The Face I love

Marriage has done funny things to my memories and vision.  I have learned the intimate details that make up the height, breadth and weight of this man.  Still, he has surfaces that my eyes pass right over.

My husband is 44 years old, soon to be 45.  His is a face aged by hard work and the sun.

And possibly marital stress.

I look at the man I married almost 25 years ago, and I still see the teenage boy I dated.

Of course, my eye can see that he is changed if I deliberately attend to the details — the lines about his eyes, the hair gone gray and silver and some of it just gone.

But my mind’s eye is stronger, and it sees what it remembers from long ago, what is still there — the gentleness of brown eyes, the confident shape of nose, and the lips quick to smile.  Shining through those physical details, I see the essence of who he is.

On the day I shot this picture, I noticed a small purple bruise under his left eye.  He also has a little scab on the same side further down and to the right.  In his profession, he often comes home with small injuries — part of the job and I don’t usually ask about every bump, bruise or cut.

But on this day, I noticed the bruise and the scab, I also sensed . . . . .that . . . .there . . . . .might . . . . . be  . . . . . .something . . . . . .more . . . . .to these minor injuries.

Because I know WHO he is.

So I asked, “Honey, how exactly did you get that bruise?”

From the zipline.  I was slinging it back to the treehouse, when the chain popped up and got me.

“And the scab?”  I prodded.

With a smile, Sid began his tale . . . .

Well, I was running a little late this morning and there was ice on the windshield.

So I rolled down the window and stuck my head out so I could see, and you know we have those overgrown blackberry brambles along the driveway . . .

(at the look on my face, he pauses to reassure me)

It’s okay.  I’ve done this before.  There are only 3 that stick out far enough to hit the car and I time it to duck my head back inside the car . . . . .ONE – DUCK! . . .clear . . . TWO – DUCK! . . .clear . . . . .THRE –OW!

I missed the timing and it got me just under the eye.

Uncertain what the proper wifely response is to such things —- laughter?  He could have put his eye out!  Nagging — that one has never been a winner, and besides, it makes me look bad.  Sympathy — maybe, but it is hard to feel when he looks so darn proud of himself.

So I take pictures and write about it and remember how much I love him — a win-win response for both of us.







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