Sunday, 20 November 2011

The Three Men I Married


By Pamela Dowd 

I have been married to three kinds of Rodneys over the past two decades. The Rodney I met right after college asked my father for my hand in marriage, but he never proposed to me. He claimed bragging rights among his fraternity brothers. He didn't have to bend a knee to a woman. It never occurred to him that his boast offended me.

When I brought it to his attention after the newly-wed sweetness dampened, he said, "You married me, didn't you?"

As a young attorney, he made an unarguable point. I looked at the traditional solitaire diamond ring and remembered June 10, 1978, the day of our wedding. Though he hadn't officially asked me to marry him, he'd given me his solemn vows that day - vows we both intended to keep.

The week before our tenth anniversary, June 10, 1988, Rodney and I fought long-distance. I was 150 miles away at a work-related conference. Each phone conversation left me in frustrated tears. I arrived home five days later in a foul mood with a sour disposition. I knew it was the end of a difficult relationship, and as much as I didn't want to leave the marriage, I convinced myself that he wanted out.

When I arrived home, I only wanted to see our three children. Rodney was the last person I wanted to spend time with, but he was the only person waiting for me. He suggested a walk down town in the heat. The vapors rose from the sidewalk on that June day and steam seemed to be pent up inside me as I tried to feel happy to be home.

As we walked he tried to engage me in small talk. He took my hand. Sweat mingled in our palms, and I thought of all the sweat and toil that had gone into keeping both of us sane through so much fighting over the years. Our marriage felt like the dry leaves clinging to the trees under which we walked.

He said, "Sit down," and indicated the courthouse steps.

I knew what was coming, and though I didn't want it to happen, I felt unprepared to stop it. I held my breath, shut my eyes and waited for the word "divorce."

"Would you marry me again?"

My eyes popped open as I said, "What?"

Rodney held a ring box gingerly before me. He laughed a gentle laugh and dropped down on one knee.

"I said, would you marry me again?"

As he opened the box, a deep blue sapphire and diamond ring caught the sunlight and winked at me. I let my held breath out with a rush and said, "Yes!"

I'd never been more startled.

"I didn't like you being gone this week," he offered as an explanation for his incessant fights.

"That's what all that was about?"

He looked sheepish, but he nodded and grinned.

"Surprised you, didn't I? You said you'd do it again, and now you can't take it back."

I smiled at him and thought to myself - and so I will do it again.

As we walked home hand-in-hand, the leaves didn't seem as dull; I'd finally gotten my down-on-one-knee proposal. This time though, I entered the "engagement" with less hope than I'd entered the marriage.

Proposal or not, things had to change. We talked about that too.

We changed all right, and when the third Rodney came to propose, he did it with a flourish and a gentled heart.

The morning of our twentieth anniversary, he called me from work.

"Let's go to the Versailles exhibit in Jackson, Mississippi, today," he said, as if it were normal to take three-hundred-mile day trips. I've learned to say "okay" over the years to my impetuous husband, so I willingly agreed.

The trip was pleasant. We talked and laughed and shared our dreams. Before we crossed the Mississippi River, he suggested we change drivers. We stopped at a small convenience store, and while I was inside, he sneaked out the back door to retrieve a small box from the glove compartment. When he slipped back inside, I was buying Junior Mints to celebrate. I never knew he'd been gone.

Back on the road again, we soon approached the Mississippi River Bridge. Right in the middle of crossing, he popped a ring box open and held it at the height of the steering wheel.

"Will you marry me?" he asked with a grin plastered on his gorgeous face.

The sun glinted off the diamond and emerald ring. I gazed at the green ring against the backdrop of the verdant bridge high above the water below; it's a wonder I didn't crash the car. Rodney had planned the perfect proposal for me, his incurably romantic wife.

We exited on the other side and talked a security guard at the Mississippi hospitality centre into capturing the moment on film. All my questions of when and how were answered with a hug and a smile. He'd been listening to my heart and taking notes for twenty years; he knew me well.

It's like I always tell young brides, "You don't often get the sensitive caring husband you long for on the day you marry him. That process takes years. You grow there together."
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Books Sold - 6 Nov 2011 to 31 May 2012

Some of you have asked me for my total number of books sold to evaluate KDP Select so here it is. Bear in mind, that results will vary based on genre and author. Good luck and remember, Keep Moving Forward.

Total - 120,836

1. Excuse Me, My Brains Have Stepped Out
Amazon Kindle - 42,559
Paperback -
Smashwords -

2. Frequent Traveller
Amazon Kindle - 35277
Paperback -
Smashwords -

3. Dora's Essentials - Books, Blogs & Smiles 1
Amazon Kindle - 462
Smashwords -

4. Mirror Me Martha (Short Story)
Amazon Kindle - 281
Smashwords -

5. Drive On Hope (Short Story)
Amazon Kindle - 190
Smashwords -

6. Blog-A-Licious Directory 2012
Amazon Kindle - 1
Smashwords -

7. Pandora's Reading Room 1
Amazon Kindle -
Paperback - N/A

8. The Cat That Barked (Short Story)
Amazon Kindle -

9. Dora's Essentials - Examining Anxiety
Amazon Kindle -

10. Dora's Essentials - Books, Blogs & Smiles 2
Amazon Kindle -

11. Elevenses from Around the World
Amazon Kindle -

12. Genetically Modified Foods vs. Sustainability
Amazon Kindle -

Blog-A-Licius - Sherbet Blossom

SherbetBlossom

Blog-A-Licious

Dealightfully Frugal

Blog-A-Licious - The Few, The Proud, The Wife

Blog-A-Licious

My Soul Slippers

Blog-A-Licous - Textbook Mommy

Blog-A-Licious - Blue Frogs Legs

Blog-A-Licious - Pretty All True

Pretty All True

Blog-A-Licious - tbaoo

tbaoo

Blog-A-Licious

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Blog-A-Licious - The Invisible Art

Blog-A-Licious - Rediscovering Domesticity

Rediscovering Domesticity

Blog-A-Licious - Quiver Full

Blog-A-Licious - Cori's Big Mouth

Blog-A-Licious - Great Fun

Greatfun4kids

Blog-A-Licious - Busy Wife

Blog-A-Licious - Steps To Happiness

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Blog-A-Licious - Toby & Max


Blog-A-Licious - Amelie

Raising Amelie

Blog-A-Licious - Peas In A Pod

Blog-A-Licious - Riley

Blognostics - Poetry

BlogNostics

My Awards - September 2010

My Awards - September 2010
Awarded By Jo Frances

My Awards - May 2011

My Awards - May 2011
Awarded By Alejandro Guzman

My Awards - May 2011

My Awards - May 2011
Awarded by Kriti Mukherjee

My Awards - April 2011

My Awards - April 2011
Awarded By Roy Durham

My Awards - June 2011

My Awards - June 2011
Awarded By Sulekha Rawat

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