When things get tough, I always joke with Patrick that I'd trade lives with him.
He can clean up the pee and puke and I'll go to Happy Hour. He can dispose of the dead bird in my attic and I'll make out with random guys in bars. He can spend hours helping with homework, violin practice and carting sometimes cranky kids all over the damn town and I'll have hot sex with professional-types in leather harnesses. (Not that I'm saying.)
The truth is that I can sometimes be jealous of his life.
I know it's not all green grass and rosebuds (ha!) on his side of the fence. I was there when he sold everything he owns and moved out of desperation. I was here waiting for word when he had major surgery. Sometimes I'm glad I met him after his days of chemo and live-like-you-were-dying trips to Africa. Sometimes I wish I had met him before because I don't like the idea of him being so alone during that time. But I've learned that I don't do well with his alone-ness.
But still. What I envy are his first kisses. And fresh meetings. And new beginnings. And freedom.
Oh, sweet, sweet freedom.
Basically, he can do what (and who) he wants when he wants. As long as his work schedule and finances allow. There are no babysitters to schedule. No partner to placate. If he feels like going for a run in the park in the rain, he puts on his running shoes and goes.
Of course running in the rain alone isn't much fun.
And first kisses, fresh meetings and sex with new people may be exhilarating, but I don't remember them being very comfortable.
For the first time yesterday, Patrick was the one to joke that he'd trade lives with me.
It's the age-old pull between single people and married people. The grass always seems so much greener on the other side of the fence. But it takes a lot of fertilizer to make things so green. And who really wants to walk in that much shit?
The thing about my husband is that he believes I can do anything. We all deserve mates who believe that we can achieve anything and be anything we set our minds to.
I'll never trade my kids for freedom. I'll never trade my husband for a newer model. But if I run with my husband's faith in me I can make our kisses exhilarating. I can make life more spontaneous and fun. I can fabricate my own brand of freedom.
I can have it all.
Maybe Patrick is the key. You see, he lets me play on his lawn. And my husband lets me out to play safe in the knowledge that I'll be back for supper time.
If I can have it all it is only because these two men give me so much.
Maybe I'm just the fertilizer.