Maybe Dear Abby was right after all…

November 17, 2008

Many years ago, I read a Dear Abby column written by a widow who rued the fact that she ever complained about her dearly departed husband’s snoring. If only, she lamented, she could lie next to him and listen to his snorkelish gasping breaths just one more time…she believed that she never should have despised his snoring.

Tim and I have laughed about that column over the years (no disrespect to the widow intended), because it’s been forever that I’ve poked and shoved him at night, sometimes muttering, “Stop breathing!” as his snorty sounds keep me awake. That’s why it’s funny that my first night home from the hospital, when Tim graciously offered to sleep on the couch so I could have more room to spread in my discomfort, that I implored him, “No, no, please sleep with me. I was so lonely at the hospital. I want you next to me.” And so he was. And yeah, he breathed (oh my, so loud does he breathe) and snorted and sometimes even kind of snore-roared like a lion. But wow, it felt good to be there next to him. It felt good to prod him and roll him over and to simply know that he was there.

Much about a marriage is not terribly bloggable. I don’t have any great desire to share our deepest pain and hurts, to air his side vs. my side. Anyone who has been married, heck anyone who’s ever had a relationship with another human being, knows that the closer we are to one another, the more capacity we have to wound one another. And so we do, Tim and I — we wound each other. Over nearly eighteen years of marriage, we’ve caused each other a whole lot of sadness as well as joy. That’s just being human. And sometimes, in the midst of those harder times, we look at each other and wonder if we have the mettle to move forward together, if we can rebuild what we’ve broken, if it’s all really really worth it.

I realize that it is.

A couple of nights home (and a couple of nights into his snoring!), he got up with me to help me to the bathroom, solicitously finding my slippers and helping me lumber up and down from the bed. As he placed me back down and helped tuck my pillows (so many pillows right now! around me), I looked up at him, touched his sweet face for a moment and said, “It’s only ever been you, you know. I’ve never wanted it to be anybody but you.”

And he smiled down at me. “It’s only ever been you, too. Just you.”

So there. Love is a battlefield that sometimes involves snoring.  But it’s only ever been Tim.  It only ever will be.

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2 Responses to “Maybe Dear Abby was right after all…”

  1. Amy said

    Beth,
    How fun, Julie emailed this to me, I never knew you had this. Let me know if we can do anything for you.
    Amy

  2. Beth said

    Amy,

    So glad you found it — I guess I just never mentioned it! And I am sorry that you visited when I was at my most major WORST! But the flowers were lovely and have been much appreciated. Give Ellie a special thank you kiss from Aunt Beth.

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