I dreamed that my husband was doing something he shouldn’t have been doing with someone he shouldn’t have been doing it with. I was so distraught about it that I ended the preceding sentence with a preposition. Seriously, Morpheus. That’s the best you can do?
I barely spoke to Hot Firefighter Husband for, like, hours, because I was so skeeved out, both by the something and the someone.
“Why couldn’t it have been with Salma Hayek?” he asked.
I’m not a particularly envious person. I trust Husband implicitly. Plus, he has two full-jobs, three kids, and an addiction to election coverage and sports. If he was going to do something like that, I’d actually have to carve out some time on his calendar first.
But when my days blend together in a jumble of fitness classes, peanut butter sandwiches, dog poop, and wiping the ever-present pee puddles out of the kids’ bathroom, I start looking at myself differently. I stop showering after every workout to the gym, because what’s the point? I wear the same comfortable yoga pants every day, because who cares? I don’t get my eyebrows waxed, because who’s looking? Just my sister, who eagerly points out all my flaws. But SCORE! She lives 3,000 miles away.
Inevitably, though, the other person who’s looking is me. Sometimes I see my reflection and wonder whether Husband still sees the beauty I once was. Does he remember my eyes before they were framed by crow’s feet? Will he always love the way I look in purple?
And when did I become so self-conscious about my looks?
The Tyrant, now all of 6, isn’t old enough to be weighed down by such insecurities. She marches off to the bus stop each morning with sleep marks on her face, hair unbrushed, and mis-matched clothes. Sometimes she resembles a Ukrainian refugee. But damn, she looks good, brightening every molecule she encounters with a brilliant smile and breathless anticipation for what the day holds.
Now that I think about it, that’s what Husband found irresistible about me in the first place – my smile, my joy, my irrepressibility.
This morning, he tried to kiss me goodbye as I was writing checks for a bunch of overdue school-related crap, and I brushed him away like he was a mosquito. Later, at the gym, I greeted everyone with exuberance and enthusiasm, and I understood suddenly that I had been giving my best self away to strangers. They were getting my smiles; they were catching my joy.
Poor Hot Firefighter Husband has been stuck with the dregs of me – the tepid, stale remnants of my essence.
So I have made an eyebrow waxing appointment. I’m going to take a shower today, and wear some real clothes. And when I visit Husband at work, I’m going to smile and act happy, and let him kiss me hello and goodbye. I think if I do all that, we’ll both think I look a little beautiful.
And tonight, if strange illicit scenery invades my slumber again, Salma Hayek is going to be involved. That way, frankly, I can enjoy the dream, too. SCORE!