Much More Than A Hallmark Card

I've learned the best way to get what I want from my husband is to tell him exactly what that is and how to make it happen. Photo illustrations help. Verbal encouragement is necessary (or, to put a different spin on it, oral encouragement). But he cannot be left to his own devices. Someone wise once told us to do things ourselves if we want them done right. But I say we can trust our partners more than that. If you want something done "right," I say, leave your husband a detailed plan, and even then, interpret the term loosely.

It was my first Mother's Day as the one on the receiving end of maternal goodwill that spilled into my home via telephone lines, satellite, wireless computer networks and one small luxury sedan. The in-laws, unknowing pawns in our Mother's Day plot, came to spend the day with their one-and-only treasured granddaughter.

Rule #1: I do not want to change ANY diapers on Mother's Day.

My husband saw to it that his mother was on hand for all diaper changing exigencies. She also fed the baby and cuddled her for roughly 5.5 out of their 6 hour visit.

Rule #2: I do not want to lift a finger in regard to anything involved in the cooking process.

Thank God for the grill, paper plates, and plastic utensils.

Rule #3: I would like an artistic rendering of my husband and daughter like the one I saw in the window of the photography studio downtown. Black and white. 16x20. A senstive downward gaze and an adoring smile shining up. Naked baby.

This one was trickier for my husband. After repeated calls for what it was, exactly, that I wanted, he whisked the baby off to the Picture People (52 miles, round trip) one night after work. He chose the chain for a number of reasons, not the least of which were the facts that a) they could turn photos around in an hour and b) the more reputable studios were out of our price range. So, on the Thursday before Mother's Day, Picture People it was. Tolby stole hearts with denim overalls and a pocket-sized giraffe attached to the front panel. When she disrobed for the pre-ordained naked time and snuggled against her father's chest, she peed on him. He said "oh, crap, she's peeing," and then wiped it up with the long-sleeved onesie she had been wearing minutes before. When he brought her back to our house, where I had been enjoying a strange solitude, I saw her silky skin gleaming from under those overalls like Farmer Jane after a day in the corn fields. I thought it was funny and sweet.

On Mother's Day, when he gave me the fruits of that labor, I was touched not only by the framable result, but by the blood, sweat and piss that went into it. And he did it because I asked him to. I've come to realize that he'll do almost anything if I ask, because he loves me that much.

Surprises are nice, but not if I expect them. It's the way he finds out what I really want and tries to make it happen that means the most to me.

What more can you ask for?

[Note: More of my musings on life, liberty and blogging can be found today at Motherhood Uncensored, where I have unleashed my guest-posting prowess as Kristen enjoys a much needed vacation. Come on down!]


Blogger lynsalyns said...

Lovely post, really, happy your mother's day was a good one with no cooking!

And guest mosting for Motherhood Uncensored! Kudos to you.

4:17 PM  
Blogger mama_tulip said...

I have to get into great detail with my husband when I want him to do or get something for me. I divide our grocery list into easy-to-recognize headings (Dairy, Frozen Foods, Produce) and include the correct spelling of brand names and detailed information about the packaging when I can. I have gone so far as to give him the plastic packaging from the brand of maxi pads that I wear, yet it doesn't surprise me when he comes home with a jumbo box of Tampax Super Absorbancy tampons.

Your husband took one for the team. He got peed on for you. That's awesome.

7:04 PM  
Blogger Tater and Tot said...

That, my friend, is how Mother's Day is done. Great job!

10:30 PM  
Blogger Mommy off the Record said...

Awww. Your husband sounds sweet--even if you had to tell him what to get you. I do that with mine too. The difference is that he doesn't always listen. Example: I said I'd like a spa day for mother's day. But he got me slighly wilted roses delivered to the door on Friday (not even on Mother's Day).

Oh well. It's the thought that counts, right?

2:08 AM  
Anonymous lildb said...

savvy, miss Binky. pretty savvy. I think you're on to something.

also, love the image of your babe in the coveralls sans onesie. cutie pie.

2:24 AM  
Blogger Michele said...

Sounds like it was a perfect Mother's Day.

This reminds me of the very best marriage advice my mother gave me - "Dont be angry at your husband because he cant read you mind."
It has served me quite well thus far.

8:12 AM  
Blogger Michele said...


Geez - I used to proofread.

8:13 AM  
Blogger T. said...

Loved the guest post. But I loved this post even more. Because there is no greater proof of a man's love for his woman than piss. And his ability to cope with said piss! He sounds like he rocks!

On another note, because I love you so, you have been tagged baby. You are IT!

10:55 AM  
Anonymous Wendy said...

That is awesome - they really do need us to draw them a map, don't they??

11:39 AM  
Blogger GIRL'S GONE CHILD said...

Awwww. I love him. (your husband) and good call about just putting it out there. I think I'm going to start presenting power point presentations to him before birthdays, holidays, normal days... hee.

Glad you had a nice mothers day. :)

12:16 PM  

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