Wednesday, October 12, 2011

My partner loves me, I guess that makes me human.

Depth of love equals the number of times a partner in life screws up royally and said co-partner merely pulls his or her tool chest out and takes care of the royal mess without so much as a grimace.                                                                                                 

I considered this the other day when I crashed Eric's truck into the garage not once but twice.  Once in the morning while taking Austynn to school and the second time when both boys were in the backseat and I was on the way to pick up Eric at the Park n' Ride.  Actually, "crashed" is a harsh word.  Skidded, sliced, smeared, oh Hell, I don't know.  I took some dry wall off the garage and re-painted the side view mirror with it. 

If you know our garage, it's tight.  If you know the size of the truck, it's huge.  Dammit, there were a heck of a lot of factors which played into that day.  Yes, I back out of the garage like a bat out of Hell.  My bad.  I need to relax and go slower.  But if you had two ADHD kids arguing non-stop about the differences between electro magnetic engines you would want to get them to wherever it is that you're going and get them there FAST too.

Of course it didn't help when my eldest tried to remind me that it isn't my truck, it's Dad's.  That Dad loves the truck more than he loves his family.  That Dad is going to be mad at me.  That Dad is never going to forgive me.  Monday was not a good day for me to begin with and William was not helping at all.  My Aspergian son does not pick up on visual cues so he was completely oblivious to my snarling, quivering upper lip and ticking eyebrow.  He had absolutely no idea that he needed to stop his continued rant about the bit of dry wall on the truck's mirror.  Oh no, that would have been too simple.

For those of you who don't know my son, William, he is obsessed with our Ford F-150 truck.  He feels a certain entitlement to it (as most teenagers of driving age would).  Sorry, son.  It's not yours!  NEWS FLASH:  Your grades suck!  Your Dad and I will not sign off and pay for a Driver's Education Class until you maintain a "C" average with your grades.

I know I sound harsh but if you were in that truck and had to listen to his ongoing lecture about a little drywall paint on the mirror, you would completely understand where I was coming from.  Teenagers are brutal.  I was over him and my emotions got the better of me.  I said the words which every parent dreads to say in a moment of complete and utter frustration.  Do I dare type it?  Will you still love me?  Ok, here I go...

"Fuck you, William!"

I shudder now when I think of it.  Yes, I said it.  The worst catch phrase a parent can say to their child.  Austynn was in the truck too.  I'm so ashamed but I'm human.  I own it.

After those words were uttered all Hell broke loose.  William started screaming every nasty thought he could and tried to hit each button on my panel.  It was too late for that.  He'd already successfully done that months ago.  I'm impervious now; however, I did tell him that the truck is not solely Dad's but that it belonged to both Dad and myself.  That when William "tells Dad on me" (because that was his intention), Dad is not going to care in the slightest.  That Dad does not love things over his family and that Dad will not be angry at me.

It was a long ten minutes to the bus stop; the longest in my life.  When Eric climbed into the truck, William confirmed my expectations and so did my husband.  Eric turned around and told William to be quiet and that they'd discuss it when we got home.  And yes, my dear love told our son that it was just a truck and he didn't care whether I crashed into the garage wall or not.  In fact, while I told Eric the story of how and why I did it, he had that sweet, dear giggle in his voice which told me in so many ways that no one could possibly love or understand me more than my gentle man sitting beside me.  I felt such retribution.  Shame on me.

When the four of us arrived home, Eric took his handy, dandy toolbox out and went to work on resolving the mess I had created.  He sat for an hour listening to William lament over the cruel and hurtful things his Mother had said to him (regardless of the fact that they were true).  He snuggled Austynn and comforted him.  He was the gentle Dad Austynn needed especially when family fights explode in the household.  And finally, Eric came to me and held me quietly on the bed and reminded me that I was a good Mother despite the fact that I used the all time worst curse phrase on my own son.  He laughed out loud when I told him what led up to the event and commiserated with me on how awful my day had been.

By the time my mess had been cleaned up it occurred to me that no one had bothered to ask Eric how his day had been, kissed him hello, or even offered to fix any of his problems.  The depth of his love for this family and particularly me is quite amazing considering this was not the first day I've crashed a car multiple times into our garage.  Perhaps had this been the second time I crashed the truck, it might have been a completely different story...   

  

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