The story of how an errant facial hair became my relationship wake-up call.
"You have a hair!" he shrieked. From his tone of voice, one might have thought he'd seen a zombie from Night of the Living Dead heading right for him.
"You have a hair!" he repeated vehemently, as if I were hearing-aid dependent, "... growing out of your face, right there!" I was wounded by his obvious dislike of the hair so I paused before answering to give the moment a bit of drama.
"Thanks for informing me," I uttered in a less-than-thankful tone, "I'll pluck it." He nodded in a manner suggesting that sooner would be preferable to later.
While digging through my makeup bag in search of the tweezers, I began to ponder the conversation of a moment ago. Why was I so put off when my husband drew attention to the coarse, black, ugly hair that had sprouted forth, full-grown from my face? At least it wasn't gray and curly, too. But it was quite long and had mysteriously sprouted sometime between breakfast and the cocktail hour. How is such a thing even possible?!
Deep down inside, I recognized that I should be grateful to the man for helping me avoid a potentially embarrassing social situation. After all, I could have left the house with the hair in tow for all the world to see. But hell, couldn't he find a kinder, gentler way to break the news that I was eligible to up-and-join the next carnival sideshow that rolled through town? Couldn't he at least say something endearing like "Honey, you've got a cute, little hair growing out of that beauty mark on your cheek. Maybe you haven't noticed it; you are a bit far sighted." Guess not.
Let's face it, that conversation would never take place here on planet earth where unrealistic expectations crash head-on with reality more often than I care to admit. Actually, conversations such as this had become the norm around our house: him shouting about things like the hair and the fact that I had stopped cooking for him altogether and me trying to find some peace among the searing bullets of his disappointment.
What had happened to civility? Was it gone for ever? I wondered, as I searched my face for other unwanted foliage.
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