Marriage and Fire Alarms

Marriage and Fire Alarms

The Context:
We heat our house by wood-burning stove. It’s old-fashioned, but we like it. And it suits our pocketbooks. Tonight, we put a fire in, and our smoke alarm went off. Okay. Odd. Closed the dampeners, and realized that the fan we have blowing the air away from the stove was actually turned toward the smoke alarm.

No problemo. Easy fix. When we installed the stove, we learned what to look for, and I probably went a tad overboard by installing no fewer than TEN smoke alarms in our home. I tend to prepare for the worst-case scenario, it’s my coping mechanism.

Now, we didn’t use the stove much last year. It was a mild winter, and we do have and use our furnace on occasion. Last week, our house heater/fan stopped working. We’re planning on fixing it, but since we have the wood stove, and a full cord of firewood, it’s not an emergency situation, and it’s not really been COLD-cold yet. We’re from Alaska, we know the difference, and the house is insulated fairly well.

The Warning:
We had dinner. The kids and I crashed. We were beat. It was a big day.
Hubby decided to stay up and watch a movie.
So about 2 am, the fire alarm goes off.
I pelt down the hallway and there’s my hubby, making sure that we have a nicely heated home tonight. He’s very good at taking care of us.

Only… the fire alarm is going off.
I go outside to check the chimney. Nothing’s a-flame, but it’s looking a bit “glowy”…does it look glowy to you? I ask. I check the attic. Cold. Dry. No fire there. Still. A bit intense. Maybe I am over-reacting. Maybe.
Hubby closes the dampeners. He shrugs and goes to bed. He’s in there, peacefully snoring away. At rest. relaxed. In minutes.

He’s solved the problem. He’s 100% chill.
Meanwhile, I’m sitting here, keeping us all ALIVE.
Now, don’t panic along with me- NOTHING IS ON FIRE

At this point, two hours later? There are only coals.
I’ve checked the roof three times in three hours. NOTHING.
Everything’s fine. But yeah. Sleep? NOT a thing. I’m WIDE awake.

Now, other than our OBVIOUS need for someone to sweep the chimney?
How does this relate to marriage?

Because it’s got ebb and flow. We are here to support one another. We each tend to bring balance to one another. One reacts, the other acts. I’ll be completely chill about something, and he’ll be completely stressed. Or, like with the smoke alarm? He’s chill. It’s all good, and I’m sitting here panicking.

This is marriage, in a nutshell. Teamwork. Balance. Give-Take
React-Act. Ebb-Flow. I’m so thankful we can both balance one another.


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