You might already know how embarrassing I can be. My husband, Drew, and I are astounded at the new levels of awkward I somehow attain with age. Although I’m trying to become more comfortable with my dork self, I grimace when I have my moments in front of Drew because he ever so kindly weaves those memories into our eternal family history.
With that said, I thought I should tell you about a recent incident before Drew does.
Drew and I sometimes help out in the church nursery alongside a sweet, salt-of-the-earth angel-woman.
We had volunteered with this angel-woman a couple different times–and on this particular evening, I arrived at the nursery before Drew. We exchanged pleasantries, and I asked about her day. She reported a terrible migraine she could not shake, but the angel-woman was pushing through the pain to help in the nursery.
So when Drew arrived, I let him know that sweet Karla was fighting a terrible migraine.
If you’ve spent much time with me, you know I’m animated, I talk with my hands, and I specifically and repeatedly use your name because that’s how I relate.
Throughout the night, I frequently asked Karla how she was doing and naturally reported to Drew that Karla was not feeling well.
I used Karla’s name a lot. Quite a lot, actually. Deliberately, too. I thought I was showing empathy. I felt like we were connecting.
About an hour-and-a-half into the night, Drew, Karla and I are sitting together, watching the children. After I referred to Karla by name, Drew leans toward me and says he has an email he’d like me to read. He opens a blank email on his phone and types, “Her name is Darla.”
Drew is very matter-of-fact. He never misses a detail. Drew knew Karla’s name was Darla all along.
Drew is also very ornery.
More than once during a heated argument, he has intentionally waited until the argument is finished to tell me I have something large lodged between my front teeth. And he’ll often nonchalantly relay this type of information: “By the way, you’ve had something in your front teeth for an hour.”
But I rarely maintain enough composure to be mad because I’m usually laughing uncontrollably at his delivery. And truthfully, I so often have food in my teeth that I can’t expect him to tell me every time.
It was like that on this particular night with Darla.
After I gathered myself, I used the correct name–Darla–repeatedly and often, although everybody in the room knew that ship had sailed.
It’s also rather unfortunate that we each wear nametags every time.
The next time I saw Darla, I confessed. Like the angel-woman I know her to be, she claimed she didn’t even notice and was nothing but gracious.
Dear Darla, if you’re reading this, I’m sorry again about Karla.