Fatigue is a powerful force and it takes something equally powerful to counteract it.
Delighted Husband and I have been working some long hours at our respective jobs. Both of us feeling a fatigue of unusual intensity. Fatigue is more than sleepyness or the sense of needing to sit down and catch your breath after an intense game of basketball. Fatigue is a bonewearyness of body and soul. This is what we're dealing with.
We arrive home and after sending one last important email I step away from the computer and walk with him toward the bedroom. We cuddle and he tells me about his day. About the stresses and strains of daily work life. I listen and blurt out sympathy and indignation. Our companionship is sweet. Two best friends sharing the victories and griefs of the day. Suddenly, he rolls on top of me. I blink in surprise. Then smile at what he says next. Then smile at what he does next.
Companionship, love, marital play all satisfied, hunger is the next need in line. He heads for the kitchen to make himself a bowl of cereal. That is one of the most adorable things about him I think—how Delighted Husband is pushing forty and still enjoys a bowl of colorful cereal with the unabashed gusto of a little boy. I prefer more substantial fare, and find the thought of sugary cereal on an empty stomach deplorable.
I doze and luxuriate until my stomach starts to growl. I close my eyes and remember waffles. I remember when my Daddy used to cook on the nights my Mama had to work late at her floral shop. That's right. I get the business owner bug honest. And her store was there to offer beauty and joy to women as well. What a heritage. So on nights Mama was working late into the night like Santa's elves to bouquet-ify an entire wedding party, Daddy would make waffles. Waffles. I hadn't had waffles in years.
I ambled into the kitchen, nearly stood on my head in front of the island cabinet, and dug out the waffle iron. While it was heating, I opened a box of whole wheat bisquicky stuff and whipped up a batch of waffle batter. I'm pushin' forty myself and my waffles are more carb-healthy than Daddy's but the thought still counts. I anoint my waffle with real butter and maple syrup—not even sugarfree stuff, the real McCoy—and take a bite. I swallow and sigh and think "God bless us all every one." I listen to my audiobook and savor the waffley bliss. By this time, Delighted Husband is in the gameroom playing Wii. The chirpy happy music and roaring car engine noise tells me he is off to the races with Mario Kart.
Having savored my waffle, I want something lush from the protein category. I know just the ticket. I whip up a batch of eggs the way Friend Dennis makes them. Spicy and seasoned just right with mushrooms and cheese. I remember the first time he cooked these eggs for us on the first morning of one of the vacations Friend Dennis and his Dearly Beloved took with me and Delighted Husband. I remember how special it was to have someone cook for me. Me the one who loves to cook being cooked for and how cared-for that made me feel.
And I feel cared-for all over again. Remembering the meals my Daddy and my friend cooked for me, I feel it and taste it all over again, and I feel nourished body and soul.
Such simple pleasures. Such beauty. And I experience the wonder of feeling nourished and satisfied instead of hungry and fatigued. Simple things will get you through, my friends. Simple rest. Simple play. Simple food. Simple love. Wow, do I feel better.