You're walkin' along the street or you're at a party
Or else you're alone and then you suddenly dig
You're looking in someone's eyes, you suddenly realize
That this could be the start of something big
~ from "This Could Be The Start of Something Big"
This morning my eyes opened before his. I let them rest on the side of his cocoa brown skin peeking out from under the down comforter. His breathing was audible but peaceful. I reached out and stroked his face with one hand and slowly his lids began to flutter. When he looked at me he smiled. Even though his mouth was buried beneath the covers, I knew he was smiling because I could see it in his eyes.
I guess that image serves as the perfect metaphor for our love. From his side, it is understated yet unmistakable. Like smiling eyes, his gestures speak tender volumes and somehow feel more genuine. His love for me is never a mystery. Like, I believe that he'd risk his life for me--truly--without even flinching.
The day was primarily uneventful. He slept in which was what he wanted. The night before had been rather fancy for us; a black tie event with friends. Mom kept the kids overnight (thanks, Mom!) and the B.H.E. and I fixed up quite nicely. And that man of mine hangs a suit like no other, so that always puts me in the very best of moods.
Yes, it does.
After returning with the kids, I did the kind of thing that you do for a person like Harry on his birthday. See, the B.H.E. isn't so keen on receiving gifts. He generally gets what he wants for himself and gets far more joy out of giving than opening his own boxes. Lord knows that makes us a perfect union.
But seriously, he's a man that mostly appreciates acts of service and words of affirmation. And so. I took his car to get emissions and subsequently did his on line tag registration. I put some chicken on in the crock pot (his favorite) so that the entire house would be filled with the cozy scent of slow cooker deliciousness--a thing my husband deeply appreciates. I went and got him exactly what he wanted for lunch which was a falafel sandwich from Falafel King (which happens to have the very best falafel, I think, either of us have ever had.) I also went to Kroger to buy him a Mexican Coca Cola which, if you know Coca Cola, seems to be infused with love in the place of high fructose corn syrup. Yeah, so I did those things because I knew he'd appreciate them all.
I surely did.
Then I told him what a wonderful man he is and how fortunate I feel to be his wife. And I was specific, too. I explained why I think he's amazing and which qualities in him I admire the most. Even though he acts like it's not such a big deal, I've now been with him long enough to know that it is all the the wants. That and a few kind acts of service.
So there wasn't any wrapping paper to toss or receipts to locate for returns. Just me telling him that I love him and demonstrating that I know him well enough to get the best ways to show him.
It's been ten plus years of marriage and with each, I love him more. I'm so, so proud to be his wife and delighted to say again what I've said here many times before:
If this man wasn't my husband, I'd wish that he was. Or were. Or whichever. Ha.
I'll also say the thing that never gets old and always bears repeating. . . .
Before I met Harry, I was not lucky in love. At all. He taught me that all I was really looking for was just one person. So this wasn't about living in Atlanta or hitting the social scene all over Atlanta (although it was responsible for our first meeting.) My point is that if this happened to me, it could happen to anyone. I really believe that. Right before I met Harry, I was exhausted. I'd thrown my hands up and resigned myself to believing that the plan for me was to be single well beyond my child bearing years. But that wasn't the plan.
No, it was not.
Even from the very first day, I knew the moment he put those same smiling eyes on me that this could be the start of something big. And you know what? I've been feeling that way ever since.
Happy birthday, love. You are my testimony. Every day with you is the start of something big.
Now playing on my mental iPod. . . . this song sung exactly like this by young Aretha Franklin. It tells the story of what a difference a day can make and how it is indeed possible to go from "nothing ever works" to "luckiest girl in the world" in the blink of an eye. Le sigh.