"Oh it was the best day of my life!! I never saw Eamon from one end of the day to the other!!"
Now this lovely girl really loved her husband. She meant the above as two separate sentences, one as a statement of how she loved her wedding day, the other, a by the way observation. Not it was the best day because she didn't see her new husband all day.
Yesterday for some reason, something triggered off that memory, maybe because I've been thinking about how busy the Christmas season is, especially for married couples, and especially when there are children, small or big, in the picture. I know it is politically incorrect to say this, but certainly amongst my millions of friends, there are only a handful where the husband does the majority of work in the home. That is not to say that the husbands don't work equally hard elsewhere or are in any way less committed or loving. I'm just saying that's my experience. Anyway, my point is that over Christmas can be very very busy for wives in particular.
When there are guests around and special meals to prepare, houses to adorn and all the other stuff that goes along with Christmas, I know I can slip into the mode of ignoring the two persons in my life who are the two who are best able to actually help me through it all.
In an earlier blog I wrote about not hiding your wishes from your spouse simply as regards gifts. Now I'm saying you shouldn't hide your wishes from him in any area. Today though, I'm just thinking about Christmas.
One year we had a large number of extended family with us for Christmas dinner. Out of some sort of deluded pride, I refused all offers for help from the sitting room, cheerfully calling out how I was managing just fine Thanks!!
Next thing, as I was struggling with the turkey, it flumped out of the oven, sloshing my precious gravy juices all over the floor!
I had no time to clean up the mess so I manhandled the damn turkey back into the oven and threw a bunch of newspapers onto the grease all over the floor.
I was so stressed.
Poor John had the misfortune to appear at that moment offering some help...
...he got it in the neck!!
It has taken me about five or six years to realise that at that moment, instead of turning on my husband who had done nothing wrong, I should have told him I was coping badly, or at least started crying! He was the best person who could have understood and helped and instead I cut the rope that could have saved me.
My point about all this is just this:
Your spouse is not the enemy, he is usually your friend and he may be just delighted to be asked specifically what he can do as believe it or not it is not always obvious to him. It is hard to interpret a cutting comment as a request for a hug.
Even if nothing goes wrong and Christmas is just lovely, in a crowd I have often found that an event can speed by and I may not have spoken a single word to John, just like my friend on her wedding day.
So over Christmas, don't forget your spouse, catch his eye, smile. That may be all it takes in busy or stressful moments to keep that bond special and intimate, even in the crowded room.
Oh, and the OTHER HIM...?
Don't forget Him.