Last night Mr D wanted to write.
“Yeah, and?” you say, “Don’t we all?” you say, “Get a blog,” you say, “and join the club…”
Well, he’s got a way with words, this is true. In fact, those who know him frequently comment on how much he has to say (which drives him to distraction), but it’s only since The Blossom entered our lives that he has mentioned an actual desire to write. Up until last night he has considered the desire too confronting and has successfully buried whatever was driving the need to pour his heart onto a page under ‘other things to do’.
It’s the man in him, you see. He’s a sensitive flower under that fluorescent tradesman’s uniform (a stereotype he loathes) – he cries during One Born Every Minute, he weeps at any story involving the death of a family man and he has a morbid, empathetic fascination with war stories – but he doesn’t want to be a soppy sap. So he’s resisted the urge to gush about his family on paper… until last night.
We lay in bed and he said the magic words. I pointed to the notebook I had put on his bedside table for just such a moment, and said, “Do it. Now. Get up.” I know, it doesn’t sound like encouragement, but warm fuzzy you shoulds have had no effect so far. I had to get tough.
He was, as usual, reluctant.
“Well give me a pen, then.” This was more a challenge than a request. He fully expected me to throw my hands up in defeat and let him off the hook. Well, he didn’t think that one through very well, did he? A wanna-be-writer without a pen? Dreaming. So I wordlessly handed him one. Checkmate. He went away and, half an hour later, tossed his notebook on the bed.
What lay in those pages was the essence what I admire most about Mr D – his capacity to appreciate. Everything.
He marvels at Little Lion digging in the dirt – his little shoulders bent to the task, his little legs sticking out of this little boots, his dusty face in deep concentration – and he feels blessed. I see the Little Lion creating more washing.
He wishes The Blossom would take a bottle of expressed milk so he could sit quietly in the big armchair in her room, lights dimmed, to feed her through the night. So do I.
He loves how Little Lion’s ‘help’ makes him slow down, how The Lion’s presence makes him more considered, more measured, more forcibly relaxed. I get frustrated that everything takes twice as long.
He paces around his yard, relishing the ‘potential’ of the place. I see what tasks we should have done last weekend.
He revels in the fact that I cook dinner every night. I steam a few veggies and burn a couple of snags and feel like a failure.
He ends each day with a sigh and smile and a deep appreciation for the life he has. I think about what will be better tomorrow.
He says, “Life is good.”
I think he is good.
I want to be like Mr D.
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