You know, I love joking around. I love teasing. I love awkward moments. And I will even continue to say that I love Leah. But… my poor heart.
Currently, I am in Calgary, Alberta and Leah is outside Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan on her parent’s farm. Leah is taking a break after a rigorous first year in her Masters program at the UofC. So I said, being the wonderful and ever loving husband that I am—Go take a break. I have to work. But before you dive into your thesis. Go spend time away from it all.
On Saturday we are sending txt messages back and forth. Innocent. Innocuous. She’s out shopping and garage saling. Having a nice afternoon with her mom. She asks if we have the fifth season of Seinfeld and wonders if she should get it. And that’s where you see my response. (Leah’s on the left and I’m on the right in the picture)
I, on the other hand, am out. Picking up the necessities for a garden and to water the grass seed I planted. I am hard at work. Well a couple hours passes. After toiling through the heat of the afternoon and I decide to sit down at my computer for a little computer gaming and a cool beverage. Though I am alone and lonely, I at least have gin to keep me company. And then I get her text. I have news…
And then silence. I respond—Okay? And more silence.
I honestly don’t know how women would read that message. But I can garauntee every male knows what’s going on here. There is only way to read this. And it’s the perfect time too, right? Leah’s in school. She has another year. She has scholarships. There is no maternity leave here. And then that’s it. I realize it right there. We are broke. In an awful city. Going to have a baby. And I am never going to play another video game again. Never going to drink another gin. There will never be another dollar to enjoy the subtle flavours of life. Just a poopy, stinky, awful baby. And I bet it would be an ugly baby. Knowing the endless nothingness that forever pervades all life—it would be an ugly baby. And this is the end of all hope and happiness and the sun won’t shine and the hot will never be hot enough again.
And wouldn’t this just be a great story. I’m 800 kilometres away. And Leah—out with her mom—starts putting the dates together and one thing leads to another and they decide to buy a home pregnancy test. And they don’t even want to wait until they get back to the farm. So Leah pops into a McDonalds bathroom stall. Pees on a stick while her mother waits anxiously at the sink. They spent a little extra and got a test that tells you in seconds. And she screams and they cry and they hug. All the while the smells of fast food grease permeate every inch of this fantastic moment. And knowing the hardships ahead, but not wanting to wait another minute to share the good news, she opts to save money on a very pricey long distance cell phone call and sends a simple txt.
I have news…
And she stops. Maybe she should just call. And she ponders for a minute.
And while she is pondering I made up that entire story. All that is good in the world falling apart before my eyes. As I try to come to grips with the fact I am going to be a father. And well, holy shit and I need another gin.
And then silence.
I run to the phone and call her immediately. Sheepishly, I ask—what is your news? I take a drink. Her friend, who I know, is pregnant. Leah you can’t do that to me. I thought you were pregnant. She laughs. She knows. She’s messing with me. And then the history and knowledge of all women was unveiled to me. There’s a reason why Eve ate the apple. Knowledge of Good and Evil. Eve wanted to confirm she was evil—just like Leah is. Alright, maybe not evil. Maybe just sort of cruel to my poor, lonely heart.
And all God’s people said—Poor Rhett. Poor, poor Rhett.
Or maybe I just prefer when I am making the jokes.