Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Dawning Of My Electronic Age...

...through a labor-inducing device!

In case you haven't read it here before...I am NOT a morning person. People who know me are rather surprised by that -- I am up between 5 and 6 a.m. most days. But, in the "olden days", the story was different.

Cathy, on the other hand, loves the earliest part of the day. During college, she often arose at 4 a.m. to study. Her dorm was quiet during those hours and she tended to fall asleep early anyway.

At the start of our marriage, Cathy would turn into a pumpkin as early as 10:00 p.m. and get up before the sun. I would do the reverse, trying to get to sleep by midnight or 1 a.m. and waking up at 7 or later.

There was a problem. One alarm clock. I didn't think much of it. My "scheduled" wife would use the alarm to nudge her awake in the morning and she would nudge me a couple hours later. The only thing, as all non-morning people understand -- is that one nudge usually didn't get the job done.

The first nudge had to be followed by a solid "shoulder-shake." I need to explain this one. My sweet, petite wife was also in gymnastics as a kid. (Think muscle-wrenching, bone-jarring, fingers-bleeding pain.) She quickly learned that she needed to shake my shoulders assertively. Two or three times our neighbors placed calls to the weather service about what they were sure was an earthquake.

When that didn't work (it usually didn't), Cathy would turn the lights on and make continuous noise all around me. Finally, bless her soul, she would yell, "It's 8:15! Are you going in at 9:00 today? Are you still going to ride your bike? Are you going to shower?"

About that time I would get some tiny message way down in the fog of my brain and think, "I'd better get up." Over the next few minutes, I would gradually accelerate to full speed. That means I would starting rushing like a runaway freight train and get angry at anything or anyone who slowed me down.

For some strange reason, Cathy didn't like this arrangement. I can't for the life of me figure out her problem. My puzzlement didn't change her resolve that we must do things differently.

The day came. She told me that, from then on, she would awaken me ONE time. I got to set the moment for the wake-up call, but she would not be my snooze button. I couldn't believe her "selfishness" when she refused to do what I wanted.

But I adapted. At first, I crawled out of my fog before it swallowed me again. Then. One day. I fell back asleep. I was late. It was horrible. I blamed Cathy. She refused to accept my responsibility.

Gradually I got my own alarm clock. By that time, I didn't really need a snooze button. I'm still not a morning person. But I'll be up early tomorrow. Probably out running before the sun comes up.

Thanks, Cathy!

Dear reader, what bad habit did you have to break in your marriage?

5 comments:

CHEWBARKA said...

I am working on trying to let Larry do things his own way WITHOUT QUESTIONING everything he does. It's HARD because I know MY way is the BEST way... SALT helped me see that "I am not God" and Larry's way is just as good as mine. HUMPH (I said "I'm WORKING on it"!!)

C. Beth said...

Bringing up big "issues" that need to be "discussed," late at night. Lots of emotional arguments that way. Not perfect yet but I don't do it very often anymore!

addhumorandfaith said...

The "wife posing as alarm clock" was a problem for us too, until Hubby went away to school for 10 months. No Sandra to wake him. He learned to get up on his own. When he was done with the schooling, he came home with a habit of getting up on his own. Problem solved.

Rachel Cotterill said...

My husband is my alarm clock - fortunately he also drives me to the local cafe for breakfast, so I have an incentive to get out of bed the first time ;) It works for us so far, but I can set an alarm if I need to. Just don't usually need to because he wakes at 5am!!

Sam said...

Thank you, Chewy, Sandy and Beth. Rachel, I tried to hide your comment from Cathy. I was afraid she would want me to take her to breakfast everyday, too!