A successful marriage

It has been said that a successful marriage is the joining of two good forgivers. I have discovered recently that a successful marriage is also the joining of two good senses of humor.

Let me tell you about my friend, Jake. (The names have been changed to protect the innocent.) Jake’s wife, Leona, has MS–a terrible disease, one that both of them have been living with for a long time. Among the many complications of MS is the lack of ability of the body to control fluids. There are often too many or too few fluids. The MS body typically will retain way too many fluids. To the point where retained fluids make it hard to breathe, and hard for the hard to do its main job, which is to pump fluids. To the point where a medication–lasix in this case–is required to get the body fluids to a point where they’re manageable.

An unfortunate “side effect” of the lasix is its tendency to make the taker pee, and pee, and pee… And, oh, did I mention pee?! That’s what lasix does. It’s a diuretic, which means it makes you pee! Our friend, Leona, is at the stage with her MS that she requires lasix to maintain other bodily functions.

Today, I talked with Jake. He’s been sitting in a not-too-local urgent care with Leona since yesterday (!), having nursing staff give Leona enough lasix so that her bodily fluids are restored to normal enough levels for her to be able to breathe. So far, Leona has shed 7 liters (approximately 7 quarts) of fluids–mostly water–and she is starting to breathe easier again–in the urgent care. Jake says that they expect a bed to become available in the local hospital, so that Leona can be “observed” until the complications of her bodily fluids being that out of whack, can be assessed, treated if necessary AND she (and Jake) can go home.

You gotta laugh. What else is there to do? Fortunately–and I just discovered this today–Jake has got a terrific sense of humor.

I contacted him, when I’d heard about Leona being in urgent care. When I asked him on the phone if there was anything I could do, Jake said (and I can only imagine his deadpan expression), “Can you finish my pressure washing for me?” Jake has a yearly project of painting one side of the outside of his house. This year, this painting task was prepared for by pressure washing the siding on the house. Jake was set up to pressure wash (and I believe he had already started the job). To his query, “Can you finish my pressure washing for me?”, I replied, “No.” I tried (unsuccessfully, I’m afraid) to reply with the same deadpan delivery as Jake used when he asked the question.

No. No pressure washing for you.

I could almost hear Leona in the background, saying, “Jake! How dare you ask that guy to do YOUR pressure washing!”

It all comes out in the wash, as they say. Or in this case, in the pressure washing. Some things are important, life and death. And some things are not. For instance, pressure washing. In a lot of cases there really isn’t any difference. Again. You gotta laugh.

Please respond in the Comments box if you are so inclined. As always, thanks for reading.

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Rolling back the years (a PineSol moment)

A few days ago, my wife Jan reminded me that I had once taken up drawing. Pretty antithetical for someone who has always clung to the written word. However, I had recently run across my old “drawing stuff”. I had a pencil case full of drawing pencils and a couple of pads of charcoal drawing paper (one of which I am now no longer able to find).

Yes, I had been a drawer at one time–not to bad at it if I do say so myself. Whatever happened to all the talent, or at least ambition? Whatever happened to that charcoal drawing pad that contained my first few creations?

I did something (else) today that is sort of out of character for me. I love to wash floors. Well, perhaps “love” is a rather exuberant word. I do it because I have to. Usually I use an old-time cleaner on the floors called PineSol. It has a rambunctious odor that is truly piney and makes it smell as though you really washed the floor (even if all you did was give it a quick swish–which is sometimes all I ever really do).

Today, however, I used Simple Green. I used to be a staple, and I found the remainders of a jug underneath the stairs at our place, where we keep the cleaning supplies. I used to really love this stuff. Like I said, it was a staple.

Well, the first thing I noticed was the PJ, our elderly chihuahua didn’t freak out when I mopped with Simple Green, the way he does with PineSol. Instead, while I was mopping the floor in the kitchen, he curled up and went to sleep. The second thing I noticed was that I wasn’t as anxious while I was mopping either! Is Simple Green the secret sauceI?

Let me say at this point, the manufactures of Simply Green are not paying me, nor is there any sort of nefarious motivation on my part to promote this particular cleaning solution. In fact, PineSol is the one cue that Jan has when she walks in the door that I’ve actually done something! My mom used PineSol, her mom used PineSol. It’s sort of a family tradition. No one when I was growing up had ever heard of Simple Green. In fact, the raison d’ĂȘtre for a green cleaning solution (pollution, saving the planet) wasn’t even on anyone’s horizon!

So, where am I going with this?

Things change. Sometimes in ways that we can’t even imagine. Things, like cleaning liquids, can take on a life of their own. They can take on new meaning, despite our decidedly turning the other way. Simple Green is the new PineSol! Who woulda thunk?

How many things in your life have, like Simple Green, become a part of your life? How many things that once had no meaning (literally) now become filled with meaning, even if only when you are looking closely?

This moment has been brought to you by PineSol. What was that again?

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