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  • We have a little joke between us: "you're probably missing me now"

    It started around 20 years ago, when I was a needy newlywed - looking up pleadingly into my older and wiser husband's eyes when he got home from work. As he was hugging me hello I would say "you were probably missing me today?" Part question part demand. It was my way of conveying "I need to know I'm valued, that you care" because he's British, and you know, they don't emote a lot. And I am American, so.... yeah.

    You get the picture, enough said.

    Yesterday our sons were in a minor car accident, on their way to school. My husband was out of town in Salt Lake City on a business trip, and I was zooming off to the train station, heading off to NYC for a day of my own business meetings. I was running late, agitated. Highly annoyed. I was worried that I would miss my train when the the call came from my youngest son. I was sitting in traffic and strangely calm, cool, unfazed when he described what was going on. I knew immediately that no one was hurt, that this was just a minor inconvenience. I altered my driving direction and went to the site of the accident, said hello to the policeman and the person whose car my son had hit.

    "Go easy on him" they both said. "He's a good kid."

    I laughed, because I'd imagined nothing as an alternative. Anger? Punishment? Seriously? I could imagine none of it. All I was thinking about was that my boys were both OK, that they hadn't done anything seriously injurious to anyone else. And on top of that - what a crazy blessing! A teachable moment about slowing down, being more careful, astute, and not taking things for granted. Besides, I wasn't so keen on going to New York today anyway so, boom! Problem solved.

    The boys and I returned home and dealt with all of the minutiae - the phonecalls to the insurance company, the towing company, the body shop, the rental car place. I looked into my son's eyes and could see how exhausted he was. I texted my husband, telling him what happened. He called Spencer immediately, wanting to check in, to see how he was feeling. He circled back with me on the phone to make sure I had all the info I needed in order to propel the process forward.

    "You're probably missing me now" he texted afterward.

    "I am"

    "Good" he said. "We've got a good thing going on, you know? Good kids, all of it."

    "Yep." then quickly added "but It's too bad you're so needy though, you know?" thinking back to our earliest days together.

    I got a :) as a reply.

    Yes. It's true, we've got a good thing going on. And I am missing him now.
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