My phone rings. I know it’s my wife based on the ringtone I selected for her. I pick up.
Sue: “You okay?”
Me: “Relatively speaking, I suppose.”
Sue: “I’m concerned because you haven’t posted to the website in a few days.”
I say something that I hope appeases her and get off the call. Actually, no, I’m not okay. I’m far from okay. I’m the opposite of okay. I’m the anti-okay. But that’s a story for another day. Any future day would work for this, actually.
Our short call made me think. I came to an awful realization. She tunes into how I’m feeling just like others do. By reading what I say online. Really, it’s the only way she could know since our communication is essentially controlled by what needs done next. We have no choice. It always anticipating our next crises. Did we get the medicines? What was Ryan’s oxygen saturation today? Was he cold? How do his lungs sound? What were the results of the day’s urine test? Color and odor? Did he have a bowel movement? Did he do anything new? Did Kari call? Do you know how she’s doing in her classes? Well, you get the idea…
Ah, yes, it is a marriage caught up in the debris field of the situation. We each hunker down in our marital foxholes, heads down, and will come out when the shelling (hopefully) stops. We each take turns on patrol, combing the horizon for impending danger. Meanwhile, the other continually fortifies the trench… well, at least keeps it from caving in. There’s no R&R when the battle rages on all sides.
Then another realization. How do I tune into how she’s feeling? The truth was lobbed into my foxhole like a live stun-grenade. I don’t. I have completely abandoned it somewhere along the line. Very early on, as best I can recollect. Sadly, I rely entirely on her to tell me.
I just hope she does.