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“Am I bothering you with all my little noises and chores?” my husband asked as I worked on a writing project in our home office.

“No, not at all, as long as you don’t talk to me,” I responded. “I need to concentrate.”

Five minutes later. “Hon, should I save these papers from the bank regarding our mortgage?” He handed them over.

“No. You can shred them.”

Two minutes later. “My brother sent me the funniest email forward. Do you have a couple of spare moments to look at it?”
“Not really. I’m trying to make this a workday. Send it over and I’ll take a look tomorrow.”

“Looks like I sent it to the kids but forgot to add your name. I’ll try again. Okay, here it comes.”

“Thanks.”

“Guess what? Now that we’ve refinanced the house and added an extra payment at the end of each year, we’re killing this thing. Great, huh?” Big smile!

ME muttering in prayer: Lord, what in your name, do I have to say to make it clear that I need quiet? And I’m not the only one. I read in an article in the paper this week that one of the greatest challenges couples face is a lack of personal space. I get it. I remember my mother going bananas with my dad in their later years. He loved to tell people that he never wanted her to be further from him than an arm’s length.

She, on the other hand, had a football field in mind. After fifty-some years of marriage, twenty-five years of raising four children, and the same number of years having her father live with our family, Mom wanted—make that needed—quiet time alone to think and pray and be.

But now that I’m a widow of almost two years I long for the sound of Charles’ voice–for his easy smile and big blue eyes that I adored. Each morning I light a candle at the breakfast table in his honor. Oh, how I miss sitting with him side by side eating oatmeal, praying, and planning our days. Now I sit in reflection, missing Charles, but knowing God is providing all of my needs.

“My God will use his glorious riches to give you everything you need. He will do this through Christ Jesus.”

Phil. 4:19

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Quiet, PLEASE! — 27 Comments

  1. Thanks for sharing, Karen. As I read your post, I thought you probably miss all those little interruptions now. Thanks for the reminder that those are precious memories.

  2. I think I do this to my Dan, talking when he is thinking and I know he will sometimes interrupt my thinking. But those are the gives and takes of relationships. Your story touches my heart and I want to remember to not mind being ‘interrupted’ when it happens again.

  3. Aww, Charles. I bet you miss him dearly. I understand about needing quiet space. With a full house, I sometimes head to a coffee house by myself to get a bit of peace and quiet. We all need it! I know there will come a time when my kids will all move away, so I try and treasure these times of noise. Blessings!

  4. Love this. Karen, this is so true and so real. Thank you for sharing the reminder to cherish who we have still with us even if it feels like you would like a football field between you sometimes. I loved the way you described Charles. I could see is sweet smile and awesome blue eyes. love, Heidi

  5. My hubby has been sharing precious thoughts with me a lot lately! I am going to stop what I am doing tomorrow and give him my full attention. I am sure you did that often, too, or he wouldn’t have felt comfortable enough to keep sharing that day! Blessings! Jerri

    • Thanks for affirming me, Jerri. Yes, you’re right. Charles and I spent a lot of time together talking and listening. It’s what I most miss.

  6. I really enjoyed reading this Karen. yes, often there is a longing to have companionship. Life changes into memories and makes for a different type of feeling about yesteryear and tomorrow-it’s like getting caught somewhere neither here or there.

  7. Ah, Karen, I can’t imagine how hard it is to not hear Charles voice. Do you play recordings of him? That would be special.

    Your story reminds me of when Zach was little and couldn’t talk. When I heard a mother in a store telling her child to be quiet, I couldn’t help but say, “I would give anything if my son could talk. I spend $600 a month on speech therapy.”

    Thank you for the reminder that interruptions are part of the relationships we share in life.

    Love and hugs,
    Bev

  8. Karen, thanks for reminding me to enjoy my husband’s company and not take it for granted.

    A friend of ours, who lost his wife, said about a month after her passing, “It’s amazing how soon a home becomes a house.” It was a reminder to me to make my house a home for my husband each day.

    I always liked the line from the 1957 movie, “An Affair to Remember.”
    “Winter must be cold for those with no warm memories. We’ve already missed the Spring.”

    I hope your cherished collection of memories continue to warm your heart & home and God’s peace brightens your day like your candle.

    Smiles, BRC

    • Hi Beth. Thanks for your beautiful comment. My dad used to tell us kids, “All you have in the end is your memories, so make good ones while you can.” I’ve always practiced his advice so you’re right, I have very comforting and happy memories of my years with Charles and I never took any of our time together for granted.

  9. Wonderful reminder of all of our precious moments that we did not realize just how precious they were at the time. I know the feeling of missing someone near and dear but I am thankful for all the precious times we had talking and enjoying each other and I know you and Charles had far more great moments of sharing than can be counted! “Hind sight” is always better than “foresight”! So you have reminded us to be aware of what we have available to be enjoyed at the moment, instead of later. Thanks a bunch! Margaret

    • Yes, I do, Janet. You’ve been a good and understanding friend and prayer partner through my time of loss and adjustment.

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