Sunday, October 16, 2016

Funny how it all works

It has been a different kind of weekend for me.

Wife is out of town -- out of the country, to be exact.

Over a year ago, she and and some lady friends started talking about a trip to Paris. Wife, Daughter and I went in 2013 and Wife just didn't get enough and once she found some friends who were interested in going -- sans husbands -- well, that's all it took.

As I have mentioned, Wife is quite the planner, and planning trips is right up her alley. She is looking toward retirement in the next year or so and while I don't know if she would want to be a full-fledged travel agent as such, she could certainly have a second career as a trip planner if anyone would be interested in enlisting her.

For some reason, she has the patience and intuition to sift through everything that's available on the Internet and travel books (Rick Steves, Fodor, etc.) and plan itineraries. I have been the beneficiary of this skill of hers (see recent post about our trip to Canada, and other previous posts) and now, three of her friends are traveling with her and enjoying her abilities.

That's not really the point I'm making here. The point I'm making is how incomplete I am without Wife around.

Now, I'll be the first to admit when she tells me about one of these adventures that doesn't include me, I have a sense of anticipation. I'll do just what I want, and just when I want to -- that is what I think to myself.

But I quickly find that those things are somewhat limited.

Yes, I stopped at my favorite craft brewery Friday afternoon before coming home. I always envision myself striking up a conversation with someone and becoming the life of the party . . . but truth be told, I'm an introvert, and I go in with a book or a newspaper in hand, happy to respond to someone who might initiate with me, but way too uncomfortable to start that interaction myself. The result: I enjoy the latest offering of the brewery, read my book/newspaper and come home.

I have friends. I really do. But I rarely feel comfortable calling and saying meet me at so-and-so, or anything of the sort. It's that introvert thing again. I really love people, but they make me tired, and I'm hesitant to initiate something I might end up wishing I had never started in the first place.

Which makes me, I am without a doubt, a perfect candidate for counseling or psychotherapy should I ever decide I'm that messed up (and I'm sure I am).

I have gotten a few things accomplished this weekend. I cleaned out the refrigerator yesterday morning, removing the crisper drawers and washing them, and discarding a few items that had long outlived their shelf life.

It's post-season baseball time and college football is right in the thick of it, so I watched some of that.

This morning I skipped church (I'm sorry about that, but it's that insecurity thing again, much preferring to have Wife sitting next to me) and opted instead to trim all the shrubs in the beds in front of the house.

This afternoon I went to a hipster coffee shop and since I don't drink coffee, opted for beer instead.

No, I have not drunk myself silly this weekend. Moderation in all things.

But if these times do nothing else, they remind me of how I am so much better with my better half.

I am so happy for her that she can make trips like this. I really am. And I would never for one minute deny her going.

And it's not like we have one of those marriages where she bows and scrapes -- quite the contrary. I'm very much an egalitarian and have never worried about who does the laundry or the cooking or the yard work (although she's a much better cook and I've told her if she'll cook, I'll gladly do everything else, which is laughable).

It comes down to the fact that we have been together 32 years, and I miss her.

Kind of funny, really. When our three children were all still at home and we were in the midst of raising them, and the occasional few days might come up where it was just me at the house, I could hardly believe my good fortune.

Yes, it's funny how that seems now.


Kelly said...

This post made me smile, Bob, and I can see a lot of myself in what you describe.

My husband has always worked from home and, since I gave up my "real" job shortly after we married, I've always been at home, too. So.... we've had more than our share of togetherness over the years. I loved duck season when he would often spend days at a time in the Delta. It gave me a chance to control the TV remote, eat cereal for supper if I wanted, or sit up reading all night (and sleeping in the next morning). But it's true - absence makes the heart grow fonder and I was always ready to have him home again when duck season was over.

These days I go to church alone every week and it's one of the reasons I love the early service I attend. A very small, intimate group.

On a side note, we went fishing last night and really got into the crappie! Had two great bass fishing outings earlier in the week.

Pumpkin Delight (Kimberly) said...

I love it! I was just having this conversation with some friends the other day. Generalizing here, but women are most often the planners and keepers of the family social schedule, and in addition socialize outside of that family time as well where men don't seem to do that as much once married. And you made our point! :)
How fun for her to travel independently with friends. In my humble opinion, that is what makes a relationship strong. You have fun together, but having solo endeavors is also important. As Kelly said, it makes it that much more fun being back together again. This is such a nice post. Will your get to read it?

Ed said...

I am reminded of the time my wife left me to go back to her home country for a few weeks before she started her new job. I being in the midst of a big project couldn't take the time off. She took off with my oldest (and only at the time) and I thought much like you. I instantly found myself coming home from work to an empty house and not being able to stand the silence. I would instead go out to the garage and I worked on remodeling the entire thing working until early morning hours so that I only had to be inside to physically use the bed. I was one happy person when they came home several weeks later. I learned my lesson those three weeks.

If I went to a bar with you Bob, we would be the only two sitting by ourselves drinking a beer and reading a book!

Debby said...

We are so blessed to have Brianna and William in the area. But Dec. 15th, Cara flies in and my son and DIL will pick her up. She will require 3 days or so to recuperate from the jet lag. Tim and I and Brianna and William will be heading there. I have an entire week off, as does Brianna. I cannot wait to have all our chicks under one roof.