The scene: She was wired in, re-coding something stupid that got screwed up thanks to a lazy thumb dragging over the touchpad and causing everything to delete. He was on the couch, covered by snugly furballs waiting for her to join so they could watch Big Bang Theory together.
Two hours later, she's still at the computer. The black hole of web design, social media and blogs having taken over yet again. He gave up long ago and turned on CNN to hear the latest news out of South Africa. The volume is just loud enough that she can hear the details and report out her own anecdotes on Pistorious's stubs and the cricket bat.
At what point does something you love -- a hobby, a creative outlet, an escape from the perils of the real world, your fostered friendships (albeit virtual) -- at what point does it become toxic? And you know it in your gut well before it festers into a head. You know it because it's the first thing you do in the morning. No longer do you turn to face your husband.
Instead, you're running through Twitter at 6:30 in the morning because that's totally normal. And you know it because you spend your lunch breaks scrolling through Bloglovin'- even when it's your turn on Words With Friends with your husband. And you know it because you swear you'll drop the screen down as soon as he walks in the house, unplugged and ignored until the next day. But when the door opens, you're only halfway through your favorite blogs and you haven't even begun to edit those pictures from the weekend.
But you don't admit it, out loud, until your husband comes over to kiss the top of your head at 11pm tells you he's going upstairs and cracks one of those low-blow jokes that's meant to make you think. "I think I'm gonna start dating again."
As supportive, patient, loving, kind, understanding and gentle my husband is, he knows when he's being taken advantage of. And why, why, why wouldn't he feel ignored?
It's so totally anything but simple and we both know it. This space, these words, this community... it's transformed into one of the most joyful pieces of my heart. Little vignettes of the twelve-year-old burning through a packet of lose leaf paper with a ballpoint at her desk at 4am on a midsummer's dream, a penpal to a girl named Maggie who (though she lived all the way in Pennsylvania) became one of my closest confidants all the way through adolescence, the aspiring photojournalist capturing every imperfect detail of a family vacation to Paris in June, the PR major survived by espresso staying in the lab until it closes engrossed in layout and design... this blog is a place for all of those girls to dance and dream and sing out loud.
But it's not the best place to foster a marriage.
We both teach full time. And work part time jobs (plural, jobs plural). And then we try to keep fit and house keep and pay bills and stock a fridge and it's just a lot before we even get to be together. And so we get to the priority part of this lovely post.
Blogging will stay; it will always stay in some form, large or small. It will stay for the therapeutic nature of writing and editing and crafting that my soul just craves. This is me. But then there's my best friend, this guy who makes me laugh and shares in my adventures and writes the other half of our story. He is my priority. And what is love, truly, but the simple act of unconsciously putting someone's well being before your own?
So I will love. And practice the art of balance.
(you can find the rest of the love notes series here)
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