Wednesday, October 09, 2002

And awaaaaay we go! Thursday evening at this time my little bride and I will be holed up in a Holiday-Inn Express in Eden Prairie, Mn. It has been almost 25 years since she signed on as my side-kick on this wild ride we call "life." At least that's what I want to believe. As it turns out, reality shows that I am her side-kick. It's a pretty awesome thing when your wife is the most Godly person you know. It use to be that whenever I would lose something, she would know where it was. I have never seen anything like it. You see, I am one of those people whose brains have gotten full a little early on in life. I am now storing all new knowledge in my toes. It takes longer to retrieve it there. But Debbie knows everything. I use to do what I always do... come into the house... take off my glasses... set them down... and walk away. Within five minutes I was trying to figure out where they were. I would ask Debbie. She would always know. The amazing thing is that usually she had not even been in the room where I had left them. Still... she would most always be right. I finally wised up and bought a spare pair of glasses to I can usually trip over one by sheer accident. That means I don't have to ask her where they are nearly so often. But if I were a betting man my money would be on her.

I have been married one out of every nine days that the United States has existed as a nation. Say what? Yup. Do the math. I think this whole experiment in democracy began in 1776? That is convenient when you are dividing by 25's. Four quarters in the 1800's. Four quarters in the 1900's. One quarter in the 1700's. Two years to spare in the 2,000's. So I'm more or less correct. I find that positively shocking.

And what does the little woman get for putting up with me for this long? Well. She gets a rented Sebring convertible for a few days. She gets to ride up north where the leaves are already peaking in their race to their doom. She gets a tour of the biggest mall in America though she isn't much of a shopper. (By the way, I really didn't take that into consideration when marrying her. It has worked to my advantage though.) She gets to eat wherever she wants for five days and she doesn't have to wash one dish. She gets showered with love and affection. She gets my undivided attention. She gets to sit beside the clean part of the mighty, muddy, Mississippi River. And then she gets to race the water that she sees home so that she can see it pass by again. It doesn't really seem like much for giving me three children and twenty-five years. I ought to be able to come up with something better. It's just that, well, how do you thank somebody for sharing their life with you? How do you say thanks for being your partner, washing your dirty socks, and expecting so little in return?

Last year, 2001, was a pretty tough year at our house. It was mainly my fault. I was sick a lot last year. It wasn't fun but it was educational. I learned that when you treat life like it is long... by savoring the moments rather than packing all you can into them... life seems longer. I learned that as important as my work is my personal relationships are more important. That is especially true about my personal relationship with God. But that's a Sunday School thing to say so please over look it for now. Human relationships are more important than my work too. But then, human relationships are my work. Look, I don't want to talk about work right now so forget that I said that too. Life is about relationships. Lot's of people loved on me last year and a few of them paid big bucks for the privilege. I owe them a debt I cannot repay because they helped me to get well. But this wife of mine, this woman that sleeps next to me every night... wow. When I hurt... she held me. When I couldn't work... she did my job for me. When I couldn't see straight to drive... she drove me. When I needed to rest... she lay down next to me. When I couldn't pray... she prayed for me. When I couldn't find words... she spoke for me. My wife knows what it means to be a wife. She is an expert at it. She could teach a college level course in wifeship. Unfortunately, nobody is going to ask her to. That's a shame because wives to be, and young wives, need to know what she knows. Her knowledge could save a lot of marriages.

I can't repay Debbie for the wife she has been for twenty-five years. Certainly a trip to Minnesota to see the leaves change isn't gonig to even us up. I don't know what to do to possibly tell her what I'm thinking and how I'm feeling. I owe a debt I cannot pay. But the really strange thing is this... she doesn't seem tired of me yet. She does not mind when I forget where my glasses are. She lets me pile all of these wires by my side of the bed so that I can sit here and Blog while she sleeps next to me. I suspect that most wives would use the scissors on them. She doesn't usually laugh at my jokes but that's because they usually are not funny and she is, if anything, honest. I am not sure but I think she's signing on with me for another twenty-five years. That's the only thing I can think of that makes me wonder if she really isn't as smart as I have believed. What it all comes down to is this... the woman has one flaw that I can find... she has bad taste in men. And you know what? I"m really, really, glad.