Sunday, June 2, 2013

The Sore Throat And The Desperate Need

We were late to church- again. Those pesky ten minutes sneak up on us no matter how early we head out the door. We dropped the kids off at nursery, surprised when Addison decided to chose that moment as her first "THEY'RE LEAVING ME" fit.

We settled in the back of the church. I was happy that morning sickness chose to leave me alone this morning. I was feeling stylish and pretty in my favorite chevron black and white maxi skirt, with a black sleeveless top and a bold red necklace. I leaned into my husband's strong arm beside me and relished this opportunity to just be us.

It was a good morning.

Except for the small fact that I woke up with a teeney sore throat. As we rushed out the door with two dressed toddlers in hand, it was nothing a good throat clearing couldn't fix. But as I sat through the song service, testimonies, and announcements, this teeney sore throat escalated to an all-consuming painful thing that I couldn't take my mind off of. In fact, as the service went on, I pictured the little frog in my throat swelling to the size of my entire body- suffocating me- searing like fire in the back of my throat. I couldn't not think about it. And the more I thought about it- the worse it got until my breathing became tiny wisps of strangled fear. Fear that I would get one of those frantic choking fits right in the quietest moments of church- communion, anyone?

I wasn't going to make it through the service. Enter: request to husband.

"I really need you to go get me a drink."


I added (as an afterthought) "please." We were in church- after all.

"What?" He looked confused. Stricken. The sermon had just started and the congregation was all settled quietly in place. I had never made a request like this before of him, but I was desperate, and the frog in my throat had somehow paralyzed my legs. Plus, the drink station was at the FRONT of the church and a lot of people were watching.

After some hoarse whispers and the biggest cow eyes (yes that's a thing) I could muster, he begrudgingly got up to go fetch because it was clear that in that moment, I needed him....and his coffee fetching prowess. And he's super sweet like that.

He chose to leave from the back of the church, go down stairs and re-enter up in the front from a different staircase. I watched him carefully- his curly head bobbing up at the front of the congregation- trying to locate the decaf coffee for his ailing wife.

I (along with hundreds of other people) watched him ever so meticulously measure out just the right amount of cream and sugar until it was a certain color (he has a bachelors degree in chemistry- he is the master at mixing the perfect coffee blend.)

I could see that he felt rather sheepish about his delivery assignment, but he loved me so he was OK with enduring a little public show to get me my much-needed hot beverage. Plus, he had to sit the rest of the service next to my pinching fingers....jk...sort of.

His curly head bobbed all the way back to the door, and within seconds he was returning from the back of the church, awkward look on his face, and a steaming cup of perfect decaf coffee in his hands.

I had never loved him more. The frog in my throat began a farewell dance.

As my wonderful husband approached our pew, holding out the hot Styrofoam cup to me, something went a bit wrong. In his version of the story, my hand was unsteady when I took the cup from him. In my version of the story, the cup trembled before it made its way into my hand.

Whatever the truth (my version), in that moment suspended over me, the cup tipped. Just enough to send scalding just-the-right-color coffee all over my beautifully stylish black and white chevron skirt. As my thigh screamed from the burns, my skirt instantly became discolored all down the right side, and my husband's face became 100% more sheepish- I reached for the brochure on marriage counseling in the pew in front of me.

He took his seat next to me, offering up a used Kleenex out of his pocket to help mop up the spill. The people around us stared briefly at the husband/wife coffee spilling team and quietly asked- where were their drinks from the delivery boy.

I was no longer feeling stylish and pretty. I was covered in coffee. Now it had cooled down and was just a giant puddle of wet on my lap. But the sermon still had 40 minutes to go, so I tipped what was left of the offending cup to my lips, took a swallow, and instantly felt the world right itself.

Who cares that I was covered in coffee? I had a cup of the best coffee in the world soothing the scratchiest throat in the world while sitting next to the man who loves me the most in the world. It's settled. Coffee truly does possess magical qualities (except when worn on the lap as a puddle-like accessory).

I sipped slowly on that cup throughout the service- enjoying the brew, the creamer/sugar blend, and the memory of the look on my husband's face when he spilled the carefully obtained coffee all over my lap.  I leaned back onto my husband's strong arm as we enjoyed the moment just being us. Coffee covered, fit of giggles, wry glances between us- us.

I think for Father's Day this year one of his gifts might be a coffee stained tie. What? It will be a nice tie.

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