That would be me. Idiot person. In the flesh.
Now I know that all the self-help pundits insist that we love ourselves unconditionally. Loudly. Daily. We’re not allowed to self-deprecate. There can be no doubt at our own personal marvelousness. We must look in the mirror on a regular basis and remind ourselves how frigging awesome we are. We must take overt pride in our unique fabulosity. Self-love is not vainglorious big-headedness. It is a necessary part self-discovery, self-appreciation and self-acceptance.
Well okay, I get that and usually I think I’m all that and a bag of chips. I have no clue what that means but what I mean is I do spend a lot of time pondering my belly button and have therefore circled the block many times on my own personal road to self-whatever. I’m as swell as I need to be.
Except for today. Today I am an idiot. Big and fat.
Allow me to share why.
A couple of weekends ago my sweetheart and I were invited to quite a lavish soiree. So I did myself up as best as these old bones will allow. New dress, hot pink heels, fluffy hair, a whole bunch of bling and I’ll tell you I was made up to the nines. Totally ready to BRING IT.
My only concern was the new dress. A little one shoulder number but black and somewhat drapey and I was wondering if said frock required a bra. So I said to my sweetheart whilst curling my hair “YOU my darling will have to be the judge.”
“Not a problem,” responds he, ever the pragmatist. My guy is very much task-oriented and I’m sure he was confident in his abilities to assess my naked boobs under wraps.
I sent him downstairs to await my entrance (if I’m going to the effort to get glammed up I can assure you there will be an entrance!) and put myself together diligently. I was ready.
Down the steps I strutted, pink shoes clicking, pink purse in hand, around the corner, into the kitchen (where he was sitting on a bar stool) and ta-da … there I was in all my glory!
He looked up. Gave me the once over. And then in a confident voice that could only belong to a scientist familiar with absolute discovery stated “No. You’re good. You don’t need a bra.”
I stared back. Incredulity flooding my countenance. “Is that it?” I beseeched. “Is that all you have to say?”
Now he was totally flummoxed. “That’s what you wanted to know, isn’t it? About the necessity or lack thereof of a bra for this ensemble?” He truly was baffled.
“Well yes,” I retorted with more than just a hint of annoyance colouring my tone “but I was also kinda hoping for a Wow you look smashing! Or Damn honey you are beautiful!”
I’m sure you get the picture. And I won’t sugarcoat it cause I was a little (lot) pissed. But off to the party we went.
When we arrived at out hosts’ home our hostess (no stranger herself to glamming it up good) took one look and said “Wow! Well just look at you!”
“See!” I squawked at my beloved. “Other people say stuff! Why can’t you?”
He just raised his eyebrows and downed a few more gulps of beer.
Later in the evening I was standing at the bar awaiting a glass of Pinot Grigio when I glanced at the man next to me. He sure looked familiar. “Rob!” I whooped upon recognition. “How are you?”
Rob just glared at me blankly.
“It’s Vickie,” I cajoled, smiling. How could I be angry? It had been at least ten years since our paths last crossed.
“Vickie?” he bellowed, eyes wide like dinner plates. “Holy crap, you look good!”
Harrumph. And so there, boyfriend. So fucking there.
The next day a few photos showed up on Facebook (how did that happen?) and the compliments flowed freely. I was delighted and once again felt vindicated. Geez Louise if my Facebook friends can tell me I look good why can’t my significant other? Why is he so stingy with his damn words, especially knowing as he does that WORDS are my love language (there’s a blog about that about two years back). I love words. Need words. Crave words. Words are my jam.
Don’t be mistaken here, my guy can talk. He has no trouble with lots of words. It’s just those sweet nothings that are a little lacking. Unfortunately they are just not his jam.
Days go by and then a week and I realize I am still messed up by this lingual pickle. I am desperate for my words and feeling much like a dog denied his rightful bone.
So I ask my mother. You see, back in my very early years my parents went out a lot (we had awesome babysitters). My father had founded a university department and there were countless dinners, cocktail parties, receptions and even balls to be attended. My mother had a glorious closet filled with silky, satiny frocks. So I ask her “Back in those days, when you got all gussied up, did Daddy tell you that you were beautiful? That you looked great? Anything like that?”
And without skipping a beat she replies “No. I don’t think so.”
“Didn’t that bother you,” I challenge.
“No, not at all,” she responds calmly. “I don’t think I ever really gave it much thought. Because your father did so many other incredibly wonderful things for me, and sweet things, and surprising things, I didn’t worry about being flattered. In comparison being flattered was pretty inconsequential.”
And just like that your feckless winesoaked blogger is BUSTED.
Because the truth is MY guy also does a million incredibly wonderful things for me, and sweet things, and surprising things and probably most important – daily things.
Like he walks the dog (used to be mine, now he’s ours) every night before bedtime. This is a luxury Shiloh never enjoyed when it was just the two of us. He got his big exercise in the morning and in the evening, well, his constitutional was attended to in the back yard. Speaking of which, that same back yard (not literally but you get my drift) is also now attended to by my man. He digs pits, he fills them, he repeats and repeats. And never complains. Oh and Shiloh gets extra walks or Frisbee time or even a dip in the river on weekend afternoons simply because my beau likes taking him. Allowing me (ungrateful shrew) to read and nap to my heart’s content.
He also does wine runs whenever required. You can only imagine …
He washes my car. He fills it with gas if I’m running late. He is almost always the designated driver. When I do gigs he lugs all the gear out of the basement, up the stairs, loads the car, unloads at the venue and sets it all up. With nary a complaint. And then when I’m done he tears it all down, packs it up and drives me home.
And here’s the best one: every night before bed he asks me what I need. Thumping? Don’t get too excited here, it’s a massage machine for my always problematic back and shoulders. Or maybe a real massage? Or a foot rub? He is willing to do this every single night. Yeah, that’s what I said – every single night. And he never asks for anything in return.
And now I can hear you muttering Holy crap is she ever an idiot.
Yep. That’s me. Feeling all sorry for myself cause he didn’t tell me I was bootiful.
Don’t ya just love life epiphanies?
And more importantly don’t ya just love when your mommy is super smart?
Yep. Me too.
Please don’t worry. I’ve gotten over myself. Thank God.
And the next time I play dress-up I’ll leave the words to the madding crowd. I will accept the ones that come my way with gratitude and (I hope) grace. And I’ll enjoy the company of my sometimes silent partner with equanimity.
Because now I know better (thanks, mama).
Besides, when I get home I’m getting thumped. 🙂