I don’t know if the planets aligned or it was just a series of very fortunate events, but today was completely spot on. Earlier the Ever Lovely Mrs J had suggested we both take a day off together. Like I need much encouragement to take a day off! 🙂 As Jimmy Cliff crooned through his exit from the dark, I thought just how good things had gone.
We dropped the kids off at their respective schools and headed into town together. There was much laughter, bright sunshine, and that cheery upbeat mood you get when enjoying time off. Mrs J had her hair done (looks fab, BTW), I had a run back to the car (who forgot the wallet?), we visited a few shops, and, of course, had some lunch together.
All of the above – sans haircut (as I don’t have much) – were spent together and much fun was had. We chuckled at some of the wilder outfits in some shops and probably had a bit too much cake in the afternoon. Oh well!
Over lunch, we chatted openly about various things. The kids, her work, makeup, and what we might do for a holiday.
The makeup chat was brief but one of those moments where there’s no judgement, just conversation between two people. Perhaps traditionally, that’s not somewhere a man – or husband – should go, but being out to Mrs J, we can go there and it’s no big thing. As she said to me once, at least it’s not sport. 🙂
What we didn’t talk about is the collapse of a friend’s marriage. It seems both parties have had enough of each other. The thing was, we could see it coming and then playing out like the obligatory slow car crash. Not through infidelity, trans stuff, drugs, or any of that. Just good old-fashioned love into loathing. L & J were pretty well off and never seemed to worry about money. Not that that suggests success or happiness; just a big bank balance. Perhaps others looked in at the material wealth and thought all was good. It wasn’t.
I had, perhaps somewhat egocentrically, taken it in and worried if one day we may go that way. There are times when I don’t feel like I’m a proper husband. You know, manly, buff, DIYey, hairy in the right places, and more interested in bloke stuff than what’s pretty and being able to accessorise…. Mind you, if anyone knows if there is a typical bloke anymore, answers on a postcard to the usual address. As an outsider looking in, masculinity seems to be as varied and under reinvention as much as being trans is. So many labels, so little interest 😉
As we got into the car, Mrs J squeezed my hand and gave me a smile. “We’re not like L & J,” she said. I guess we may be yet another middle-class couple keeping a secret (YAMCKAS? 🙂 ), but we get by. Conversation, compromise, and humour; they help keep us together. Oh, and a love of dogs and long walks.