This week I want to spend some time talking about something near and dear to my heart. Something, actually someone, who often gets overlooked, taken for granted and sometimes pushed to the side, unintentionally, of course, because life gets so busy. Someone whose touch brightens everything in our family and her heartbeat is the heartbeat of my family. My wife.
The job of a wife and mother is often a thankless one. A job that for the life of me, when I really stop to consider it, I’m not certain why anyone would even apply for it. It offers long, hard hours of work that often go without recognition or accolades, it requires endless amounts of responsibility for the well-being of each member of the family from me to the children and the very youngest of the grandchildren, leaving precious little time, if any, to care for her own needs.
When the phone rings, it’s usually one of the kids or the grandkids wanting to talk with mom or mamaw. Seldom do they ask for dad or papa. They know that she can take whatever is wrong and make it right just by spending a few minutes on the telephone, or by dropping by.
She pays close attention to each detail of our home, makes plans, makes beds, makes meals, plays the piano at church, tells me when I am singing off-key, makes sure I don’t leave the house dressed “dorky” and she even keeps a hidden stash of breath mints for when we are in public and she notices I need one.
My wife is also one of the toughest women I know. Regardless of how fervently I protest her giving me directions on driving, projects at the house, projects with my work or whatever, she continues to give it without hesitation. Personally, I don’t think I could be that tough.
She manages to keep our home running orderly and she even plays along and lets me think that I am in charge.
She is a best friend to anyone who knows her, and because she is a nurse practitioner, everyone scrambles to her side for medical advice whether she can give it or not.
She is a grown-up kid who loves Christmas, Thanksgiving, Easter, the Fourth of July, anniversaries and birthdays, and makes them special for everyone around her. Her favorite family get-together is the very next one – ya know, the one she is planning right now. She believes she is responsible for making certain that the grandkids spend time with, and get to know, their cousins.
Being the oldest child in her family, she feels responsible for everyone around her. She works hard to ensure everyone’s happiness, and she won’t sleep if she feels someone is unhappy with her.
She is my biggest fan. She picks up after me, she cooks for me, she tolerates my bad jokes, she just smiles when I make a fool of myself in public (and at home) and by the grace and mercy of a loving God, I get to wake up next to her each morning.
This Friday, April 12, is Patty’s birthday. And while I so often get caught up in the mind-numbing speed of daily events and don’t say it as much as I should, I wanted her to know, and you to be witness to how I feel about what she’s brought to my life and the life of my family. She’s my best friend.
Patty Day, happy birthday, my love.
Herb Day is a longtime local radio personality and singer-musician. You can email him at [email protected] and follow his work at www.HerbDayVoices.com.