• Belinda Lane

Does your Childhood leave Traces?

September 11, 2020


There was this favorite restaurant I loved dining at on Sundays after church service. Even though an all you can eat shouldn’t be your favorite place every Sunday. I enjoyed this place because it takes your thoughts off the fact that you are eating alone every Sunday. I always would sit at a table where I could see out the window. Although there wasn’t enough of a view my creative mind kept me satisfied and sometimes I’d read a book.


This Sunday a couple entered and sat across from me, only cutting off a small portion of my view. The couple appeared to be in their last fifties. I observed the woman as she told the man what side to sit on. He was about to sit down, when she instructed him to go get his meal first. The waitress came and got their drink order.


After the man got back to the table, she went with her purse to the buffet. I realized this couple would replace my inner entertainment. When she returned to the table she reached and grabbed the man’s hand and said the grace. By now my thoughts were that there must be something wrong with this man from what I had picked up from her interaction with him. My heart went out to them.


In complete silence they ate for about five minutes, just as I was about to go back to my inner entertainment. She spoke! For what had to be about ten minutes she continued, whiles the man with his head down the entire time ate in silence. My heart went out to this woman after noticing their wedding rings, who at this stage in their lives was a caretaker, so it appeared.


Eventually, the woman got up and went back to the buffet. The owner of the restaurant stopped at their table and starts a conversation with the man. Much to my surprise, the man started talking and laughing. They talked about the upcoming citywide election. I listened as the husband expressed his point views of the public officials running for office. He spoke about whom he was voting for and why and his views about one of the gentleman running. Why this man would not be suitable for our city. To state that it amazed me is an understatement.


As the woman returned to the table, the owner remarked that her husband offered some significant points to consider regarding the approaching election. The woman responded, “I hope you aren’t listening to him and his foolishness”. I’m certain the owner and I mirrored the same facial expression. As the owner walked away, he was shaking his head, and I realized I was shaking my head.


Contrary to her remarks, I glanced down at my notes I had jotted down. What he said was noteworthy. His wife interrupted the man staring out the window, telling him to eat his food. When she had gotten up to go back to the buffet, I realized I was still feeling sorry for her, but my reason had changed.


"Ma’am would you like more tea; ma’am would you like more tea”? From the waitress tone, it was obvious she had asked me before. “No, thank you”. I would like to say I lost my appetite, but since the couple was now again eating in silence, I hurried to the buffet for another plate of food.


While getting my food the thought occurred to me that “your childhood can leave traces”. When I went back to my table, they both were still sitting in silence. Her husband glanced over at me, smiled and quickly turns back to his food. What just happened, I thought? The man told the woman he would get dessert, and she nodded.


After he left the table the woman looked over at me and smiled. “Let me tell you, you have got to keep men under your thumb these days, she declared now, grinning. My man does nothing without my approval.” Not even in my most ingenious imagination could I figure why this lady was telling me this. Since I was back into my creative self, I resolved it was safer to remain, so I didn’t respond.


Apparently okay to a degree with her behavior towards him, he seems satisfied. I realized she was not okay, period. Still, they seem to need each other. I realize I can’t convey as a man and maybe not even in behalf of a man, but what I’m assured of is that a man will be a man with or without you. The without you means he was most likely a man to someone else.


Exiting the parking lot, I wondered what the owner’s thoughts of today's show were, which I will call The Tale of Two Tables. The couple at the table physically, but not there inwardly and of me who showed up every Sunday and dined alone.


Once home, I went back to my thought of “does your childhood leave traces”? Did this woman leave her childhood broken and framed her future around it? What were the scenes in her mind when she looked at her husband as she talked to him? Was it of her dad who she formed a declaration within herself never to marry a man like him? Was it the conduct of her mother to never be like her? In this situation, what was it in her that would cause her to swap out her husband’s manhood and he let her?


Mostly, what transpired within him when it was time for him to walk into manhood? Exactly where did he learn or not get in his youth that lead to him to be under her thumb, as she described their marriage? To be told when to go to the buffet bar and it’s normal to call him a fool in the presence of another man. As a man, you just turn and look out the window?


Yet, what had taken place that as a woman you would give up feeling protected by her man? In addition, what did you pick up and bring with you into your marriage, that it was okay to disrespect your husband and consider its normal? Again, what words enthused into your ears that would cause you to turn to a perfect stranger and boast about maintaining control over your man? What did you both get that established this as okay?


Genuine speaking, I wish to be clear I’m speaking about a healthy relationship. Men that women perceive it is healthy to share her heart with and vice versus. The man that understands the strength of a woman and she knows his strength as they weather life’s storms, holding on to each other. As life unfolds you both develop together.


A life some of our parents didn’t know how to model out for us, yet we modelled out what we learned from them. Often we display through our behavior a repeat of their lives. We ignore once on our own to seek alternative ways to be whole. Instead, we establish our history on the bedrock of someone else’s behavior and note it as typical.


Finally ready for bed, I decided it was time to dismiss the scene of the couple, but realized my mind demanded to ask me one last question. What had I seen and determined that I had taken with me to cause this empty place in life? Still having Sunday meals alone? I know I should be in love by now!



All Stories and Poetry is originally mine and has Copyrights!

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