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Posts Tagged ‘Husband’

See this guy?  I think I may have married him.

Well, ok, so maybe he doesn’t look exactly like that.  Maybe more like THIS.

Yeah, that’s him.

For the most part, I’m pretty even-keeled.  I don’t get overly excited about good things nor do I get overly upset about not-so-good things.  I may raise my voice but I’m almost always tightly in control of my emotions.  This was actually a bit of a handicap when I was climbing the corporate ladder because, apparently, bosses need to see that you are enjoying yourself.   You can’t just do your job well.  You need to act like you love doing your job well.

When I was working at a PR firm, I placed a story about lightbulbs on the Today Show.  Freakin’ lightbulbs.  No joke.  It was a story I’d been pitching for months.  I’d worked hard on developing a relationship with a certain segment producer and all my work paid off.  When I got word that the story was a go, I sent my client and my boss a very matter of fact email letting them know.  I explained the story angle, the air date, the taping date and the travel arrangements.   Shortly after I sent the email, I received a phone call from my boss, asking that I come into her office.   She was amazed I hadn’t reacted more enthusiastically.  She was clearly bothered by the fact that I had scored such a HUGE placement for my client, on a top television show, and that my email could very well have been about placing a Public Service Announcement in the local weekly.   Where are the exclamation points?   The smiley emoticons?

Ridiculous.

A year or so later, I was working at a giant financial institution doing Event Planning.  It was a great job but a hard job full of travel and details and finicky clients.  I loved it and did well.  Well enough to eventually get a generous raise from my boss who called me into her office to give me the details.  She said very nice things about my work.  She said very nice things about my future within the group.  She presented me with a very nice salary increase.  I said “thank you very much” and smiled.  Then I was ready to return my desk.  She, apparently, wasn’t ready for me to return to my desk.   Because at my next review she brought up the fact that she was very disappointed by how I reacted to the raise.   That I didn’t turn cartwheels and sing “Happy Days Are Here Again” as I leaned over to kiss her fashionable shoes.

Whatever, lady.

I earned that raise.  I said “thank you”.  I’m just not the unbridled enthusiasm type.  Those that know me well, understand this trait.  I’m not a jump up and down, screechy, over-exciteable kind of girl.  I tend to be rationale and calm in most situations.  And while, surprisingly, this trait hurt me in the corporate world, it’s helpful to me in my role as a stay-at-home Mom.  Kids need an even keel to depend on as their own little ships toss about from one emotional outburst to the next.   We weather the storms nicely as a team, the three of us.  Most of the time.

But, sometimes, somedays…it’s the perfect storm.  And the seas have just tossed Mommy around a bit too much in too short an amount of time.  The screaming, the fighting, the whining, the gimmies, they all collide in one big ole’ tsunami.   (Alright, enough with the metaphor.) These are the days when I hear my own yucky Mommy voice in my head and I’m yelling and ranting and rapidly becoming that Mean Mommy.  The one who tells them they’re driving her crazy and doles out time-outs like popsicles on a summer day.

The one who can. not. wait. until. Daddy. comes. home.

Because I don’t often lose it.

But, when I lose it?  I really lose it.

“Losing it” this weekend occurred after a long day of what I viewed to be “Little Boys in Paradise” activities.   The beach, dinner out, playgrounds, sidewalk chalk, play dates and birthday parties.  They were back home and, with bottomless adrenaline tanks,  racing and chasing and screaming and throwing things around the living room.  Darting around the fireplace with its “you’re going to crack your head open on that thing” stone riser.   And, when I discovered Little Brother’s beloved “Bah” (a stuffed rabbit) flung between the fireplace and the screen for roughly the 900th time in the last two days, I snapped.

Without thinking, I rushed over to the fireplace, grabbed “Bah” and threw him as hard as I could across the room.

Which, of course, sent Little Brother into a frenzy of tears.

Stop crying!  Enough! Both of you!  Go to your rooms

And, then I may have heard the sound of angels.  Harps playing softly as the living room entryway came aglow.

Husband stepped in.

He doesn’t intervene in the true sense of the word, though.  He doesn’t swoop in and try to mediate.  Probably because he knows we’re beyond that point.  You know, what with me throwing stuffed bunnies and all.   No.   He doesn’t tell me I’m over-reacting (which of course…I am) and he doesn’t tell the kids that ignoring me countless times is ok.   He just…diffuses.   He steps in and gently takes the parenting reigns from my tightly clenched fists.   And I, gratefully, let him.

Not long afterwards, I hear them all reading a story in Little Brother’s room.   Calm.   A giggle here and there.

And they all eventually emerge.  Happy.

And find me sitting peacefully alone in the living room.  Happy.

I’m sorry, Mommy.

IsowwyMahmay.

Me too, guys.

Thanks, Husband.

Thanks for saving, if not the day, at least the moment.  For understanding me.   For caring for them, and for me, so well.   For recognizing that it was Mom, not the kids, in need of a little time out.

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Well, it’s time to face the music.  It’s happening.  We’re getting one.

38 years of raging against the idea of a minivan.  38 years of telling myself I’ll never be “that woman”.  You know the one.  The one with more children than sense.  The one with raisins in her hair.  The one who thinks her child’s scribbles are works of art.  The one who’s always shushing her children in restaurants.  The one whose house is slowly filling with cheap McDonald’s toys.  The one who drives (gulp) a minivan.

Excuse #1.  Goodbye Old Friend. We’ve been driving a Jeep Grand Cherokee for seven years.  It’s been a great car for us but it has 106,000 miles on it and the back speakers are shot (Backyardigans theme song must therefore be played at volume 10 from the front to reach the children.  Husband loves this.)  The air conditioning is a little odd smelling and the heating on the feet is mediocre at best.  I frequently drive other people’s children to various activities and, as there’s no room for a third car seat, I have to strap Big Brother in the center with a lap belt.  Probably not the safest.   We have a typically Marblehead sized one-car garage and in order to get in and out of the Jeep  you have to shimmy around the open doors.   Sliding van doors, a third row, working sound systems, extra storage and all such things minivan would just be much more practical.  And, (sigh) I’m apparently all about practical now.

Excuse #2.  My uncle is a Toyota dealer.  My husband got his first Toyota from the dealership about a year ago and the service has been excellent.  My uncle will give me a good price on a good car and I know with 100% certainty that it’s a car he would suggest to his own children.  And, if anything goes wrong (like the gas pedal sticks and I run head on into a stone wall), I know they’ll put a shim on the brake pad for me.   Kidding.   Mostly.

Excuse #3.  My minivan will be black.   For some reason, I am obsessed with the idea that if I’m getting a freakin’ minivan then, lord help me, it will be black.   I seem to think that a black minivan says “I may drive a minivan but it’s a badass color.  Like, the color of my clubbing outfits, yo.”  Versus a red one which just says “Hi, I’m just another Mom with a minivan.”

Excuse #4.   As my friend Missy said to me…Who cares?  No one’s looking at you anymore, anyway. Sigh.

Plus, I think that Husband is really hoping to be as cool as this guy behind the wheel.

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Alright, I admit it. I take my kids go to McDonald’s. They worship at the gates of the Golden Arches, imbibe in a Happy Meal or two and play with the insanely cheap, plastic, light up toys. The nuggets that claim to be chicken and the fries that soak in grease do, in fact, enter the small and sacred temples of my offsprings’ bodies. A trip to Mickey Dees is an event they look forward to and I dare confess to you here that I indulge them in the pleasure roughly once a week. Usually after swim classes at the Y on Fridays.

But, last week, I called an audible on the whole swim class idea for the foreseeable future and we became “Y-Pool Drop-Outs” (a story for another day). And while they didn’t much miss the swim classes, they were pretty bummed that there would be no processed lunch served on plastic trays.
So, on Saturday, as lunchtime rolled around, Big Brother decided we owed him one. And, before we could really think about it, Husband said ok.
Woooooohoooooooo! Lunch out! With Dad! McDonald’s!
Clearly delighted, Big Brother bolted for his coat. Then, our reality set in. We’d just had a half cord of wood delivered and dropped in our driveway leaving just one car accessible until we stacked it all behind the house. And, Bernie had a vet appointment at noon. And the vet is no where near a McDonald’s. And, it just wasn’t going to work.
“Sorry, bud. Lunch at home, I guess.”
So, as I clipped the leash on Bernie and said I’d be back soon, I could see the disappointment in Big Brother’s eyes. Poor kid. It may be mystery meat and HandiWipes to us but to him it was a special opportunity to feel like a big kid with his own special meal, a new toy for dessert and (even better) a seat next to Dad.
I thought about Big Brother when I was at the vet and knew, of course, that he’d be fine. A peanut butter and jelly sandwich, maybe an episode of the Berenstain Bears on Dad’s lap. I knew Husband would turn it around with his usual grace and the special attention that only Dad can give. I knew Husband was good.
But, when I came home and saw the remnants of Big Brother’s lunch, I realized that Husband is more than good. Sometimes, in fact, he’s great.

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‘Twas Christmas Walk weekend and in old Marblehead

There was Santa by boat, there was Gingerbread
The town was a twinkle with white lights galore
Trees on the roof racks and wreaths on each door
But that Saturday night there was more don’t you know
We looked forward to a party Chez Matt and Chez Mo
7:30 the start time but we called the sitter that night
“Can you come a little early, so we can grab a bite?”
At just about 7 we sat down at the bar
The Barnacle, our choice — from the party, not far.
He ordered a vodka with olives, you see
So I stepped up to the plate with an appletini
Then a second, which was clearly my downfall, I fear
I should have known better. Husband ordered a beer.
An old sot named Victor had us chatting, its true
But I wish Vic had told me “Dear, the drunk here is you.”
So then off we went, down the street just a spill
Where I presented my cheese platter, then it all went downhill
“Chardonnay? Oh, yes, please. Oh yes, sure, another?
I know you from t-ball? Isn’t that guy your brother?”
“Have you met my husband? He’s a big Yankees fan.
Do you think that Tiger is a really good man?
What’s your opinion on health care? Oh, what did you say?
I’ll just stir up the pot and then saunter away.”
“Have you seen my husband? He was just here, I think.
Oh well, I can’t find him, wanna go get a drink?”
Well, he found me, thank goodness, not a moment too soon
And brought me directly to the food table room
Where I made an attempt at some crudite
Or some crackers, whatever, I just couldn’t say
But then talking and walking it seemed was a struggle
So I leaned in and listened when Husband said with a snuggle.
“Party’s over, I think. Honey, don’t you agree?
It’s time to head home to two seventy-three.”
I briefly protested but then acquiesced.
“Let’s go,” he said firmly, “You’re a bit of a mess.”
So, please let me say sorry to my host and hostess
For ducking out quickly, no doubt for the best
The party was fabulous, from what I recall
Good food and good friends, the event had it all.
And I am so sorry that I couldn’t attend.
And hope you’ll invite me, when you do it again.

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