It was good to read all your comments and realize I keep good company with lots of other Non-Listeners. The first thing a Non-Listener needs to do is listen. And I was determined to do just that.
My daughter celebrated her birthday last weekend with, among other things, an ice cream cake. Not just any ice cream cake but a rainbow sherbet cake, decorated with orange roses and frosted in her favorite colors of aqua blue with red trim.
Are you done making gagging noises? Good. Now you can finish reading this post.
Throughout the weekend my husband made little comments about our daughter's cake.
The comments focused on, for example, his deep and abiding fondness for the genre of ice cream cakes. Or how the best flavor for ice cream cake is chocolate chip mint. He made these comments and expected to be ignored. Not just because his wife is a Non-Listener but because ice cream cake has a sordid history in our household.
An ice cream cake from Baskin & Robbins was the trigger to our very first fight. You know the kind, where one innocuous act leads to seven hours of tearful conversation, handwringing and questioning whether or not this relationship is really going to work out. It was our first Valentine's Day and my husband (then boyfriend) showed up carrying a big box.
"Happy Valentine's Day," he said handing me the box.
"Ice cream cake!" I still remember the tone of his voice. He was so very excited!
I opened the box and discovered that, yes, it was true. It contained an enormous sheet of ice cream cake.
"So what flavor is it?" I asked as I inspected the box looking for some deeper meaning.
"Chocolate chip mint." His eyes held the manic glaze that I now recognize as his Pavlovian response to all forms and shapes of ice cream.
"Did you have it made specially?"
"No, no. I just stopped by after work and picked it up."
"Is there a card?"
"Oh yeah, I forgot to get a card. But the cake has hearts on it."
There you have it. My first Valentine's Day gift from my husband was an enormous ice cream cake in his favorite flavor with no card. The conversation went downhill from there. I think the low point was when he realized there would be NO ice cream cake served that evening.
After two kids and thirteen years of marriage, it seemed like the perfect time to come full circle and present him with his very own ice cream cake on Valentine's Day. Although, I did tweak the gift slightly. Instead of my favorite flavor I made sure to get his. I think this is a step in the right direction for an avowed Non-Listener.