If you know me, or have been following me for awhile, you know that I believe my husband speaks to me through music, which was a major part of his life, so it will be no surprise that I essentially started my day with a one-two punch to the emotional gut that just reaffirms to me that A is still with me and still trying to reassure me.
Despite actually showering and getting dressed more than 5 minutes before needing to leave the house (which is a rarity for me these days), I still ended up getting to my office about 15 minutes late due to an accident on the turnpike.
So, at the point of my drive where I should have already been at my desk, I was still in the car when Lenny Kravitz’s It Ain’t Over came on the radio. Cue the waterworks, which wasn’t difficult since I had already been feeling down this morning and thankful I hadn’t done a full make-up application. But hearing repeatedly that “it ain’t over ’til it’s over” was brutal.
Of course, it seems that A wasn’t quite finished with me yet because just as that song wound down, Whitney Houston’s I Will Always Love You came on. Yeah. If Lenny was brutal, Whitney was merciless. Aside from the obvious of the song essentially being a goodbye, yet acknowledging that the love will remain, this song had special significance to us as A and I had seen The Bodyguard with my father and younger brother when I was pregnant with my second child. It was such a long (and emotional) movie that I think I had to use the restroom twice. And although it doesn’t seem like the type of movie a big, manly man would like, my husband did. I think mainly that was because he could fully understand the intensity of the love between Whitney Houston’s and Kevin Costner’s characters. He was that intense with all things, and love was no different.
What it all reminded me of is that he will continue to love our family despite not being here in the physical sense. It really doesn’t surprise me, since he was our bodyguard throughout his life. He took that role very seriously, and as he told it, my needing his protection had a big influence on his decision to spend his life with me.
Early in our dating years, I once went to visit him at his parents’ home. I came through the basement door as I always did, and was halfway through a darkened office (trying to find my way toward the crack of light under the door to the downstairs family room) when he jumped out of the closet behind me. I don’t remember if he said anything, but I do remember screaming and spinning back around toward him ready to defend myself.
His initial reaction was laughter at how his little prank worked exactly as he intended (probably even better, because although I’m not afraid of much, I startle very easily, a fact to which my family will quickly attest). But when he saw how shaken up I was, he quickly went into hero mode, put his arms around me and rubbed my back, trying to soothe me. He kept apologizing and asking if I was OK, despite (I’m sure) holding back more laughter. He later told me that when he saw the look on my face, he never wanted to see it there again, and certainly didn’t want to be the one to put it there, and from that moment on promised himself that he would protect me. I didn’t hear about this promise until many years later, but – again – it didn’t surprise me.
He was that kind of man, and it was naturally one of the reasons I fell in love with him. Who doesn’t want a white knight at least once in their lives? Someone who can protect you from the life’s dangers. Someone who spent each day looking for simple ways to make sure his family was safe. Someone who checked the oil levels and tire pressure and texted pictures of the weather radar to let us know there was a “big storm” coming.
We were blessed to have our own bodyguard. And despite my crying jag that resulted from this morning’s reminder, I was grateful for it. And appreciative of the fact that had I been on time, I would have missed it.
So, my dear husband, “I’ll always, I’ll always love you”, too.
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