Believe it or not, I do not like to write about my wife very often. It’s not that I don’t love her or think the world of her. I certainly understand more than most husbands the imbalance between myself and her. My dad didn’t dispense marriage advice to me often. He just lived the life of a dutiful husband. He placed my mom on a pedestal, adoring his “child bride” for the 60 years of their life together. The way he treated her – loving, honoring, and truly cherishing her – was more than enough for us to see what being a husband and father meant. But he was fond of saying, whenever the subject came up, that “all women marry beneath themselves. They marry men.” And it’s certainly not that he thought ill of his sons, simply that he recognized the inherent beauty, dignity, and grace of woman. Let’s face it. Men are brutish, boorish, and hairy until a woman graces us with her presence. Even then, we’re still pretty hairy. But it is in the instant that a young man discovers a woman who’s taken an interest in his potential that he radically alters his life to become the “man” God always wanted him to be – a strong, providential, gentle, patient, and loving man capable of raising a family.
No, I don’t write often about my beloved for the same reason that I never mention students by name and I use my own photos rather than images grabbed from the internet. The people and places involved in the re-telling of my life never asked to be the subject of a blog! While it is true that I can talk about my life all I want, I am always mindful of crossing the line and exposing someone who might enjoy some of the privacy the entire human race enjoyed before the online world took over our lives.
That being said, I have to relay something the wonderful Mrs. Harvey did for me today. A month and a half ago I resigned from my job as a school administrator. I had worked so hard and long for this opportunity. But when the moment came, not too long into this job, and I realized it wasn’t working out, I decided it was time to move on. The past few weeks leading up to my last day have been strange for me. I’ve had very little to do but show up. When I wasn’t at work I was starting to get depressed. You see, I’ve never been in this position of having no prospect or idea of where I’m going to wind up. I’ve been reflecting on lack of marketable skills other than teaching which I think is impressive but most people think of as a joke. In fact, I think I want to go back to teaching but it’s mid-year and there aren’t too many teaching jobs available. I’ve struggled with self-doubt, lack of confidence, and a feeling that I had failed – not just myself which would be tolerable enough but also the woman I vowed to give my life to and the children she’s given me. And through it all she’s been so gracious to me, encouraging me, helping me to see the situation for what it is, and doing it all without losing her mind.
So today I finished up at work and drove home. When I walked in the door my wife and kids were out running errands. As I opened the door from the garage I noticed a large gift basket on the counter in the kitchen. This basket was filled with, well to put it gently, booze. Knowing my wife’s tendency to purchase such baskets at gala auctions I almost walked right past it. But then I stopped and read the card. It read something to the effect of “I’m so excited to start this next chapter of our life together and I love you. Now drink up. You’re on vacation!”
I’d like to think that I could ever be as amazing as she is but I know that’s not likely. I will spend the rest of my life searching for a way to make her as happy as she makes me. In the meantime, I’d better do as the lady says…