She’s Always Got My Back

Reason number two hundred twenty-one for why I love her.

It’s right there, in the title. It’s kinda self explanatory, yet the depths to which she goes requires a little deeper dive. Let’s do this, Dear Reader!

First? To who am I referring? My wife, of course.

What a smile, no? And you can kinda get a glimpse of what’s going on in those yoga pants. But that’s all you’re gonna get, Dear Reader. Don’t be greedy. K?

Yep, that’s her. And yep, I’m a lucky guy. For the two hundred twenty reasons that proceed this one and for the limitless reasons that follow. Like her wisdom. Like her charm. Like her quirkiness, cute-sexiness, humor, generosity, concern, and….And of course her touch, her kiss, her legs, her booty, and every other inch of her. But today? It’s all about that feeling I get, knowing she’s always there for me, always ready to protect me, to stand up for me, and to be by my side.

Now I’m not tootin’ my own horn, but a decade or so ago I was at the bar with my best friend, Chris. Sitting there, minding my own business, he let me know that a dude wanted to start shit with him. The douche bag thought Chris was ogling his girlfriend. Seeing his girlfriend and knowing Chris’ tastes, clearly he was mistaken. Regardless, the asshole wanted a piece of Chris. And that’s when I stepped in.

I’m not claiming to be Joe Badass or anything, but for my weight class, I can definitely hold my own. I’ve studied kickboxing for several years and I was a pretty darn good wrestler; a good combo for MMA. And I’ve been in several fights over the years. I’m not one to back down from a conflict, when necessary. So…on that night with Chris, it was go-time.

The way it played out was I scrapped with the dude, while Chris held off the girlfriend, who was a slapping/scratching/kicking maniac. That’s not to throw shade on Chris. If I wasn’t there, he would’ve mixed it up with that asshole. In this case though, he didn’t have time: as soon as he told me about the fuck-face’s intentions, I immediately reacted.

Fast forward: I was kicking the dude’s ass, thoroughly. Until…the bouncer tackled me from behind, slamming me into the wall. A pair of broken glasses, a concussion, and a black eye was the end result. The next day, I called out of work sick; 43 years old and I’m making up some lame story about falling down and hitting my head, all to disguise the evidence of a bar fight.

But I’m proud of that moment, oddly. I’m proud because…I had Chris’ back. And I’ll always have his back. And he always knows that. If he didn’t know it before that night, he certainly knew it after.

That way that Chris must feel, knowing I’ll always be there for him? That’s how I feel with Nikki, times ten. And it’s a great feeling, because honestly, I’ve never felt that way before.

In my first marriage,—and I was married for damn close to thirty years—my ex never defended me. That’s not a slight against her; that’s just her personality. When people would tease me about stupid stuff, joking around or whatever, she tended to pile on. She probably thought it was funny and honestly, at the time, I really didn’t think anything of it (Most of the time, that is. But their were also those moments that hurt, where my deep-seated insecurities were woken up). Nikki, on the other hand? No way. In situations where my ex would join forces to tease me, my Nikki defends me. Without fail. You come at me and you better be prepared to come at the two of us. And the feeling I get from that is just so damn comforting. But the thing is, I didn’t even know that was something missing in my life. And now that I have it, I would never want to live without it.

Now with Nikki, I don’t expect her to ever get into a bar fight with me. But these days, you never know? And if a fight did break out, she’d be right there with me, throwing down. I’m confident of that. On occasion, I’ve seen that look on her face, that “don’t be messin’ with my Markie” look. She means business and she doesn’t want anyone fucking with her man.

Need more evidence, Dear Reader? Certainly:

  • Recently, a parent of one of the girls I coach in soccer complained about their daughter’s playing time. Now I love these parents and their daughter. It was just a misunderstanding and emotions ran a bit high. And truthfully, their complaint did come across a little heavy-handed. That’s when Nikki stepped in. She had a air about her that suggested she’d be slicing the parents’ achilles tendon with a box cutter. A little hyperbole, sure. But if you saw the look on her face and the tone of her voice, you’d agree I’m not overly exaggerating.
  • Besides knowing she’s there for me when conflicts arise, there’s also the support she provides when I’m struggling with my health, physical or mental:
    • When my migraines are raging with seizures, paralysis and debilitating pain, she’s there, like a registered nurse. At doctors appointments, she comes along and advocates on my behalf. And she’s constantly spending hours researching possible solutions and sharing advice she happens upon. She gets me medicine when I need it, rubs my head to ease the pain and she’s mindful of any symptoms and any triggers that might cause an attack (Which is also what’s super cool about our kids. They’re constantly on the lookout for potentially unsafe situations. “Mark, don’t look that way. Flashing lights,” is a frequent warning they provide. It’s so sweet, so kind, and I can feel how much our children love me. And that not-little thing makes me love them all the more.).
    • If I’m going through bouts of depression or anxiety, Nikki’s so fucking caring. Now I’m not a crier. And I’m not saying that as some badge of honor or that I’m a “real man” sorta thing. I’m just saying it’s not typically part of my nature. I have emotions and all that, but the fluid just doesn’t wanna come out of my eyes. That is, until…

Yes, Dickmoji. Before you continue, we have covered this before. The minutiae of tears and that they’re not actually coming outta my eyes, but instead they’re coming outta tear ducts, and blah didi-blah didi-blah blah blah. Give it a rest, dude. Your nitpicking bullshit is tiresome.

Surprised, Dickmoji? I’m just not in the mood for your shit today, K? Let me get back to my list, please.

  • As I was saying, my wife supports me when I’m in a bad mental state of mind:
    • Remember when I was describing that I’m not a crier, Dear Reader? Well…I’m not exactly sure that’s true any longer. In the past three months I’ve cried a half-dozen times. Not a little moisture in the corner of my eye, but sobbing, tears streaming down my face kinda cries. (I’ve got a lot of unresolved issues from my childhood, apparently.) And during those emotional breakdown times, Nikki held me and rocked me like a baby. I’m not sure I’ve ever felt so safe to allow myself to be that vulnerable before. It feels nice. It feels amazing.
  • She isn’t afraid to tell me when I’m being a tool or when my behaviors aren’t in my best interests. She isn’t a “Yes Man” that tells me what I want to hear; she tells me the truth and let’s me know if I’m going down a wrong path. And isn’t that what you want in life: a partner that isn’t afraid to be completely honest with you, regardless of the topic or circumstances?
  • I could go on and on, but there’s this “sweet spot” word count for blogs. And I don’t want to bore you or lose your attention, Dear Reader. If I haven’t done that already. 💤

Thanks, Dickmoji. Thankfully your opinion doesn’t matter, considering you’re an inanimate object.

Well you’re boring the full outta me, Dickmoji. Which is why I won’t be tolerating any more of your silly interruptions today. I have delete-key veto power. And I’m using it on your inanimate ass. Boom! 💣

The moral of this story? I love my wife. Simple as that. The reasons are complex, because she’s complex—because we’re complex. But at the end of the day? I want to shout it out to the world how lucky I am being in the presence of this stunningly amazing creature, this soul-enriching best friend of a partner. And I plan to live with gratitude. For this:

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