I was thinking about wedding vows the other day. My conclusion was that sticking to the ‘for richer or poorer’ bit - or it’s modern equivalent – is actually a lot easier than keeping the promise about ‘in sickness or health’.
Years ago, when my husband found himself unexpectedly unemployed it was a challenge to do a week’s supermarket shop for a fraction of what we were used to spending – but one that I rose to without complaint. In fact I quite enjoyed it.
But I have never been good at playing Florence Nightingale. If I’m ill I like to go to bed, dose myself up with OTC remedies, watch daytime television and hibernate until I’m feeling better. However long that takes.
I don’t appreciate being told I should go for a walk in the fresh air to blow the germs away, or being brought plates of food that I have no appetite for, however lovingly prepared.
Of course that’s ungrateful – I know, I know. And I know, too, that I should be happy to look after my husband when he catches the horrible cold I’m recovering from. Only he won’t go to bed. He is in the kitchen, opening cupboard doors, leaving his germs everywhere.
I’ve just asked him what he would like for supper and instead of saying that anything would be wonderful, he’s come up with a proposed menu that involves peeling and slicing and grilling and will make several pans dirty. And he doesn’t want it now - which is when I want to cook it – he wants it in an hour’s time.
Why? Because he’s just found a pot of hummus in the fridge and has helped himself to a snack.