Yes, I did. Lost her to a device. A rectangular nightmare given as a gift not long ago. Little did I know what would unfold. How smart and clever that little silver, flat box would prove to be. I really didn't see it coming. One day I've surprised my wife with a somewhat luxurious present, and the next day she's practically sleeping with the little man. Or woman -- not sure!
It all started out so slowly and innocently. She turned on the on-button and seemed fascinated with its capabilities. She jumped into all kinds of games like Scrabble and Bejeweled. And one called Candy Crush -- which heretofore I thought was either a porn star or an illegal drug. Turned out to be a drug all right -- legal and all -- but drug nonetheless.
That crafty little twerp. It looks so unpretentious all dressed in silver with seemingly so little to offer. But it sucks its victims in like a planet's gravitational pull. You're not aware of its presence, but you slowly succumb to its power, like the finest hypnotist seducing people with a subtle ticking clock or pendulum of some kind.
I watch her now, ever so closely. When I speak to her, I'm never sure if she hears me. Oh yes, she'll nod and crack a small smile when I talk. But mostly I'm getting brushed off. Like I'm invisible. Even when she looks over at me, I see the glaze in her eyes. She can't wait to get back to that sneaky, life-soaking monster. I think it has turned her into a Zombie of some kind. And I'm a little afraid of her. Or, more importantly, scared of the little box and its magic powers.
So I've decided to fight back. I'm not surrendering to that creepy, squared headed gearbox. No indeed. I'm fighting back with strategies I've created. Feel like I'm in a Star Wars saga, battling it out with the last evil Emperor, trying to save an innocent planet. In this case, my wife. Planet WifeGone.
I'll share a few ideas. These are thoughts in the making but I'm at war. That means strategies need to be developed over and over. I plan to win. I'm going to win. Here goes:
1. I plan to find ways every day to get her attention.
That tell her I love her. Today I snuck up on her and gave her a bear hug from behind (made sure I didn't grope her in the process). Just a simple love hug. Wrap your arms around that, you little silver freak. Oh, that's right -- you don't have any arms.
2. I'm asking her how she's doing.
And then I listen. I really do. No matter what she says, I just listen and try somehow to acknowledge her feelings and the importance of what she's telling me. Even when she talks about the greatest nail salon she found, or how surprised she is that Lamar and Khloe are struggling.
3. I do things that affirm her.
Frequently. Could be how she looks -- like, "You're the prettiest woman in the world." Or, "I love the way you smile." Or, "I really appreciate all you do for me and our family." I tell her she's "it" for me. And there will be no other "its."
4. I remind myself of the strengths I have to give her.
Such as my ability to reach out and love, give and even forgive. That I know how to protect her, comfort her and make her life simpler because of my own self-confidence and ability to pay attention to the needs and wants of others. Try doing that you little, tin god. Ha, ha!
5. And finally, I make her feel like a princess in and out of the bedroom.
I make her a priority in my schedule. Might be inviting her out to lunch, or taking her to a nice dinner. I hold her hand into the restaurant and pull out her chair for her when she goes to sit down. And in the bedroom? I'm a warm body capable of making her feel good. Not a cold, metal slab that just lies there and waits for her to press the right buttons before responding. Oh, no. I press her buttons first. Compete with that silver man.
So many lessons I'm learning as I fight once again for my lover's attention and companionship. There used to be so many things I did to woo her and tell her I love her when we dated -- the early years of our life together. But I let them go once we married, like a switch was flipped and I forgot to cherish her and pursue her.
And that crafty, square head saw the opening. She was ripe for seduction. But I'm fighting back, hard and furious. She'll never stop holding her iPad lover, stroking its face from side to side and smiling as if they have a friendship, everlasting. I just look away when they swoon together. And remind myself the war isn't over. I'm gaining ground. And I will prevail.
I will prevail.
Follow Doug and Leslie Gustafson on Twitter: www.twitter.com/authentictrue