Today’s post is by my Beautiful wife. It is a favorite of mine that she wrote half of our marriage ago (7.5 years) that still makes me smile. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
My husband and I have always grappled with an age-long dispute that many couples must deal with in the course of a marriage- the issue of climate control. It may not seem like a big deal during the normal course of a day but under adverse conditions can test a marriage to its core, at times even questioning the love between man and wife.
One such test came to us during a car camping vacation to get away to a cooler climate in the Montana Rocky Mountains. On our first morning I lay huddled beneath a pile of sleeping bags, my glasses in a constant fog as my warm breath crept from beneath the layers. A chilling breeze rustled a bit of my hair that was not tucked under a knit cap. Frost was forming on any metal exposed to the freezing air. And we were still just ideling in the driveway of our Michigan home that sunny August morning!
We had not always been at odds like this. Before we were married we cruised the back roads in his pickup truck, cherishing every minute of the wind roaring through our hair. It lent a feeling of carefree to our youthful demeanor. We had 2-60 air conditioning, that is, 2 windows wide-open at 60 miles per hour. We laughed at that joke every time. We were ignorant of the trials before us as we entered into marriage.
It wasn’t until I inherited my grandfather’s car that the trouble began. The car possessed a luxury that my husband had never experienced in the quarter century of his life. It came equipped with air-conditioning. At first it was a novelty. I don’t know when the corruption became so deep that it, in fact, altered his personality and overtook his life.
Our honeymoon proved to demonstrate his absolute addiction. The air-conditioning conked out at the Badlands National Park in South Dakota. The heat was intense and unbearable and since we had been camping was made worse by lack of showers that day. The louvers inside the vents refused to flip to allow the cool air to enter the passenger compartment. You have not seen pathetic until you’ve seen a 6 foot tall, 260+ pound, sweating, angry man jamming a stick into the dashboard vents while his new bride sat helpless on the curb wondering what she has gotten herself into.
Fifteen years have passed and though we are still dealing with the challenges of his dependence, we are coping. I no longer become disturbed when the air-conditioner in the house is officially fired up at Easter-time. I no longer become angry at the two hundred-dollar a month energy bills. And I did forgive him for nearly killing my father on a recent road-trip when Dad had to have his limbs amputated to frostbite because he was too polite to request the air be turned down. I have learned that it is easier to carry an afghan at all times than to fight the beast, maybe that is why our marriage has lasted successfully this long. Or maybe it is the knowledge I have stored in the back of my head that hot flashes are not too far away and turn-about is fair play.