I read a stupid novel and got into a fight with my husband.
So that sounds a little absurd. Allow me to explain…
I love a good story. And there’s this crazy phenomenon in Christian novels, especially historical Christian novels, where the love stories are always perfect. The man “gazes at her with tender affection” And “she saw a flicker of interest in his eye”. And inevitably somewhere in that novel there is that line where the God-honoring hero of the woman’s heart says, “God has given me my greatest treasure in you.”
I read that last night, and then woke up this morning accusing him of “not treasuring me”.
His response was, “Um, where is this coming from?”
It’s not like I could say, “Well, Jocelyn and Thomas in the book I’m reading…”
Good night. I’m 15 again. Someone call Taylor Swift so she can write about my teenage angst.
Also, the heroine of the story is a hard worker. She is fallible in her belief at times, but never in her work ethic. She can be tired, but she pushes through.
I want, just once, to see a main female character of a Christian novel talk about her muffin top, the rust stains in her toilet, the laundry on her couch, and the Hot Wheels cars littering her bedroom floor.
Now THAT’S a little more believable.
Here’s MY novel…
Her school- age daughter appeared in her dream telling her that she had overslept.
This was real. The shadowy outline of the eight year old child telling her that the day was ruined now wasn’t just an image in a dream talking to her.
Twenty minutes late to start the day. She’d never catch up now.
There was an argument over breakfast because they were out of the cereal that was the child’s favorite. As tension grew, the weary woman placed the child’s morning medicine and vitamins in front of her. She ambled down the hall to wake up the middle child, still in her sweat soaked pajamas (since when did she start having night sweats? Maybe she should mention this to the doctor at her next appointment that was….when, again?).
The middle child did not like to be woken up. She was like a bear being wrestled from their hibernating state too early. When Husband finally brought the middle child to the breakfast bar to consume her oatmeal, her hair looked incredibly…large. She had fallen asleep with it wet and uncombed because Tired Mom had been too….well, tired…to bother with it last night.
Boy Child awakens. Whines, actually yells, for his Monster Truck book. He is dismissed and left to yell alone, wandering like a lost puppy, until he finds and retrieves book on his own.
After packing two lunches and basically manually dressing Eight Year Old First Daughter like a rag doll, there was a scramble to find The Middle Child’s shoes. Had she left them next to the broken trampoline missing far too many springs to be considered a safe option for play anymore? Were they in the bathroom where she had undressed completely from the waist down when she had some “issues” in the bathroom last night? Were they in the OTHER bathroom where she had taken her bath and splashed out several gallons of water completely soaking the bathmat that needed to be washed again?
Shoes found. Last minute scramble for books that should have been packed last night. Lunches (packed in white paper sacks because the lunchboxes need washing) hurriedly grabbed from the counter.
Husband shuffles Eight Year Old First Daughter and Middle Child out the door and into the van.
Tired Mom collapses on the couch, resolving like she does every morning that tomorrow will be better. They’ll get up on time, everything will be right by the door already packed, and the moon and stars will align just perfectly to get the kids to school on time.
Husband reappears and mumbles something.
Actually, he probably didn’t mumble. It’s just that he’s been so sick for so long that now his tonsils are swollen and he can barely speak.
After translation, Tired Mom discovers Eight Year Old First Daughter’s lunch bag has ripped open. She needs a new bag.
The rest of the morning is a blur. Tired Mom falls asleep with coffee in her hand while Boy Child watches Mater’s Tall Tales. (If you don’t know who Mater is, you haven’t had a boy child in the last 8 years…)
Tired Mom showers and Husband dresses Boy Child.
But when it’s time to go, Boy Child just cannot bear to leave Mater on the TV. Screaming erupts.
Screaming persists until Husband manhandles him to his car seat and Tired Mom puts the van into drive to head to preschool.
When Tired Mom returns home, she cleans the kitchen in a still half-awake state while downing her second cup of coffee. That second cup of coffee has little effect because after Tired Mom does dishes and picks up living room and vacuums and sweeps, she ends up collapsing on top of the bed that Husband has already made and falls asleep for half an hour.
But that guilt-ridden nap comes only after Tired Mom accuses Husband of not “treasuring me enough”, because she read some dumb novel.
Tired Mom is such a nerd.
Please tell me that SOMEONE out there can relate to that.
Don’t get me wrong. I have a wonderful life…and I love, love, love my family…and I adore my husband. He is wonderful, and finally caught on to that whole “last person out of bed has to make it” deal I’ve been throwing out.
But seriously, he helps out a lot around here…and truth be told, he’s been really sick for the past several weeks with some sinus junk that he just can’t shake. And yet, he STILL takes the girls to school and helps out around here. (This is not a novel. This is real. I promise.)
Oh, and I apologized for my silly little girl antics.
But it did get me thinking, how many other ladies fall into that trap? That trap of wishing their life would turn out so perfectly like in the novels…even the “inspirational” fiction. Sometimes in our marriages, it’s not all romantic…not when you’re cleaning up vomit together or playing rock-paper-scissors on who has to put who to bed, you can really get to know the snarky side of someone.
At the same time, we read novels to escape. I just shouldn’t be jealous of a fictional person’s life.
Good grief. That sounds so lame.
So…life isn’t ALWAYS like the novels. But you probably already knew that.
Oh…and the novel I’m reading? Yeah, it’s set in the Roanoke Colony. You know, the one that completely disappeared and was probably massacred? I’d say that this heroine’s story doesn’t turn out all nice and cheery and wrapped in a little bow like a lot of stories. I think that I’m faring better than she is…