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The Confession

Product warning: This is a confession. If you’re strictly into politics, this post will bore you to tears so you may want to skip along to the next post at Blogging Tories or The Huffington Post.

I committed a cardinal sin yesterday. I forgot our wedding anniversary.

I don’t know how or why I could have forgotten it because I think about Maggie pretty much with every breath I take but somehow, the date escaped me.

In my own defense, I’ve been caught up in planning for our trip to Ireland and The Netherlands next week, become a bit obsessive about articles that needed writing for this blog and, of course, taxes. It’s income tax time and I not only had to take care of last year’s taxes but had the pleasure of being reassessed for three other years for which I had to refile as well.

Nothing gets in the way of romance like a tax auditor.

I didn’t offer those as excuses to Maggie; considering the importance of acknowledging our anniversary, they’re pretty lame so I did what only the truly guilty can do – I admitted my guilt and threw myself on the mercy of the court.

I got lucky. The court was merciful.

When I apologized, Maggie smiled, gave me a hug and said that it made up for her forgetting Valentine’s Day for pretty much the same reasons. She had simply become overloaded and the date slipped by unnoticed.

It got me thinking that we very often in our lives get so caught up in the day-to-day trivia that we think is important that we sometimes forget what is truly significant. It also reminded me that nothing is more important to me then Maggie and the life I share with her.

It was a wake-up call that my priorities were slipping out of whack and I needed to reclaim a balanced perspective.

We often do that to our lives. We allow ourselves to become wrapped up in things that we lose sight of other things that are more important. The days tick by, lived as if we had an unlimited supply and opportunities are lost that can never be reclaimed.

We become so focused on the moment; on our own thoughts and feelings that we lose sight of the fact that others have the same feelings and many of the same thoughts. We take for granted that they are a major part of our lives and will simply always be part of our lives until suddenly they’re gone.

Sometimes they leave because they were tired of being forgotten and sometimes they die before we had the chance to tell them we loved them and to say goodbye.

That’s why forgetting our anniversary is so important to me. It was a moment to stop the world around us and tell her that it wasn’t the date I remembered; it was her and that I love her today a little more than I did when I married her.

It was a missed moment and a lost opportunity.

It is particularly galling because I am aware of Maggie all day, every day. She is simply there; part of me no matter where she is or what I’m doing. It’s almost like she is the other half of me or as someone once wrote, “two bodies – one soul.”

I don’t like trivial phrases like ‘soul mate’. Every time I hear someone use that phrase I always wonder if they’re reading a menu and if the fillet of soul mate comes with rice or French fries.

It isn’t that I don’t believe in romance, I do and Maggie tends to bring it out of me. It’s more that I feel that she is worth more than the mundane; she deserves more than just shop worn clichés that drip off the tongue like fortune cookie and bumper sticker slogans.

It’s difficult to explain but because I often refer to her in my posts and tweets I’ll tell you a little bit about her and maybe that will help clarify it a bit.

Maggie was born in Canada not long after her parents immigrated from The Netherlands. Because English and Dutch were cradle languages, she is fluent in both. She studied at McMaster University in Hamilton, majoring in languages and spent a year in France studying French and now speaks three language fluently and smatterings of three or four others.

She is a series of contradictions.

She is complex without being complicated; pretty without the artifice of glamour; holds a wonderful sense of humour but couldn’t tell a joke to save her life; is thoughtful and sometimes thoughtless; highly intelligent and the blondest blonde I have ever known.

She is a woman who can see through the complexities of serious issues with laser-like precision and yet, can sometimes be the epitome of a walking blonde joke.

She is loving, tender and sometimes so sweet that you risk contracting diabetes just standing beside her.

She is well-liked by her friends; loved by both sides of our family and highly regarded and respected by her colleagues.

She never has an unkind word – well, except for that one time she went into Tim Horton’s to get coffee for us. She was gone for almost 25 minutes and I thought maybe they had run out of coffee and were waiting for someone to get back from the store with more. When she finally did emerge I knew there was trouble.

It was Julie Andrews from the Sound of Music who had gone into Tim Horton’s – it was Elsa the She Wolf with a torn ass who emerged, coffees in hand. Maggie doesn’t swear but when she got in the car, she sat for a full minute staring straight ahead without saying anything. There was smoke coming out of her ears and I had to roll down my window. After a minute she turned to me and growled, “Stupid f*cking bimbo”.

I had never heard her growl before and don’t particularly want to again so now I’m extra careful when I make her a coffee.

Except when it comes to her coffee and bad customer service, Maggie is very forgiving as evidenced by the fact that I survived the night with all my parts after forgetting our anniversary yesterday. She is sentimental and can tear up at even the most casual kind gesture or tender moment. She is a strange combination of vulnerability and strength like iron.

If she was a tree, she would be a willow rather than an oak. An oak can withstand much but a strong enough wind will knock it over. A willow may appear weak but even the strongest wind cannot pull it down.

She is a consummate professional and considered an expert in her field but can’t figure out how to program the voice mail on her Blackberry.

She is a loving mother, a proud and committed grandmother who got over her “I’m not ready to be a grandmother” attitude the first time she held our grandson.

She also has a great sense of humour but is absent minded which means that I get to tell her the same jokes over and over again because she never remembers them.

The result is that she thinks I know thousands of jokes even though I only know four.

She lacks artifice. What you see is what you get with her. There is no arrogance in her and if anything, there is sometimes too much humility.

She is romantic, loves to dance and has a great pair of legs. She also bakes the best lemon meringue pie I have ever eaten.

She is my friend, my lover and my wife.  If I forgot that yesterday was our anniversary; I didn’t forget that she changed and enhanced my life because I am always aware of it and of her. No matter what is happening in a given day – it starts and ends with her.

I have travelled some dark roads in my life, sometimes by choice – sometimes by circumstance but through it all, I have always recognized that I have much for which to be thankful and I tend to count my blessings every day.

Whether or not I remembered that yesterday was our anniversary, when I count my blessings – I count Maggie twice.

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© 2013 Maggie’s Bear
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  • http://www.commonplacecrazy.com/ Cynthia Meents

    We sure got lucky finding our spouses. Happy anniversary to you and Maggie. May you enjoy (and remember!) many more.

    • http://abearsrant.com thebear

      Thank you Cynthia – yes we did get lucky and I remember that every day.

  • http://www.facebook.com/sebanders Sebastian Anders

    You are a fortunate, fortunate man to be so blessed. Too few of us are, or at the very least realize we are. Happy Easter. May the Easter Rabbit bring the both of you lots of top quality chocolate eggs, and the blessings of God himself.

    • MaggiesBear

      I am very blessed..Happy Easter to you too.

  • http://www.facebook.com/nicola.timmerman.1 Nicola Timmerman

    A very nice anniversary present your tribute. You could be hit by a truck tomorrow and there it is in black and white that she can keep.

    We often forget our wedding anniversary because if is on the 27th of December. Too much Christmas.

    • MaggiesBear

      I appreciate the thought. . . except for that hit by the truck thing, of course.

    • Sandy Retired

      Nicola, I hear you. Our anniversary is on “Boxing Day” the 26th!! Coming up to #43 in 2013.

      • Sandy Retired

        Nicola — This sign in is weird. Anyway, Sandy Retired is Sandy from Crux of the Matter.

  • Cheryl R

    I would have forgiven you. My husband (been married to him for 28 yrs) rarely remembers “special occasions” but will show up with a little gift or something for absolutely no reason at all. It’s not about a “date”. It’s about all the things you said about Maggie and what she means to you and letting her know when the moment moves you. Not when the date on the calendar dictates it. Wonderful post, Bear.

    • MaggiesBear

      I’m usually pretty good about this stuff but I was clueless yesterday. Thank you for the kind words.

  • darrel

    Great piece of writing. I would like to use this piece inserting my wife’s name in place of Maggie’s.

    • MaggiesBear

      Feel free, just don’t let me know in advance if she ever is dropping by the blog and I’ll hide this post for the day so she won’t get suspicious.