20 August 2011

Bachelorhood Again

So my wife, Lizzie, has been gone for weeks now back in the States, visiting her family (and meeting my mother and brother for the first time). It's been a weird time for me - a sort of pseudo-bachelorhood has taken hold.

I love my wife and miss her, don't get me wrong - I can't wait for her to come back! - but in her absence, I've had to sort out an entirely new routine to my life, and I had anticipated some things about that. I was looking forward to keeping my whatever hours I pleased, leaving my research scattered about in big heaps of space-occupying papers, and buying the good mouthwash with the savings from eating the $3 Hare Krishna lunches. But it's worked out strangely.

I remembered a time when I was living the idyllic free life. I did whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. It was a time of great invention, like when I discovered that I didn't have to clean off the plate to lunch on a baguette but could use a sheet of plain paper to hold the smear of butter and catch the crumbs. And while I have never regretted choosing to share my life with Lizzie, I looked back at that time of bachelorhood as a great phase - in retrospect, it seemed so free.

Now I have that chance to seize that spirit again... but as it turns out, I just want her to come home.

It's weird. Let me elaborate with a metaphor.

It seems kind of like a house. There was a time when I was happy living in a scrubby hut, with ramshackle walls that let the wind in. And it was nice to bang the door as I came in carelessly, flop into a hammock, and play the ukulele all night while a trained monkey brought me grapefruit juice (it's my metaphor, so I can make it how I want). There's a time when that's what you want - a little hut and some grapefruit juice from your monkey.

But then I met Lizzie, and we started building a life together. And we pulled down my ramshackle walls of nonsense and put up solid planks. And we put up nice curtains that she'd made and a sturdy roof that kept out the rain and wind. And we got a big bed for the two of us. It's different, sure, and maybe I might occasionally miss monkey-juice. But my house - my life - is also bigger and better. And the idea of tearing down those new sturdy walls makes me sad, and at night I no longer want a carefree hammock. I just want my wife.

I do so love that woman.

1 comment:

  1. I had Stephen read this post. This is how I presented it to him, "Read this. Alex wrote it. It's about his wife. He is so happy, and I am just as happy for him. You'll get a glimpse of why he will always be one of my dearest friends. My heart glows brighter, reading this and knowing." :)