Friday, April 17, 2009


You know how preparing for a wedding can put a relationship in a pressure cooker? If you don't, take my word for it.

Back at the end of March, Ken and I had a difference of opinion. There were some WORDS and some hurt feelings. In the final analysis, Ken decided that I was right to be angry with him because of something he said or did - I don't even remember now - so he made me an offer I've always refused.

"Hit me!" he said. "Just give me a good smack. It'll make us both feel better, and then we'll be even again."

In the past I've always said that it was a silly idea and I couldn't possibly. But this time, I was pretty ticked off, so I went ahead and hit him. Not in the face! Good grief - do you think I'm that vicious? I pummeled his sides with the palms of my hands, smack-'em-up style, with what I estimated to be moderate force. He didn't even say "ow". There were no marks, no bruises.

A couple of days later, when he complained that his ribs hurt, I assumed that he had pulled a muscle coughing. (His asthma's been acting up in the past few weeks, possibly from pre-wedding stress.) His ribs hurt quite badly for a couple of days, and then it started to ease up, relatively speaking. I say "relatively" because he hadn't found time to get to the doctor for his asthma, and all the coughing kept re-aggravating his injury.

Last week he finally went to the doctor. And was sent immediately to the x-ray department. Although we haven't gotten the official results back yet, the doctor seemed to think that he has at least one cracked rib. Not from coughing.



When Ken told me that I had broken his ribs, I felt sick. How could it be true? I'm undeniably a featherweight weakling. My arms are so skinny that I have to get links taken out of my bracelets so they'll stay on my weeny wrists. An eight-year-old once dead-lifted me clean off my feet. A GIRL eight-year-old! I can't open jars by myself! How could I have broken Ken?

I sank to the floor and cried bitter tears of regret. How could I do this to us just before our wedding? On the day of the x-rays, because he'd been forced to contort his body to get good angles for the x-ray tech, he was in severe pain. Standing hurt. Driving hurt. Everything hurt. I freaked out. That freaked him out.

With all the stress his airways squeezed shut even more, and he launched into the worst coughing fit I'd ever heard since we both got mold-poisoning from a contaminated humidifier. In between gasping for breath and barking coughs, he moaned in pain. Every groan and wheeze was like a knife in my heart.

Neither of us slept much that night. That was Tuesday.

Since then, things have gotten a lot better all around. Ken is on stronger asthma medication, which is bringing his breathing back under control. And the pain which resulted from his contortions in the x-ray machine has diminished considerably. He's still in pain, but it's no longer excruciating.

A doctor explained to us that ribs have some weak points, and hitting them at the wrong angle can cause a break without much force. I guess we just had bad luck.

But in the final analysis, this whole fiasco has had a good result. It's brought Ken and I closer together. This is the worst thing I've ever done to him, intentional or unintentional, and he forgave me without any hesitation. In fact, his exact words were "It's not your fault. There's nothing to forgive."

Technically that might be true, but there are a lot of people who would feel justified holding a grudge even if it was entirely an accident.

On this blog I have shared the good news when Ken brings me flowers, or showers me with gifts, or cooks me a gourmet dinner. But nothing he's ever done for me or given me has been as precious a gift as this instantaneous, complete, unconditional, and unquestioned forgiveness. Even as he was doubled over in pain, almost unable to breathe, he forgave me. It's a blessing beyond compare.

Ken will still be a bit sore on our wedding day, but if we're sticking together in sickness and in health, what better way to prove it? And if anyone feels that's not a good enough excuse, I'll just tell them I had to beat him up and drug him to get him up the aisle.

In closing, consider this a warning. Obviously I'm a raging angerball, endowed with supernatural strength. So watch what you say in the comments, or I'll find out where you live and beat you up next! Grrrrrrr....


Anonymous said...


I know the guilt of hurting someone you don't mean to hurt and not being able to say you're sorry enough. It's nice to receive that forgiveness, even if the other person doesn't think twice about the incident, doesn't it?

Shoulders, arms, buttocks, thighs ... meatier parts. Safe for playful swatting. :)

God bless, good luck on Wedding Day!

Anonymous said...

Wow Ken sounds like a saint. Most people would be totally angry about that.

With warm weather coming up and all. He'll be stuck sitting around for the next month or so. Yet he still forgives?

What a great guy. You're marrying the right one.

wigsf said...

^ I think that's the first time I've ever seen darcknyt comment on a Blogger blog.


You've never made me laugh harder than you did with this post. Maybe me finding this funny makes me a monster. If so, I don't care. I nearly wet myself. If I was drinking something right now, I'm sure it would have come out my nose.

I've had a bruised rib from a rough game of pile-on in the schoolyard. That hurt. I've had a cigarette put out on me once. That hurt too. I've been pepper-sprayed. That hurt and sucked. Can't say I've ever been beaten up by a woman though. I've seen that look from a woman that wanted to, that's for sure. I guess I've just been lucky to have never pissed you off.

Cheers to you and Ken, and please, take it easy on him on the wedding night.

SoMi's Nilsa said...

I laughed. I cried. I laughed all over again. What an incredible story. Some might suggest Ken got what he asked for (both in the broken ribs and marrying you - for better or worse as they say!). If anything, this just means you'll have to slow down a bit in the days leading up to your wedding, which I think all brides and grooms really should do (though most don't)!

Claire said...

Oh man, what a tale!


Kate said...

It's interesting, the things that bring us closer to one another.

Warped Mind of Ron said...

LOL... Now Ken knows not to piss you off :) Just take it easy on him during the honeymoon or you'll kill him.

NicoleB said...

Grin, don't feel too bad.
Hubby and I are both hot headed thick heads.
No, there's no domestic violence, but some would call our early days remote control throwing and almost breaking a knuckle that.
Or fun fights that can turn into someone getting hurt, mostly hubby because he doesn't listen when I tell him, he should better stop ;)
Nothing as harsh as cracked ribs yet, but yeah, I guess you have supernatural strength ;)

NicoleB said...

Why on earth would he be mad?
Hes actually asked for it, no?!

Sparkling Red said...

Darcknyt: Yeah, a sound spanking would probably have been a much better idea. Next time I'll just put him over my knee when I want to teach him a lesson.

Unsigned: Well, he's not quite a saint. However, publicly I only discuss his good points. The other stuff is best left between the two of us. That being said, he's pretty darn awesome!

WIGSF: Yup, you're a monster. But so am I. We can be monsters together. I'll be Grover and you can be the Cookie Monster.

Nilsa: I bet he'll think twice before inviting anyone else to hit him! Next time he'll probably offer a pillow if someone needs something to pound on. And yeah, we're taking it easy, more or less. :-)

Claire: Indeed.

Kate: It's bizarre. Most bad things eventually turn out to have a silver lining, if you wait long enough.

Ron: I'll try to restrain myself. ;-)

Nicole: Wow, seriously? Thanks for sharing that. It helps to know that we're not the only two hot-heads who've gotten ourselves into trouble. :-)

mythopolis said...

Great story! I could picture the whole incident. Those little weeny arms of yours can do some serious damage! I am having empathetic pain for Ken, try to be gentle with him on your wedding day!
And please, don't be mad at me, I have two hungry children and a very sickly wife..... : )

Scarlet said...

Wow! You're a badass! I'm thin too and I love this story! I love the forgiveness part. What a great guy.

sallymandy said...

Oh, bless your heart. I can hear/feel your regret. I'm sorry! On the other hand, he did invite it!

I don't know if there's any connection, but I was diagnosed this winter with a bruised rib condition from coughing too much. It hurt a lot.

My hubby once broke his aunt's ribs by hugging her too hard.'re not alone. I hope your preparations are coming along well. So happy for you in your upcoming wedding.

Thanks for the visit to my blog.

QueenOfRelationships said...

Aw, it's was a total "oops" moment. He did say it was okay to hit'em. :) At least he's okay. :)

Karen said...

I can imagine that guilt. LOL. Silly things happen. I don't know if you remember the story about when my dad shot my mom. LOL. Silly accidents. Of course he wasn't mad.

LL Cool Joe said...

I think it's very brave of you to tell this story.

Ken, is a great guy.

I think we've all done stupid things we regret in life. Mind you, I've never broken someones ribs!

Sparkling Red said...

Mythopolis: Thanks! I find consolation in the fact that a calamity can always be translated into a good story. That's my favourite kind of alchemy.

Scarlet: Small and thin doesn't have to mean we're not dangerous. People get hurt by small things all the time, like knives, and bullets, and doses of arsenic. ;-)

SallyMandy: Since I first read your comment a couple of days ago I've thought about it a lot. I take comfort in the fact that I'm not the only accidental rib-breaker. Something else for me to keep in mind: don't hug too hard. :-)

QueenofRelationships: He has promised me that he'll never invite anyone to hit him again. Maybe we'll get a tackle dummy as a stand-in.

Karen: I think you did tell that story, and yet when you mention it, it's still shocking. Accidents do indeed happen. Thank goodness we can forgive each other.

LL Cool Joe: Thanks! I was scared to tell anyone at first. But then I found that confessing had a healing element, so I started telling everyone. It's been a real learning experience.

San said...

Now you've got me flinching, Spark. Please. Do not hit me. Please. Do not hit me.

Seriously, this is quite a sweet post. I agree. This is Ken's best gift to you yet. Yet. Wonder what else he has up his sleeves.