Ah, I recall the days when my husband and I shared everything. I couldn’t wait to get home after a long day apart and spill out every detail of each moment. Problems with coworkers, bosses and traffic melted away when I shared my travails with him. We hung onto each other’s words, inhaling each inflection, intonation and enunciation. Everything else was just noise – cacophony, discord, sound pollution. After 33 years of marriage, perhaps it’s unreasonable to expect that he will still glom on my every word. Maybe there is some comfort in the knowledge that my voice is such a part of everyday life that it blends into the background of our time together. Yes, just like the mellow sound of smooth jazz or the rhythmic whirring of an overhead fan. Or, like dried paint on a wall.
Is it too much to ask, I wonder, for some recognition, an acknowledgement that I’ve uttered a word? Frankly, it’s infuriating when I make what I consider to be a profound observation, and then, 10 minutes later, he says the exact same thing. Such as:
ME: “Hey, did you see that there is going to be a full moon tonight?” Met with stone silence from him, and silent annoyance from me.
HIM: (10 minutes later): “Hey, did you see that there is going to be a full moon tonight?” Met with eye-daggers from me, astonishment at said daggers from him. “What’s the matter?” He continues, escalating the damage.
“Is my voice paint on the wall?” says I.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he replies.
This did not start happening until we passed our 32 year mark, and were closing in on number 33. Sure, I will concede that sometimes the sound of a spouse’s voice becomes so familiar that the content might get missed. But, in that case, the response should be: “Excuse me? I didn’t hear what you said.” That’s not what’s going on in my situation. Here, in my new world as it has unfolded, there are times when nothing I have said is heard or registered, let alone acknowledged.
Like I said, dried paint. Not even wet stuff, which probably makes a drippy sound as it meanders downward and perhaps splats as it reaches the ground. And, then, someone must take notice and wipe the colorful blob before it dries. But, before it reaches that point, it is invisible, blending in with its surroundings.
Much like my voice must be after 33 years of marriage.
Geezer goddesses, can you relate to my plight?