A Wintery night.

‘Power-up’, she whispered softly, as she popped two more ounces of the children’s Christmas candy into her mouth. Yes, they were starting to notice their dwindling supplies, but Mom was becoming more cuddly by the day, so how could they complain? Someone else was noticing her squishiness, too; someone who had to be at work by 10:30. She wrapped her coat around her, pulled her hat down over her ears, and slid her hands into the gloves that would keep the winter winds at bay. Head lowered, she pushed the door open, and went out to clear the snow from the driveway; making way for her son to come home safely, and for her love to make it to work on time.

An hour later she made her way back inside. Slightly sweaty, slightly out of breath, but smiling because she had brought comfort and safety to her world, once again.

‘Failure’, she repeated to herself. Of course her shoveling wasn’t enough. The damned plow…turning triumph into trudging, tedious toil. Her beloved son, whom she had envisioned singing her praises, now had to discover the lost driveway as if it had never been found. While she wallowed in the glow of her accomplishments, he fought his own battle against the snow and ice on his own. Later she would realize that he probably gained some ‘life-points’ that day, but for now, she would lower her head again, only this time with the weight of her son’s disappointment…

At 10:30, her love walked out the door. She noticed how congested the situation was. A bathroom, bedroom, and outside entrance within inches of each other. Not part of ‘their’ home, but a separate space that he needed. A space that was meant to set them apart, somehow brought them even closer together.

A man, woman, and pre-existing family…trying to make a molehill out of a mountain. As if…as if there was nothing before, and as if they could control what would come after. And yet,she loved to see him walk away. Not to see him go, but to have the comfort of knowing that he would always, always, always come back. He would always come back, and he would always (even if she made it difficult), be happy to see her. He made her believe she was wildly beautiful, and worth coming home to – and that is worth more than the gold of any wedding band.