Surprise

You know that scene in Wayne’s World when Wayne and Garth get to go backstage and meet Alice Cooper in Milwaukee? And then Alice Cooper invites them to stay and hang out awhile? And they look at each other, drop to their knees and begin bowing as one might in the presence of a god or a king or something? And they repeat, “We’re not worthy. We’re not worthy.” That’s kind of what I’ve felt like doing since yesterday evening.

It was James’ day off, but he drove me to work and picked me up because he told me that he had some driving to do and preferred to have the “good” car in the warm weather. He said he was going over to a neighboring store to help them move some stuff around, which often happens in the retail world. He said that if he had some time at home, he would do some laundry. And I secretly hoped he would get to the dishes, too.

When he picked me up from the office at five and we were on our way home, I asked how his day went as usual, and he said it was a really good day, which should have been my first clue because usually extra work for the Blue World Order doesn’t ever add up to “really good” in terms of “how was your day” answers. He didn’t go into detail or rant about anything, so we talked more about my day, about our evening plans, and so on. He mentioned the dishes. I asked if he’d done them. He said he hadn’t. He could tell I was a little disappointed, but it wasn’t a big deal.

We got home, and I got the mail. We chatted a bit in the living room, and when I went to put something away in the office, I noticed our stroller and car-seat sitting on the floor, when it had previously been sitting in the middle of the baby’s room. I asked him what the baby stuff was doing in there, and he said he had to move it. I accepted this response at face value and started talking about something else.

After a few more minutes, I went down the hallway toward the bedroom(s) to change clothes and go to the bathroom. James was just standing there by the baby’s door and the light was on in that room. So I looked in.

I saw a dresser, a crib, a changing table. Where no furniture had been before. My brain’s first thought was that he and John had arranged for us to get our hand-me-downs in there without me. But that didn’t make sense because I was expecting the hand-me-downs, so why be all sneaky? And it dawned on me that this furniture was brand new.

So that’s what my husband had really been doing all day.

Apparently, a few weeks ago, John decided that his kid’s used furniture wasn’t good enough. That for whatever reason, our kid should have nice new things. John’s on the board of directors of the organization I work for, and he proposed the idea of this significant gift to the rest of the board, and I guess they agreed with him. Now, I knew that the board members liked me well enough, but I had no idea.

There was a giant card that everyone signed. I stood there for a long time, just shocked at this show of generosity. I was floored, completely astonished, totally surprised. James did a great job keeping me in the dark, or at least so focused on my own little world that I never thought anything about anything. And why would I? This is something beyond anything I would ever even think to imagine.

I am incredibly grateful. And touched. And if I had any hope of being able to pick my big round self back up off the floor after, I would drop to my knees and bow down at the feet of this beautiful group of people, myself, a la Wayne and Garth. I feel unworthy. Awestruck. Amazed. It’s incredible.

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