Seven year glitch

source: albertoandjeff.wordpress. com

Yesterday was our seventh wedding anniversary, so I should have expected a woollen jumper or some new copper piping. I got neither of those things.

We didn’t wish each other.

We didn’t acknowledge it with a card.

We didn’t go anywhere for a meal, like we usually do.

I guess we’ve got to the point where doing so would be a bit too much like lying. I mean, we are separated now. (‘I don’t live here any more,’ he feels compelled to remind me, whenever I rely a little too much on his good offices with respect to the rubbish or the recycling.) Add to those seven years another 10 of living together, and you get a chunk of life – the better part of it, really. And by that, I don’t actually mean better, as in ‘really good’, but ‘a lot’. Our relationship has accounted for a lot of our lives.

But what if…

What if we didn’t do anything because we were waiting to see what the other person did first?




And yet. Yesterday, Ben spent most of the day measuring the shed (where he used to stash his beer) and planning out how to fit a ground anchor so that I would have somewhere secure to chain my new bike. He checked out my bike, insisted I take it back to the shop because the brakes were rubbing and today, fit the anchor and set up a lock for me. He also left me a high visibility vest for night riding.

What does it all mean?

Because that was precious time. Time he could have spent doing something – anything – else.

Does it have to mean anything? Is he trying to demonstrate something to me? Is he … demonstrating his care through DIY?


Because we don’t – can’t – talk, I end up speculating about his actions. Frequently, I read things that aren’t there. I learnt, years ago, that what he does is all there is. There is nothing more to it. I persist in searching for clues to motive in a vain attempt at communication.

It’s deeply dissatisfying.

Seven years. Seven years of living with a remote and undemonstrative partner who eventually found expression and comfort not in me, but a can of beer.

Happy anniversary.


In memory of the promises made to me seven years ago, I close with this. Maybe there was something to it, after all.


9 thoughts on “Seven year glitch

  1. Hmmm. It does make you wonder. What if it did mean something? Even if it only meant he is ready to take a step towards being there for more than Rosie… like the very early stages of a friendship. Though maybe that’s reading way into things as well.

    How is your job going? Rosie’s school? My job hunt is over; even though it never really began. My new boss has been asking my husband if I was ready to return to the workforce since my oldest was 2! lol. He asks at least once a year and we always say no. This time I asked what he had in mind… and I have finally returned to work after 9 years! Part time, completely different, yet still the same types of duties, than I had back then; but so very flexible-it allows me to be home whenever the girls are. I never thought such a job even existed. The offer couldn’t have come at a better time or been more perfect for our situation.

    • Yes, with him I might as well read tea leaves! Cakes, your new job sounds wonderful! How lucky you are. What is it? Mine is crazy busy. Ugh. Congrats to you. I know you’ve been wanting this for a while now. 🙂

      • I’d rather drink the tea and skip the leaf reading! lol.

        Thanks! I am working for an attorney. I used to work as a court/police clerk, so this is SORT of the same type of work… just a different angle! : )

  2. I think whenever alcoholics get sober, there is a whole new world to view differently….soberly. So the things that were seen one way, are now seen another.
    It is the same for us families affected by the disease. We saw things one way, and now it is another.
    I think the DIY is a way of showing care. Emotions are hard to display and this is a good way of showing love.
    Progress not perfection. One foot in front of the other. 🙂
    xo Joanne

  3. Hi! I’m new to your blog, and I just had to say that what I have read so far was very touching. I’m looking forward to reading more of what you have posted already.

    God bless ❤
    Ashley "Cupcake"

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