I always joke with my friend Kari about how I blog sappy things about my husband as they happen because the thoughtfulness shines thru in spotty patches in the dark forest of wedded woes.
This is, of course (hellloooo, its ME!), an exaggeration... but in all honesty, lets face it. In the daily bustle between hitting the snooze button one too many times and finally collapsing half dead between the 'crap when was the last time I washed these and why am I sleeping on graham cracker crumbs?' sheets, some days, the... less than desirable... qualities in a spouse have their way of standing out like a sore thumb.
So I am acknowledging now the fact that Tyson has had this way of showing up unexpectedly since the day I met him. Like he swoops in at the moment I've had too much to handle just when hope is lost and I least expect it. I particularly remember one hot summer softball tournament, almost a decade ago... somewhere in the bloody heat and misery surrounding the Fresno hills. I had only known Tyson long enough to know I had it bad for him, and that he probably had some sort of affection for me since he had cared enough to ask me to prom...
I had gone out on a limb and mentioned this 'away' game to him, hinting that if he was up for wasting money to drive to the middle of nowhere and melt into a puddle while the moments were sucked out of his life in the hot summer sun, it would be great to have an adoring fan. He made no promises, and I caravaned over bright and early with my team in our parent's mini vans. I couldn't stop thinking about him, and feeling silly for thinking he would go out of his way for such a ridiculous waste of time.
By mid morning after we had finished our first game, we had just finished our second warm up rounds when I remember as if it were 5 minutes ago hearing a sound that made my stomach hit the ground for years to follow. I anxiously scanned the spectators and the parking lot, feeling ridiculous for thinking I could actually distinguish the rasp of the engine in that little red sports car.... then suddenly... I stopped breathing. There he was, in all his quirky teenage glory, pink bandanna wrapped loud and proud around his beautiful shiny bald head.
He just... showed up. Not even knowing where the tournament was, other than the town it was in that he had never been to before. He just went out of his way to make me feel appreciated and important, and cared for.
Now that our lives are increasingly more busy with the family static that we live among day in and day out, it would seem there are fewer opportunities to heroically swoop in out of the darkness from nowhere to save the day from unforeseen calamity and mortal peril. Perhaps as complicated as 'grown up' can feel sometimes, there is an over all absence of the dramatic pull of each and every life altering scenario there once was in our glory days. Sometimes (well, a lot of times) I miss those days. Until he reminds me. Like yesterday.
I was standing in the kitchen, utterly exhausted and mentally drained from solving one too many toddler crime cases, hustling to make something to bring to our next event, trying not to listen to the voices in my head screaming all the items on my to-do list at a pitch so high it could only be heard by the dog, who was barking his face off outside threatening to blow the house down if I didn't drop everything and fill his dinner dish before I even so much as dared to go to the bathroom.
Enter: Tyson from work. He asks about my day, I tell him to look around. He heads off to change his clothes or put out a fire somewhere, and returns a moment later. He eyes a DVD case sitting on the counter that I had told him about earlier in the day. A couple weeks ago, I had offered to return it for a friend and it had somehow fallen out of sight until she called earlier in the day to inquire about the $25 in late fees. Oopsey.
He picks up the DVD, and offers to run it down and return it before 7pm, when another late fee would accrue. I gladly accepted the generous offer, which I hadn't fit anywhere into my evening agenda. Before I could blink, he followed with "want me to take the kids with me?"
"Um.... is that really a question?"
He turned to gather the heard, and then I heard Anabelle pattering across the kitchen floor. She pulled on my leg... "Momma... you need anything else from store?"
They were his words, I knew it the moment she said them. Tyson and I talk every day on his lunch break, and he always closes with "alright... see you soon... do you need anything from San Luis?"
I didn't need anything else from the store. And I think generally I don't need anything else, period. It was a small way of showing up to salvage my day, but it meant a lot. First that he could come home after a long day and put my unfinished to do list at the top of his priorities, second for rescuing his maiden from the terrors and furies of the toddler dragons for a quiet moment to stuff my deviled eggs and watch the Tim Russert tribute on the evening news in peace, and lastly... for taming the beasts and imparting a small touch of his assertive kindness in life lesson to his daughter.
Thanks for showing up for me, Ty. I love ya.