Hey husband. You spent Valentine’s Day evening cleaning out my shower drain. You lectured me as you carried the culprit clog to the trash, shooting me a look of annoyance. Our Valentine’s Dinner was take-out because we are in the height of flu season and as a household of five, we couldn’t dodge it.
You get me a snack when you stop for gas, even when I say I don’t want one. (That was a mistake you didn’t make twice after a long, big fight. Now you know that when I say I don’t want something, it isn’t true.) You know which gas stations to stop at – the ones that have the crushed ice that I love. When we meet at a restaurant and I’m running late, you order for me and you always just seem to know what I would get.
For 212 Wednesdays (give or take a couple), you’ve rolled our trash can down our driveway, so I don’t have to. You even remember to put in a new bag after you take out the old one. You fix the vacuum (which is related to the same culprit as the drain) and every time you cut the hair out, you swear this will be the last time you do it. We both know it’s not the last time because you’ve done it for years, and I’m glad you do. (Also, just to clarify, I’m forever okay with you fixing the drains, too.) We argue about the dishwasher needing emptied or if it is empty, why there are dishes in the sink if they can go in the dishwasher. We will have this argument forever. You say I have too many clothes and too many shoes – and that might be true. For the rest of my days, I’ll have a pile of clothes laying around somewhere and shoes to trip over which will infuriate you for the rest of your days. There’s laundry in every room and it’s a battle I can’t win. (Never. Going. To win.)
We will forever have the argument where you didn’t know about whatever activity or event I told you about, even though I told you. (I always tell you. Agree to disagree.) You have strong opinions on the thermostat setting and when we leave lights on, just like most dads do.
When I cook something you don’t like, which is more often than I want to admit, you pour some extra ketchup and eat it anyway. You tell me, “It’s not bad,” even when we know it is. (Sometimes it’s so bad.) I love that on the mornings it’s extra cold, you start my car for me. You always tell me I let my tank go too low, followed by a lecture on a fuel pump which I don’t understand. This is another conversation we will have until the end of our days.
We used to tell ourselves we would never let the everyday become our every day. Suddenly we are mid 30s and we did let the everyday become our every day. We have careers and small children and ballet and basketball. We have schedules that keep us so busy we don’t know if we are coming or going. The thing is, at the end of the day, I know my shower drain is going to be fixed. I know when we have a date at a restaurant, it’s for a table of five and three kids’ menus. We tag team as one of us handles two tic-tac-toe games while the other keeps the toddler from throwing crackers at the next table. I know that you hate my Christmas light obsession down to your soul, but every year, you still hang them for me.
At the end of the day, I just want to sit on the couch with you and watch our shows. I love that when you decide to call it a night but I’m still up with paperwork, you turn it to Friends because you know it’s my favorite. I love that I hear you talking to the cat even though you repeatedly swear, “Never again!” when it comes to another indoor pet. We promised each other once upon a time ago that we would give each other our best day in and day out. I didn’t realize back then, that my best meant grocery shopping after a 10-hour work day or re-scheduling my meetings so you don’t have to re-schedule yours. Your best meant scraping ice off my windows in the mornings or coaching basketball even when you barely have spare minutes to give.
Tomorrow morning you will ask me who messed with your thermostat, knowing it was me (since I’m the only other one who can reach it) and I’ll wonder why you even ask a question you know the answer to. Thanks for all the things you do, especially the things you don’t want to do. Love you, husband. Thanks for spending this life with me.