Monday, August 23, 2010

Mi Viejo

Just about every day I hear from someone how lucky I am to be married to Dennis and what an amazing guy he is and frankly, I'm getting a little tired of it. It's not so fun always living in someone else's shadow. I've been reading a biography about George and Martha Washington. I think Dennis shares many of George Washington's attributes, especially the sweet way he treated his wife. Something Patsy (Martha) said hit home to me. She said, "Being around you casts a tall shadow. But it's one I'll happily stand in." She referred to his shadow both metaphorically and literally since he was over 6 feet 3 inches tall and always evoked a spectacle of devotion and support from his followers everywhere he went. She also referred to him as, "My dear old man," or as they say in Latin America, "Mi viejo."

Sometimes I'll say to him, "Geez, why doesn't anyone ever tell you how lucky you are to be me married to me?" And then being the smart man that he is, doesn't answer.

Here are a few of the things my sweetheart does that make him so amazing.

He makes the bed every day he doesn't go to work, even when we're staying at a hotel.

Everytime I come home from jogging or being at the gym, he always sets out a tall glass of icewater for me on the counter, just to be sweet.

He does most of the canning and gardening for our family.

When we were first married I couldn't figure out how to sew couch covers for our thrift store couch and was about to let out a stream of expletives when he calmly took them from me, disappeared into the sewing room for a few hours and came out with beautifully made couch covers- pleats, darts and all. That only worsened the urge for expletives.

He makes awesome homemade bread and I can't even compete with his pie crusts and pizza dough, so I don't.

When we first moved into our house we (or I should say he) painted our living room yellow. After two days I told him for some reason the color made me nauseous (yes, a little dramatic, but I was just pregnant with Luke). So calmly and without complaint, he took all the pictures down again, retaped and repainted our living room to the shade of yellow that no longer made me nauseous. I'm embarassed to admit that one because it makes me sound like such a diva.

When I told him I needed a change from the windy, brownish, windy, grayish, windy winter in Idaho last year, he said, "How about we go see your parents in Indonesia?" He has a knack for knowing what will lift my spirits when I'm feeling down.

To date there has not been a single- not one problem he has not been able to figure out, be it from packing into three suitcases the hundreds of souvenirs we bought in Mexico- to building our amazing playset without blueprints, just the picture in his head. This man is Macgyver and Mary Poppins rolled into one- but better.

He is incredibly gifted athletically and excels at any sport he tries. The man reminds me of spiderman and the hulk. He is easily the most physically powerful and agile man I know.

He listens to me ramble, and then listens some more... and then some more.

When I ask him to vacuum, he moves the couches and gets behind them.

He is constantly volunteering to take the kids for the evening while I go to the gym, go out with a friend, or take some time off.

I truly believe this man is capable of anything he wants to do. Really. Anything.

So I'm left asking myself , "What do I contribute to this relationship?" Yep, that's a hard one to answer being married to this guy. I would be happy if my boys grow up to be even half the man their father is.


Percy said...

You don't have to post this one if you don't want to. I dare you to, but you don't have to. You my beautiful sister, are stunning & gorgeous. Every person that lays eyes on you comments on your perfection. Like my roommates who all won't forget you & cousins at wedding receptions. I challenge you to HEAR the blessings your loved ones gift you with. To RECEIVE their love with open heart. Inside. This is a hard thing to do for one who has grown up in a culture where self-depreciation is more socially accepted than acknowledging one's brilliance. AND being as kind to YOURSELF, as you are to everyone else, is perhaps one of the most significant acts of benevolence. You are beautiful & Dennis is a fortunate man to walk by your side. I have heard him say this. Attractiveness is partly inherited. And part of it is really hard work!, as you know. Having a nice body is the result of proper eating, an entire lifestyle of preparing and planning, hours of exercise (hopefully done in the spirit of fun too), nourishing the soul in the body, educating oneself on options, creativity in meeting goals, years of perseverance, dressing optimally, taking daily time to arrange oneself in a pleasing way. People might say, "oh I wish I had your good looks" but often aren't willing to put in their effort to radiate. Your life accomplishments & traits reflect part of who you are. You grew up in multiple countries & cultures learning to navigate & adapt. You are the offspring of a veterinary doctor & a registered nurse, both bilingual & accomplished in their own right. You've continued some of their interests in writing, world cultures, deep appreciation for the worth of every human being, faithfulness to a religion that asks alot, physical activity, diplomacy, event planning, leadership with people & groups, getting large numbers of individuals to follow your lead on various endeavors, a heart to help suffering with action, delight in culinary activity, agricultural labor, not being proud about working with your own hands, humility, eyes quick to flow with tears (I love this one & think it sound in many ways), an appetite for reading, a spotless home, a continuing desire to connect with family and be together. Additionally you've cultivated more: proven financial soundness in adhering to a strict budget of your own making, a determination to live within your means, asset wisdom in savings, retirement & debt reduction, have darling disciplined children who say thank you, refer to your siblings with the endearing title "uncle" or "aunt", & show high facility from home vocabulary mentoring, your physical prowess demonstrated in marathons and triathlons, a love of youth & scouting & the outdoors, a unique classiness in your home & personal decor, an eye for colors & creating beautiful spaces, an ability to foster & maintain close friendships with local friends, your college degree, professional competence, wage-earning ability, an openness in difficult situations, an honest introspection, a fierce competitiveness. You also cast a tall shadow. The world has a powerful person in you. When I look in the mirror I sometimes see it in myself, sometimes I don't... at times I must remind myself to see what is in front of me. Your spouse did not marry a trophy wife, gorgeous as she is, he married an impressive equal. One capable & strong. In some areas you are more capable, & you have gone first. In others areas he. What aim does keeping score & comparing serve? Fortunately life in general is not a race, & getting there first, though sometimes fun, is not the most important. It takes a subtle yet profound sense of self to be married to another spectacular person. For both. To sit appreciatively while your loved one is praised, thankful. And then to sit still and take it in when it comes your way.

gilvearbebes said...

Ahh, he sounds sweet. But I love you and know you are a wonderful contributor to your relationship as well! Because you are AWESOME!

Cher said...

aww, cute! love the vacuum one and the ice water.