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Humor June 2016

Agelessly Yours

Hopeless, Helpless and Happy

By Karen White-Walker

I actually enjoy those who are a little on the crusty, crude, and cantankerous side. Yes, their abrasiveness can wear you down like a pumice stone rubbing against a sunburn, but then when these irascible characters unexpectedly do something sweet and sentimental, it seems to deliver three times the punch.

Here’s how stupid and naïve I was – and only ten months ago, no less, when, at my advancing age, I should have shown maturity and emotional stability. My husband was beginning to show signs of confusion in doing the simplest of tasks: this once meticulous man was not showering, and he was also having trouble walking, and what did I say? “Honey, I think the best years are yet to come.”

What dope says such a ludicrous thing? A woman who refuses to see and admit that her dear husband is quickly failing. It seemed that our years together were whizzing by so quickly and we were still working on getting the kinks out of our relationship.

We can all dream, can’t we?

Oh, why did I once read that how a married couple starts out (in reference to the probability of being incompatible) is usually the way they end up? It all seemed hopeless and reminded me of the time my children’s no-nonsense pediatrician, many years ago, told me that by the time a child is five years old, “the die is cast.” I practically collapsed to the floor after hearing that bunch of bunk.

“You mean my job is over and their psyches are already set?”

“Pretty much,” and his nonchalance and indifference made me want to grab his stethoscope and hang him or myself with it.

It can’t be over! I thought to myself, for I’m just now getting the hang of how to become an absolutely remarkable mother – and humble, too. Never mind that this “doctor of doom” who considered himself a professional, thought otherwise. How do I know this? Well, he just MIGHT have said that I was the only mother who ever made him stutter. Forget “might have,” he definitely said it, and why I continued to take my four children to him until they were 18 is as questionable as why I stayed with a husband who was as challenging and not always complimentary.

But you see, I know the answer — no psychiatrist need apply. I actually enjoy those who are a little on the crusty, crude, and cantankerous side. Yes, their abrasiveness can wear you down like a pumice stone rubbing against a sunburn, but then when these irascible characters unexpectedly do something sweet and sentimental, it seems to deliver three times the punch. I ask you, am I that needy for a natural high? Aren’t we all? And it’s thrilling to get your kicks out of people, no pills or booze to anesthetize the hurt or tears that they can sometimes cause you. Just have them bring on their idiosyncrasies and deal with them straight and sober. After all, they have to deal with OUR little oddities. Can’t think of any? I know the feeling.

How dare that skunk of a doctor say I was the only mother who made him stutter. However, my husband once threatened to smash up the car (with me in it) if I constantly continued to burst out into song with “People, people who need people, are the luckiest people in the world,” knowing that most people weren’t always his favorite. As long as I was his favorite, I felt loved and secure and happy.

Imagine getting a natural high from those you surround yourself with. But that was yesterday and because the circle of life must go on, all my tomorrows are missing more and more of those vibrant personalities who nurtured my soul.

“Just keep going!” sings my heart, and in my head I can almost hear my husband say, “Better that your heart sings and not that mouth of yours that can’t carry a tune in a wheelbarrow.”

I ask you. How could you not love the guy? I sure did.

 

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