What a word. There are a lot of meanings and applications for the word as well. I can remember my Dads treatment of my Mother. If ever a man idolized a woman it was this relationship. I can remember anything my Mother even mentioned she liked, thought she would have enjoyed, or remotely desired she had within weeks. Watching this behavior of course was influential, on me, to say the least. I also learned much later in life that there were some bad results from this undying love. Debt is the first thing to come to mind, but my Dad didn’t seem to care and we were really none the worst for his total dedication to my Mother. He even would go out on limbs and try to get out in front of her wants. Now it has to be said here I can’t remember my Mother being a needy woman. In fact, I can remember her trying to curtail his gift giving to something manageable. He loved to buy, sell, and trade jewelry. My Mother loved the jewelry, but there were limits even for her. I remember the first ring he bought her. It is a beautiful fish tail diamond ring. It was always her favorite and there was one rule. He could never trade that one. It was special. My wife now wears that one and every time I see it I think of my Mom and Dad and the special relationship they had together.
While sitting around my dining room table the other night we were winding down and talking over one another, as we often do, and there was something said that sparked this post. My claimed sister has a daughter my claimed niece, I guess! She is dating, what we all feel like, is one of the most special young men we have met in a good while. He is a pilot with an airline. He is stable, smart, and caring especially where his girlfriend, my claimed niece, is concerned. Her Mother sitting at the table said something I have heard in the past, many times, but it was just said at the right time the other night. She said “watch how your boyfriend treats their mother. That’s how they will treat you.” WOW how revealing a statement is that. If this is the case then how was my father, as a teacher, and how am I as a teacher to my son? As I said in the opening there was no better teacher than my Dad. I would like to think I treat my wife special. She really doesn’t want for anything I know of, and if she did I am afraid I would do anything to get it for her, save going into debt. We have had this conversation and if I when into debt it would do more harm than good, which is a good thing.
My son is the product of a divorce. He lived with his Mom most of the time only coming to me when she was either too sick to take care of him, or when he was to wild for her to handle him. So I have not had a lot of time to show him how to treat someone you say you love. He is now 22 and has been in a couple of relationship. I also know how he treats his Mother. I am sad to say I don’t think I have done a very good job. I could blame it on the situation or a million other things, but I will not take that road. It is still my fault he will miss the joy of a special relationship unless there are some changes in his life. I know this is a little strong to say he will never be in a special relationship but he is more about him than the team in every circumstance I have ever seen him face. I was never able to get across the philosophy of, there is no I in team. He takes the Michael Jordan stand; there is no I in team, but there is ME. And any special relationship is a team. I think about the relationships I see now and how they all show this characteristic. In my Memphis family every relationship is a team effort. From my members going though the Cancer together, to the ones going though the graduations and the birth of their first grandchild, to the ones who have seen a special young man rise like a phoenix from the ashes of a broken state to become something we all knew was there and are so proud of today. But each required a team effort. I can remember whenever my Dad would be down and he struggled a lot with that my Mother was always there to make sure he knew she had his back and would do anything to make sure he pulled out it and he always did thanks to her. I can remember when he died she never ever saw another man for the 22 years she lived until she rejoined him 2 years ago. She always said there would never be another Bill. What a statement of treatment.
The new parents–to-be reflect the same philosophy. The new Dad treats his wife exactly like he treats his Mom. He loves her and always shows concern and care in every situation I have every witnessed. So I guess it is true. Watch how they treat their Moms ladies.
Well as I sit here and write this I can only hope my claimed niece can see and takes the time to enjoy the very special treatment she is receiving from this very special young man. Is this an endorsement of marriage? Is it my area to be in, NO? Not my place. Would it make me mad, no? All I want is for her to be as happy as I am in my life. Or as happy her Mom is in her life; or as happy as all of my Memphis family always seems to be. Do we have our moments, of course? Do we love our way through them absolutely, team. What a blessing for me to be in this place, at this very special time. I love my life and I love my family and friends.
Think I will go and tell my angel of a wife how much she means to me. Give her a hug and absolutely get lost in the moment. And as I hug her thank my Dad for showing me how to do it. And thank my Mom for showing me how to allow it. I miss you both every single day.
The Blessed Man