A Moment of Reflection

We had just finished painting the living room, and my husband was removing the painter’s tape from the walls.

“I’ll have to get the paint out and touch up this area,” he said.

I took a look at the area he was referring to and saw that a sizable section of paint had come off with the tape.

“Was that my fault?” I asked. ” Did I mess up when I put the tape on it?”

“No, it’s not your fault,” my husband replied. “It’s your guilt.”

“My guilt? What do you mean?”

“You always think everything is your fault.” My husband chuckled. “You’ve always been like that.”

“Guess that’s because of my father,” I said. “Nothing was ever his fault, so I figured it must be my fault.”

“That was the engineer in him,” my husband said. “He’d be laughing right now if he were still alive.”

“And he never apologized,” I added. “My mother sure knew that side of him.”

We both were quiet for a moment, remembering my parents, whom we loved dearly.

My husband broke the silence. “Your mother sure got a lot of nice clothes out of it, though.”

About Coming East

I am a writer, wife, mother, and grandmother who thinks you're never too old until you're dead. My inspiration is Grandma Moses who became a successful artist in her late 70's. If I don't do something pretty soon, though, I'll have to find someone older for inspiration.
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12 Responses to A Moment of Reflection

  1. pattisj says:

    George is a trip! Is he perfecting his comedy routine for when he retires from his “real” job?

  2. dorannrule says:

    Great post Susan! Guilt plagues me and my brother too. We got it from our Mom – along with worry.

  3. this was a touching post… we are getting ready to paint (hopefully) in a couple of weeks. I have always been the only one who has painted, this will be our first joint painting venture. I hope it goes as smoothly as you have described yours. So good to read your writing. Wonderfully heartfelt piece. DAF

    • Coming East says:

      Thank you, DAF. We’ve been painting together for decades. It didn’t always go smoothly in our early years. My husband was always so particular. He’s mellowed a ton, and now I love painting with him. Hope your project turns out great.

  4. notquiteold says:

    I’ve always believed that a little guilt goes a long way. I like to be extravagant in my forgiveness of my husband – then he REALLY owes me!

  5. What a great, honest post! My father NEVER apologized either, for anything. His ‘take’ on things was this: “If I didn’t mean to hurt you/your feelings then I have nothing to apologize for.” And since he ‘believed’ he never did anything ‘wrong’, nothing was ever his ‘fault’ (leaving, like you, the rest of us feeling like we had to take the blame). How much better our growing up years would have been, I think, if he’d just learned to say “I’m sorry” once in a while!

  6. suzicate says:

    Your husband is funny! Still, it made me think….”things” only soothe the heart temporarily, and then again sometimes that’s all we need because life goes on.

    • Coming East says:

      I like what you said, Suzicate. I’m sure there were many times my mother would have loved an apology instead of a new outfit. But the clothes were like an apology–without my dad having to admit any guilt.

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