Saturday, August 23, 2008

Clint the Champion

I think maybe I’m a bad wife. I mentioned how Clint “picked up” running, didn’t I? Yeah, he’s down to a 6.5 minute mile now. Show off. And today was his first race. I should have gone, I know. But here’s the thing: it started at 7:30 in the morning! Who sets these times? Some sadistic person, I’m guessing. And of course, the race was at least 20 minutes away, and of course he had to be there at least fifteen minutes early.

So when he offered (very kindly, I thought…practically a selfless offer) to let me stay home, I took the chance. I want to be clear though: I HAD figured out a way to shave my morning routine down to about 15 minutes (skip shower, wear pigtails, pop contacts in and grab a pop tart—oh, and throw some clothes on) and just put Jared in the car in his pajamas—get him dressed after Daddy runs his race. I offered to do this because I want to be a good wife, the kind who stands on the sidelines and cheers. And I have to say, it would have been cool to throw my arms around his neck when he finished and was all sweaty and triumphant. Maybe I even could have held his water bottle for him while he did the running part.

But when I shared my plan for coming along with him last night, assuming he would be so excited by my sacrifice, he shrugged. “It wouldn’t break my heart if you don’t come,” he said. What exactly did that mean? Was there subtext beneath those nine words? If I’d said them, there would have been. If I’d said that, it would have meant “It wouldn’t EXACTLY break my heart if you ARE SO INCONSIDERATE AND UNSUPPORTIVE THAT you don’t come, BUT AT LEAST IT WILL CONFIRM MY OPINION OF YOU: THAT YOU ARE UNFAILINGLY SELFISH AND JUST WANT TO SLEEP IN.” But usually, he is pretty straightforward, and he doesn’t usually speak in subtext to me. He just speaks text, you know, just a means-what-he-says kind of guy.

So I stayed home, and I kissed him on the arm as he leaned over to turn off the alarm before it even went off this morning at some horrible time like 6:15 (a time at which I will all too soon be up and showered and shoveling in breakfast). I might have said something about good luck, but I’m not sure. Then I went back to sleep, and I may have sprawled a little onto his side of the bed. I’m sure, though, it wasn’t the “yes, he’s gone, now I get the bed to myself” kind of sprawl. More like the “oh, poor guy, he has to get up this early to go run a race” kind of sprawl.

And he was kind enough to wait until 9 to call me and tell me how he’d done. He got 11th place out of 200 or more runners, second in his age bracket. He’s fast, I know. I’ve slowed him down too many times when he condescends to run with me, and when I tell him on the last leg that he can speed up if he wants to, he takes off like the 6 Million Dollar Man. I can almost hear that shimmering mechanical sound when he starts running at his own speed.

So now that it’s done and he’s brought home his medal, I can’t stop wondering: was it bad of me to stay home? Is his heart really not broken, or is it maybe a little bit cracked in a hidden spot? He seems happy and hasn’t made any mention of my absence at the finish line, so I’m guessing he’s really okay. But I still feel like a bad wife for accepting the easy way out. Again.


Clint (the champion husband,evidently) said...

It's all good. I don't think you are a bad wife. The next race I run, I'll look for a later starting time, But I wasn't going to run this one in 90 degree/90% humidity.


Stacy said...

You are definitely not a bad wife - just not a morning person :). I'm sure not either! I don't like answering the phone or having meetings till at least 10:30am. By then I've had my breakfast, drank my tea and the sun is making the day bright. Love reading your blog - I am so glad Allison shared the link with me!

Kir said...

Thanks, Stacy. I enjoy reading your blog too. And maybe that's it: I'm just not a morning person, unless I have a really good reason for getting up a good book to read or an important shopping trip. ;)

Ron Samul said...

Okay -
1) Running for sport is cruel.
2) Waking before 7:00 is also sadistic.
3) Getting the kids, the breakfast, and the pack up is complicated.
4) Getting the kids there and unpacked only to see Clint run by (apparently fast) only to pack them up and meet him at the finish line - is difficult.
5) Running that fast - crazy.
6) Running faster than most people there - crazy-ier.
7) Watching your wife cave in, loaded with guilt, so you can go and run the race you want and leave when you feel like it... priceless.

Nice job Clint! Congrats.

jen said...

Yay Clint!!!