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The magic is still there.

This morning, about 6:00, I was trying to rinse blood out of a pillowcase (using cold water…I’m no rookie).

I had a perfectly good reason. It seems that during the night I had rolled over, looking for a slightly more comfortable position.

That’s not quite accurate. Since my back and one leg are more or less nonfunctioning, I don’t really “roll” over. Toss and turn isn’t a fair description either. You know those fish from Africa that can live for a little while out of the water, and move between waterholes by flopping and thrashing their way? Yeah, that’s me. To roll over, I kind of gather myself and fling my body in the direction I want to go. I attempt repositioning quite often, and once, in the process, I thumped my head against the corner of the nightstand.

It hurt, but, sadly, didn’t render me unconscious. On the plus side, there was a minute or two when I didn’t think about my knee or my back.

The next morning, I noticed I had punctured my noggin and bled all over the pillowcase.

As usual, my first instinct was to not let my wife know. This is a fairly standard husband maneuver. If men could stop doing things and then trying to cover up things that make their wives sigh in frustration, I’m confident we’d have a colony on Mars by now. A guilty conscience can waste an enormous amount of time.

Hiding the blood wasn’t gonna happen. I did the math. The pillowcase was one of a matching set. I needed to rinse, wash, dry, and reinstall it before my wife noticed, not to mention hiding the fresh divot in my scalp.


My second-best move was to make the incident into an amusing story.

Didn’t work.

She said, with some emphasis, “You must be the only person in the world who can hurt himself IN HIS SLEEP.” Some people might have heard frustration in her voice.

Okay, first of all, she doesn’t know everyone in the world, does she?

Maybe the world is full of people lurching around town with bandages in the middle of their foreheads from nocturnal misadventures. She doesn’t know - not for sure.

The incident put me a little on edge, which is nothing new. For most of our marriage, I’ve been a little nervous. I mean, I can’t sing, can’t dance, and I’m bald. For the first few decades of our relationship, I was a pig farmer, which typically isn’t considered one of the glamour professions. I clearly remember when the movie “Bridges of Madison County” was released. It starred Clint Eastwood as a National Geographic reporter who met a farm wife when her husband was out of town.

It’s a horror movie. I had nightmares for months.

I’ve done some reading about relationships and a common theme is that couples get used to each other, that they lose the spark of newness and adventure. That gives me hope, because I think I can truthfully say my wife has no idea what I’ll do next.

I’ve still got it, baby.

Copyright 2020 Brent Olson

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