working on messy love

Years and years ago, back when The Big Top was scarcely beginning, a friend of mine gossiped confided about what another dear friend had shared about her marriage…that it was work…WORK, she snorted. Love and marriage is not work, at least it should not be…in her humble opinion. Years and years later, the three of us all are still married to the same darling husbands and having been married to the same darling husbands for 33+ years, I would imagine that we all can agree together that there is some work…maybe a lot of work involved in more than 33 years of marriage.

I thought about that a lot a couple of years ago when a certain actor/director/producer accepted a Best Picture Academy Award and acknowledged that his marriage to another actor was the best kind of work, which then cued up all the talk that their marriage was DOOMED! Doomed, I tell you, because he thinks love and marriage is work. Of course two years later it seems that all that talk was correct as the marriage of this Hollywood power couple seems to be over.

Go figure!

Yet, based on my own personal experience, I still sit on the Love and Marriage is Work Team because it is. It’s sometimes easy-peasy, lemon squeeze-y and it is sometimes blood, sweat and tears work because it can be frustrating, exhausting, scary and thrilling all at the same time. Better or worse, it’s messy.

And I was totally going to talk all about that messiness that marriage is when shit happened, as it often does, which made me realize that marital love isn’t the only kind of messy love in my life. Friends…family…so many different individuals that stir up the dust and debris all around us and making a general mess of everything in our lives and relationships….a big, fat mess…a mess that SOMEONE will have to clean up…a mess that is part of our love for each other.

UGH!

I hate messes and chaos and dust and debris and, especially, cleaning up messes and chaos and dust and debris. Always have. Always will. But I do love love and I love those in my life whom I hold dear…my friends, my family, my darling husband. I love them all in spite of all the messiness that is loving them. I hope that they feel the same.

It’s work sometimes, all the messy love in my life.

Worth it though.

Thank goodness I can celebrate that…today and every day.

not together, celebrating

Right after dropping Daniel off at school, I received a phone call from this beauty.

Happy anniversary, Mommy!

Awe! She remembered! Then again, how could she not since she crashed our anniversary party nineteen years ago today. Of course I wished her a very happy birthday because she remains my baby, my love, my heart, my joy…something that I have called her since the day that she was born.

So we are celebrating.

Celebrating that 32 years ago when this guy said let’s get married, I said okay. Even more so, given our misadventures that happened this past February, we are celebrating the fact that we get to celebrate 32 years together. Oh, and we get to celebrate the fact that time does not stand still as our darling daughter #4, Jodie Grace Wynonna, is now 19 years old!

Just not together today…for the first time…ever.

Weird.

I guess she is preparing me for when she moves to Arizona.

a dining oasis

Married now for decades…decades…that sounds like a really long time, doesn’t it? Well, yes, 31 years and more is a long time to love and be loved and be stuck together like the old married folk that Bill and I are.

So what about Valentine’s Day?

Valentine’s Day?

Really?

Truthfully, as an old married lady, I haven’t thought too much about it as Love Day was approaching. But my darling husband, on the other hand, was thinking about it a lot. Again, just when I think I know him and can predict almost anything about him he goes and does something like this.

I hate when he does that.

I love when he does that.

He does too because, yes, he loves catching me off guard.

So let’s get dressed up and go somewhere really nice for a Valentine’s dinner?

Around here?

Well, there is an oasis?

An oasis?

Yes, an oasis in the dining desert that is Manteca. It says so right here in Yelp.

So it does. Well, okay then. It’s a date.

And we waited this week for date night to finally arrive.

Ah, the romance of anticipation!

And…

Yes.

Yes.

Yes.

Yes, indeed Ernie’s Fine Foods & Spirits truly is an oasis in the desert that is Manteca’s dining offerings of endless fast food restaurants, taquerias and chain restaurants.

The appetizers, the 5 onions soup, the grilled to perfection steaks, the lobster, the spirits, the wine, the service, the ambiance all perfection.

But Bill impeccably dressed in his grey suit and me in a jersey column dress were definitely overdressed because this is Manteca.

Still, good food, good drink, great uninterrupted conversation…this was good. This was very good. My darling husband definitely hit this one out of the park.

We shall be back, Ernie’s!

all the curves, the edges, all the perfect imperfections

Mr. and Mrs. today for 11,323 days…271,752 hours, 16,305,120 minutes, 978,307,120 minutes.

Don’t worry. I checked my math because yes, my math skills

That’s a pretty long time to be together and yes, through so many curves, way too many edges and a few perfect imperfections. But we were together. Here’s to more and more adventures together always with awesome hair.

Happy 31st anniversary, dear, darling husband of mine. The fact that you want to take me out for sushi tonight tells me that you love me so…still.

And I you too.

All of me.

All of you.

from the heart

Valentine’s Day has come and gone. Love it or loathe it, it remains a part of the month of February and here under the Big Top we kind of like it because…

you give a little and receive a lot. At least that is Daniel’s perspective of this love day.

As for us, Bill and me, we decided to stay home, enjoy a special dinner, a nice bottle of wine and perhaps a movie.

Then I fell ill with what most definitely was a Man Cold…a Man Cold to end all Man Colds because as soon as my darling husband came home from work Thursday evening I took to my sick bed and there I stayed until Sunday morning. What can I say, fever, body aches, sore throat, headache and that just-hit-by-a-MackTruck feeling might drive anyone to their sick bed especially when your darling husband is home for a four day weekend and you know that he does indeed “got this“. And so I did take to my sick bed…

…with Zelda by my side. Nursing me back to health as she curled up next to me and slept for literally hours; so my darling husband assured me. Such a good little kitty she is to sacrifice as she did.

Valentine’s Day brought beautiful tulips and Christina’s Cupcakes and a delicious dinner (that I scarcely could enjoy with my burning, aching throat) plus much pampering by my darling husband but the best gift had to be this.

I know he didn’t want to get this. He made it clear that he did not want to when I asked him but, for me, because I asked and because the flu pandemic here in this Valley has been bad…healthy people are dying and the flu season  has a few more months to go even if experts think the worst is overthe same experts didn’t expect it to be this bad in the first place. Still, Happy Valentine’s Day to me, my darling husband went and got himself a flu shot…and a savings coupon from Safeway too.

The tulips I adore…as I do every year.

The tri-tip dinner he prepared I know was delicious even if I couldn’t enjoy it .

The pampering all weekend was so appreciated.

The flu shot…well, knowing that he really didn’t want to do this but to do it anyway…to do it completelyfor me…to me that was the best gift. A gift straight from his heart because yes, we often do things that we really don’t want to do for those we love the most.

I am so lucky…so damn lucky. This weekend I truly appreciate that.