The Pact

by Jeanette Levellie

“Let’s make a pact,” suggested Kev on one of our frequent walks, where we discuss everything and nothing.

“What kind of pact did you have in mind?” I cautiously asked. A pact where we agree to not eat desserts on weekdays or not talk negatively from five to seven p.m., I can handle. But don’t ask me to quit overreacting, keep my house sparkling clean, or pass up a sale on dark chocolate. I’ll let you down.

“Let’s agree that we will always handle issues that arise in a mature manner,” he answered. His face was serious when he said it, too.

My knees buckled as I guffawed. “Kevin, in spite of our Valentine’s Day wedding thirty years ago, we have rarely handled things in a mature manner. What preposterous idea makes you think we can start now?” He must have agreed, because he hee-hawed along with me. We stood in the road and roared like two preschoolers discovering their dad’s underwear drawer.

Please don’t misunderstand: we are not idiots. We raised two responsible adults, we both hold down decent jobs, and most days we keep our sanity in this crazy world. We have, however, had our share of not handling situations in mature ways.

Like the time I got mad during an argument, and slammed the lid of the cookie jar down, breaking it beyond repair. Did I mention that it was my favorite cookie jar?

Or the day Kevin asked me to navigate him to a new friend’s house in Los Angeles, and becoming impatient, he grabbed the map from my hand. I should say he tried to grab it. I was so irate with him for implying I didn’t know how to read a map, I refused to let go. Two adults, one a preacher, the other a Christian School teacher, wrestling with a map in the front seat. Aha.

My favorite fight occurred on a Sunday night. I was enjoying the song service, and snuggled next to Kev as we harmonized on “Learning to Lean.” Kevin can harmonize with bullfrogs; he has an excellent ear for chords. But, when he adds notes where they aren’t written, and does ‘do-bop’s in my ear as I am worshiping, I become as hot as a waffle iron on a Saturday morning.

“Will you please quit singing in my ear? It’s bugging me,” I whisper, trying not to disrupt those around us. Kevin grins like he’s five and has just caught his first fish. Now I’ve given him exactly what he wants: the satisfaction of knowing he’s stolen my composure. On the next song, he continues his musical torture by making up stupid words to the song’s tune and breathing them in my ear. That’s when I lose it.

Whap! Slap! Sock! on Kevin’s upper arm.  “Stop it right now!” I mutter, my voice growling, veins bulging out of my neck. Not even noticing my wimpy attempts at slaps, Kevin is in husband heaven, blatantly laughing. The older couple behind us could not be more delighted. To witness the preacher’s wife beating up the preacher during Sunday evening service is a rare treat, indeed.

So much for our “Maturity From Now On” pacts. At least our brouhahas serve as entertainment for our congregation. Happy Valentine's Day!




  1. Ahahaha! Too cute. My husband and I don't fight, ever really. However, he LOVES to annoy me, or try to. Occasionally, he'll irritate me enough to leave the room which of course makes him want to cuddle. Something he knows I can't resist.

  2. April: Aha. They figure out our buttons pretty quidkly, don't they? Ya gotta love 'em, though.

  3. ROFL! Too cute. I think we figured out we'd grown up when we couldn't fight without laughing at ourselves. Happy anniversary, by the way!

  4. You have no idea how much this relieves the rest of your 'congregation,' this 'parishioner' included. Love it! Now, if you could explain why it is that men love to provoke and stir things up, you'd have my vote for that one Peace Prize. My crowd uses burping and other - um, noises to get me going.

    Waving and laughing,


  5. Marriage pacts are an exercise in futility and probably the only exercise I get. A sense of humor, on the other hand, is a necessity. I'm sure God laughs at our attempts at "perfect" marriages all the time!
    Next time...breathe in his ear!

  6. My husband is a wonderful singer and he graciously allows me the opportunity to try and sing along. I do try to 'hide' under his voice for the benefit of those around us.

  7. Niki: I'm so glad you've grown up. You are about the only ones I know who have!

    Rhonda: It's a power thing. If they can get us swinging from vines and screeching, it makes them feel like Tarzan. That's my best guess.

    Trash Talk: I'll remember that hint.

    Sally: How kind of him. Mine is more of a ham.

  8. Jeanette:
    This is too funny. As we grow older we grow mellower, or we should.

  9. Dear Quiet: Well, some mellow, and some bellow. I'm glad you are amused by our brouhahas!

  10. Over from your other blog, Jeanette, and I found this delightful!


  11. Why, thank you, Pearl! I found your blog full of fun as well.

  12. I hate the ones where I argue vehemently and at length about something miniscule (the rules to a board game!) only to find out later on that I was *ahem* judgementally challenged in my point of view. Ya know, eating crow is easier if you season liberally with laughter.

  13. We just can't muster up the negative energy to fight, and have never had a real one in all of our 51 years! Oh, we nag occasionally, but we tend to talk things out until we either settle the situation or agree to disagree. Any bantering just ends up in laughter. I guess we're just not fighters at heart. :) Cute article, Jenn.


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