. After 46 years I am so glad when he is doing whatever he likes and I can do whatever I like. What a gift.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Paul Grizenko February 9, 2017 / 8:43 am

    YESSSS!!! You get it. Totally.

    Actually, I’m one of those guys who doesn’t need a “guys” weekend. I get my kicks from going on long, solitary kayak trips. Me, my boat, and water. It’s a time when I can paddle for hours at a fast pace, totally in the moment, pushing my body beyond discomfort and pain to that point of evanescent being. Meditation at 140 beats per minute. Connection with mortality, water, hard effort, and perseverance. And when I finally glide back to the shore, the love of my life meets me, helps me bring the boat to the house, and makes me feel like I’m home again.

    Last year, she went to an artist retreat, learning new techniques, new ideas, new ways of experiencing her talent. I was happy for her to go – for she comes back with enthusiasm, zest, inspiration, and happiness in the joy of discovery. And when we sit and she tells me – I live her experience, though her eyes.

    Even when we’re apart, it’s a shared experience. If not immediately, it will be over time. An opportunity to live a second life. How wonderful is that?

    Liked by 1 person

Talk to me, Goose.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s