I sat the pot down and looked at the clock. 7:20 AM
Ok, 10 minutes to make my smoothie, pack my bag, and fix my salad. Perfect. At least, I have more time than I did yesterday to get to work.
Though still in focus mode whilst several tabs appeared open in my headspace, Evan’s next statement quickly succeeded in interrupting the flow of my thoughts.
“Let’s cook on Wednesday.”
Evan and I planned to host a couple coming in from out of town, and knowing my workload that week, I successfully planned, if I can say so myself, to pick up a pizza from Costco, make a nice cute salad and a quick dessert. That way I could get home, clean up, light some candles, and still have a good meal prepared.
“No Ev, I planned for us to do pizza...I plan on cooking Saturday when they spend the night again.”
“I think it’d be a good idea to cook. In fact I’ll cook.” He then went on to state this elaborate menu, that he planned to cook. It sounded great, however, his willingness to take on this task failed to resolve the mounting weights being placed on my shoulders with every proceeding word delivered from his mouth.
I needed more verification so as to remove each weight one block at a time.
“So you’ll clean the kitchen before you cook?”
"Yes," he said.
“And you’ll clean up after you cook?”
“And you won’t ask me for any help on how to cook whatever you cook?"
And then I went on to repeat each statement again, unconsciously, so as to remove the inevitable weights that still appeared to be weighing on my body—though without reason.
What is it? Why do I still feel burdened? Why am I responding to his request with anxiousness? Why can’t we just do it my way and carry on our merry, oh so happy, way?
I didn’t let it end there. My tone became more impatient, my tolerance obliterated in explosion due to utter annoyance, and goodness….could he answer this last question a little more quickly? I think I have 3 more minutes before needing to leave.
He called me out on my tone, and after gently correcting me...said
“I love you, beautiful.”
Nah huh. Why are you saying randomly that you love me? And ah, don’t call me beautiful. Please...don’t be nice to me right now. Let’s get back to business and talk about this pizza and dessert.
And Evan, don’t look at me like that..please don’t look at me like you …did when we were 16. Like you did on our wedding day. Like you do in moments when no one is looking. Like you are doing right now. Those unwavering eyes reminding me that your love is a commitment and not a fleeting feeling that depletes upon disagreement.
And like that, I slowly felt my heart relinquish my hardened heart that worry and anxiety sought to embitter. He simply smiled calmly as the sincerity in his eyes cut too swiftly and precisely at the unseen depths of my heart. He continued smiling with an air of peace and confidence, as if to say that what i interpreted from his eyes proved to be indeed true.
I suddenly felt uncomfortable and quietly ashamed as his words allowed the previous conversation to disippate slowly and yet quickly into another world.
Proverbs 25: 21-22
If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat;
And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;
22For you will heap burning coals on his head,
And the LORD will reward you.
I reacted to Evan as though he were my enemy, and I his. Instead he gave me a splash of cold water on the heap of burning coals upon my head with one statement.
Evan gave me what I needed, even though I didn’t ask for it. Not necessarily food. Nor water. But Love, which symbolically encompasses both.
(It ended up… we neither had to get pizza nor did we have to cook at all lol. For they never came over to spend the night lol.)