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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Body Language (11/25/10)

TITLE: James and Louise
By Yvonne Leigh


ďOh, come on! Stop turning your back to me!Ē Look at me talking to his back again. Thereís more than one way to have the last word, and he knows how to say it. Having an argument with him is useless and I donít know why I insist on doing it. Thereís no way I can win. Iím going to learn a way to make my hands look calmer or Iím going to use them to choke him one day.

Heís unhappy with my housekeeping. Again! The housekeeping occupies his mind and my paycheck he takes for granted. Why donít men realize that time is like money; it can only be spent once. A person would think they consider women to be some divine entity that can bring home the bacon at the same time they are cooking it. Thatís what Iíd like to tell him if he would keep his face to me. What I need is a frustrated screech.

I tried to tell him that I had plans for today, but he insists that I do deep cleaning. Itís my day off and his only care is that I have time for housework. Nothing I say is hitting home, and heís pretending he doesnít understand. Thatís a crock! He knows very well what I said. Well, if he wants to clean, he can clean. Heís in there all red-faced; using too much elbow grease. Iím going to that painting class. He probably wonít miss me for an hour or two. Heíll be so busy not paying attention to me that he wonít even know Iím gone. Maybe the house will be cleaned before I get back. I probably should leave a note on the door.

This painting class is important to me. Thereís something soothing about being able to express your deepest feelings in a creative way. It makes you feel like your soul has had a back rub; and my, how my soul needs one of those today. However, I donít know if I can get this feeling of guilt rubbed out. Iím here on a matter of principle this time.

Husbands have a certain knack for touching just the right nerve. They can flip the guilt button that tells you heís too good for you. The intention in this housecleaning frenzy is to punish me for working and Iím not going to fall for it. Tomorrow heíll have forgotten it and Iíll still be under that heavy, ugly cloud of not-good-enough. One thing, though, while his muscles ache from making a simple job hard, Iíll have the painting class to remember .

Fifteen years ago my parents were dismayed when he asked me to marry him. Just like most other girls who are in love, I refused to listen to their advice and married him anyway. Apart from the fact that they couldnít communicate with him, they didnít have a problem with Jimmy as a worthwhile person . Their concern was his ability to support me as a husband. That was a subject way over our heads at that particular time. Long-term planning to most prospective newly weds doesnít even reach into next month, and, while we were ignorantly normal concerning our future, we knew we would be OK.

At the school for the deaf and blind, where we met, I was a college student learning to be a speech therapist and he was a deaf student learning a trade. To us it was a perfect match. Our intuitions were apparently on target because, for the most part, weíve had a good marriage. His ears are not the tools of his trade, but he does have a trade, and together we make a good living. As angry as I get at times, I know I made the right choice in marrying him; even if he does turn his back when he doesnít like what Iím signing.

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This article has been read 313 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Lollie Hofer12/03/10
I love those "ah" moments...so that's why it frustrated her when he turned his back. I'm glad in the end she could see where they were a good fit for each other.
Theresa Santy 12/03/10
I suspected there would be a twist at the end, but I didn't expect that one. Great job holding on to the mystery.

I loved the way the MC's heart softened toward the end.
Gregory Kane12/04/10
Certainly a lot of passion in this one. It all made sense in the end but I can't help thinking that it could have done with a few more hints scattered along the way. Isn't love (and forgiveness) a wonderful thing?!
Noel Mitaxa 12/04/10
As one of those wretched species called husbands, I was wondering how to make an objective comment. But your twist at the end drew me in. Nice build-up, and I did not mind the lack of clues along the way.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 12/05/10
I really enjoyed this. I think it describes a lot of marriages. The ending was great.
Cheryl Harrison12/06/10
Good job! I liked this line ... time is like money; it can only be spent once. Keep writing.