But, BUT, he did a terrible, awful, horrible thing.
It all started on Friday night, which is traditionally my Bad Food night. Most Friday nights, the Palinode goes out with friends, and I order in terrible food that will likely hasten my death.
I recently discovered that my usual bad food joint also has Turtles chocolate cheesecake, so I ordered some along with my deep-fried somethings. I only meant to order one piece, of course, but the waitress who took my order had a very heavy Irish accent, or something close to it, and I sometimes talk funny, so when she said, "You want the Turtles chocolate cheesecake?" and I said "Yes, I want THE Turtles chocolate cheesecake," she must have heard "three" instead of my over-enunciated "the", and three whole slices of Turtles chocolate cheesecake showed up with my death food.
Prior to this dessert windfall, I had had a difficult day. Technology had been failing me, I was moody in a decidedly fifteen-year-old way, and some impoverished soul had declared my iPhone photos to be "…very mundane, very boring, very uncreative and pedestrian, lacking any originality or attempt to break free of conformity." Those three pieces of Turtles chocolate cheesecake juxtaposed with the rest of my day in my brain as an explosion of love. They became signs of my being enveloped and affirmed by the Universe, of the inevitable rightness of my creative journey. They were a love letter to me from the world, and I tasted each slice of cheesecake just to have all of them touch me deeply, meaningfully, and sweetly.
By the end of the night, I had finished one piece, and I stacked the other two with some leftover salad on the second shelf of the refrigerator to save for some future Very Affirming Celebrations.
For the next two days, I enjoyed imagining them sitting in the refrigerator. Whenever something good happened, I asked myself, "Is this event good enough to indulge in my Turtles chocolate cheesecake?" It wasn't until the end of that three days when I had a particularly happy response from a client on a project that I had worked at painstakingly. I decided that I had a Turtles chocolate cheesecake-worthy celebration on my hands, so I went to the refrigerator, I opened the door, and I yelled, "WHAT THE FUCK HAPPENED TO MY CHEESECAKE," because my dear, dear cheesecake was not there.
"What do you mean?" the Palinode asked.
"My cheesecake. My beloved cheesecake. It isn't here," I said as I swept my hand along the alarmingly empty shelf.
"Oh. Oh, no. I must have thrown it out when I cleaned out the fridge. I must have assumed it was old takeout leftovers," he said.
"Damn," I said, trying to sound as calm as possible and absolutely nothing like a wife who is imagining how good his head would look jambed in the oven door. "I guess that's it, then."
That I suppressed my rage and he survived is how you know I am a really good wife. Nay, I am a great wife.
Normally, I let this kind of thing go. Most days, I would just suck it up, get over the cheesecake loss, and move on to other things in life, because life? It has lots of things. With this cheesecake incident, though, I haven't been able to let it go. I mean, he threw away my love letter from the Universe. Three days have gone by, and still I remember this cheesecake. I think about its silky texture on my tongue and the crunchy bits of caramel embedded in its crust. I look at this picture, and I am shocked at the sense of loss I feel:
This grief is disturbing, and it has uncovered my surprising capacity for passive aggressive behaviour. I've been hanging back when we go out so that he is non-verbally prompted to pay for things. I have been keeping a little tally in my head to make sure that he makes coffee for us more often than I do. Today? I nagged him for twenty minutes until he went outside to buy us burgers at a food truck, and then I complained about said burger when he brought it back.
I may be a really good, nay great, wife for not jambing his head in the oven door, but I am kind of a poor, nay really pretty bad, wife for grudging and nagging and complaining about completely unrelated incidents for three days straight.
To be fair, though, he did throw away my love letter from the Universe like it was so much garbage. I mean, who does that?
So, I am an unreasonable person now who embodies all her faith in the Universe in two slices of Turtles chocolate cheesecake. I'm ridiculous, and I have no tidy way to wrap this whole thing up. There's no end to this story. I'm just working it out, trying to suck less, and assuaging my guilt through public confession.
So, I guess thanks for listening, guys?
And now I'm going to go exercise the fullness of the complexity of my human nature and eat the last of the dark chocolate the Palinode brought home, because it just feels right to do so. Like, really, really right.