Sunday, February 22, 2009

Just the three of us

Today was a special day. A hard day. A fun day.

A memorable day.

Yesterday, I was moved by life and love to give my wife something I don't think I've ever fully given; a day to herself. With this came the promise that I'd stay with the kids and everyone would still be alive when she returned. We have a couple of wonderful kids, so this wasn't too hard a promise to make. Just the same, it was a big commitment...on both our parts. While I was promising to care for and entertain our kids totally solo, she sort of had to promise to accept the gift and have a good time. That's easier said than done for my bride. She's a woman about her responsibilities and has been in the mode of mommy long enough for it to fully become her. With either of us, having a solo time out with a couple of friends takes effort. Neither likes to leave the other behind.

But she accepted with a joy and surprise that told me this sort of gift just isn't given often enough. A mental note was made to make this a more regular thing. Still working on that. So off she went after some preparation. A quick Wal-Mart trip had to be made to replenish the rations in the house. We have one car in the family, so there would be no mid-day escape to Zaxby's for Dad and the kids. The food was brought home, sorted and Mommy was sent off for a day of fun.

It was just the three of us.

There were a number of things I wanted to get to today, and surprisingly we did. My daughter, son and I worked together to get the many loads of laundry folded, do some computer maintenance on one of our rebuilds, play kick-dodge ball, draw in my daughter's ongoing storybook, play an Xbox game together, and of course eat. There were a couple minor things that I fantasized getting to that turned out to be unrealistic, but there were far more successes than failures today. Far more.

Managing the day the way I had to, with both recreational and operational obligations to uphold, totally renewed my appreciation for the load my wife bears on a daily basis. I'm not saying I was oblivious to what she does for this family before, but I am duly reminded of the significant difference between sympathy and empathy. I did for a day what at times she would do for an entire week--especially this past week as our daughter was home from school. For five days straight, it was just the three of them. Not an easy stretch of time.

There will be more of these 'day gifts.' There needs to be. My wife is young, beautiful, outgoing, and needs to be reminded that she is not totally defined by motherhood. Then again, she is a pretty hot momma.

And there ain't nothin' wrong with that.

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