This year I’m married 25 years. After all that time how can you be sure you are still much loved and not just a convenient friend who is always there? Well the other day I put our 25 year marriage to the test.
Let me tell you the story.
Last Tuesday at 6.30 pm I was running late for work. Spinning around, getting nowhere I used the last of my oxygen to hurry my daughter along, while blaming her, unfairly, for our delay. In the midst of my haste, himself arrived home and, always on the ball, he observed, “You’re a bit late this evening”. Ignoring his brilliance, I reached up to give him a very quick and unloving peck, missing his cheek completely, before running out to my car.
‘Feck, we’re mad late’, I announced to my daughter as I reversed at 100 mph out the drive.
Yes, an eardrum bursting bang, brought my racing reverse, to a whiplash inducing halt.
We looked at each other and for a moment I sat there bewildered. Why were we stopped? That moment quickly passed as memories flooded back, Oh no, yer man was home, which meant…his car was in the drive!
I looked in the mirror (remember those early driving instructions to check your rear mirror? Yeah? Well this is why) and there taking up the entire rear view mirror was a car. Not just any car though, this was a Passat, the one much loved by my husband.
I got out hoping that as I’d only travelled a few yards it wouldn’t be too bad? Well all I can say is that car must be made of paper! An enormous dent was visible above the back wheel. (Did I mention it was the side of his car I hit? The drivers side. The side you look at most often?)
With a sinking heart I made my way slowly, to the confessional. Himself was in the kitchen and I noted with alarm that there were no witnesses. The memory of how forgiving (not) he had been when the car had reversed down a hill unoccupied, (due to the fact I’d forgotten to put on the handbrake), came to mind. What would he think of this?
Normally I’m a brave, don’t mess with me, sort of girl but the trauma of my collision must have got to me. I couldn’t stop thinking of how gutted he would be when he heard what I’d done, not to mention what he’d think when he saw the damage. How could I tell him? How could I break it to him?
‘I’ve banged into your car and made mush of it’, I blurted out. (Us Dubs are straight talkers).
It was then it happened. Probably the sweetest moment in the past 30 years of our life together. Himself looked at me a little stunned for a moment. Stepping forward he put out his arms and hugged me tight. Reeling at his unexpected kindness and forgiveness I was a little overcome.
It was then I heard him say those magic words…
‘It’s only a car’.