Skip to main content

Frog & Bandit Forever

 So Matt and I had a Halloween party. Many of you have seen the pictures and wondered what the heck we were supposed to be. Yes, Matt’s mustache was impressive and sure the wedding dress I had on was maybe a little funny…but not a lot of people ‘got’ our costume. This did not matter to me…not one bit. You see – Matt wanted to dress up. Matt wanted to have a Halloween party.  You may not know, but Frog and Bandit are the clever (if a bit dirty) CB handles from Matt’s beloved movie, ‘Smokey & the Bandit’. Matt has loved the movie longer than I’ve loved Matt. He knows all the silly details, all the editing faux pas, all the songs, and a lot of the dialogue. The move is purely Matt – through and through. And once we decided to be Frog and Bandit…the wheels in his mind started spinning. Talking about how the costumes would come together was so much fun. 
We shopped online, we shopped thrift stores, and we bought pieces on eBay. Matt cared so much about all the details; his cowboy hat couldn’t be just any hat. It had to be felt. His shirt had to be red. He had to wear cowboy boots. And me? Well, he wanted me in a wedding dress. Never mind the fact that Frog spends the majority of the movie in a blue shirt with (awesome) bellbottoms…when she first comes on the scene, she’s in a wedding dress and he thought it would be so funny if I was in a dress. The hunt was on – and can you believe I actually found a 1970’s wedding dress and veil on eBay? Can you believe it was in perfect condition? Can you believe it fit me as though it were made for me?? Length and all. Almost as though…it were meant to be. We found Matt some awesome boots and ordered a replica BAN ONE Georgia license plate for the back of his chair. As the pieces came together, I could see how ticked he was. And oh, how my heart swelled. I was willing to spend any amount of money on these silly costumes. I was willing to do whatever he wanted to do to make the characters come alive in his eyes. And in the end, I loved…LOVED our costumes. While most of our friends and family did not quite get it at first…each time we would smile at each other and shrug it off. We knew. It was our inside costume. It was Matt…being Matt…only in a way I couldn’t have expected. I was so proud of him.

A week after our party we donned our costumes again for Halloween Karaoke (yes, he kept the mustache for a WEEK!). The bar we went to had a contest for best song/costume combination…and I knew I had to sing East Bound and Down – the theme song from the movie. He agreed to sit with me and let me sing the song, in front of a crowded bar of costume-clad strangers and a few of our closest friends. Again – I swelled with pride. We had a blast – despite the terrible karaoke. I was singing this ridiculously cheesy song (about trucking…with beer) to my husband, my Bandit…and I loved it.
A little while later though, I could see he was a little down. He was quiet and a little standoffish. I wasn’t sure why – we were laughing and having so much fun with our friends. He shrugged it off, but later confessed. He was a little sad. A woman had sung Cracklin’ Rosie (another of his favorite songs) and he started feeling sad that he couldn’t get up there and sing along. I was floored. When would he EVER have wanted to sing karaoke!?!? NEVER EVER.
But Matt is different now. He is a different person in a lot of ways, after his stroke. And he told me – that now – he just may have gotten up there to sing. He certainly felt like he would have, if he could have. I was a little taken aback. I couldn’t really fathom him in his former life up there singing his heart out to his favorite songs…but Matt is a different person today.
I was talking to my friend Emily about this today – discussing how I hadn’t really thought of it like that before. She said something that hit me like a ton of bricks…if Matt experienced a miracle healing…imagine who he would be. Tears fill my eyes even thinking of it now. The testimony he would have. The stories he would tell. The adventures he would have without a second thought of fear, or insecurity, or self-consciousness. Surely Matt is a different man than he was before his stroke – in so many wonderful and powerful and moving ways. Can you imagine a miracle healing for him?  To stand back and let him live life to the very fullest, in ways we wouldn’t dream of as regular able-bodied people? I simply wouldn’t be able to contain myself and the joy that would overflow.  But in the meantime, I am happy to come home to my Bandit every night. To his outstretched arms, his sparkling eyes, his adorable crooked smile, and his warm lap. 


Popular posts from this blog

Carrie Anne - The Beginning of the Story

So, I’ve been trying to sort out how to start this story. It’s been difficult to articulate. Difficult to pick which details to share, and which to hold close. But it’s a story too good, too beautiful, not to share – so here goes! When Matt and I first became parents, we thought our family was complete. We envisioned raising Ethan surrounded by loving friends and family – just the two of us. Given all that we had gone through to finally become parents, we felt content with just the one child. The most adorable boy in the whole wide world. Our Ethan was the apple of our eyes – the most amazing gift. We marveled at all of his accomplishments, soaked up all his love and personality, and celebrated the joy of parenthood at every exhausting, wonderful turn. Along the way, we’ve built a strong and loving relationship with Ethan’s birthmother. We visit yearly, and stay in close contact with pictures, emails, and texts. I have attempted to describe my feelings for her many times over the co…

Carrie - The Wait and the Big Arrival!

We arrived in Florida midday Saturday and made our way to the hospital where we met up with Ethan’s birthmother and her mother. We spent a long afternoon in the waiting room while the doctors and nurses put L through a myriad of tests. Finally, they verified the need to induce labor and proceeded to admit her to the hospital with plans to start the induction process Sunday. Exhausted, we left to check in at the hotel and ate what we thought may be our last supper before the baby came…but…. Sunday we arrived at the hospital mid-morning to see how things were progressing. The nurses gave L a medication to help start the dilation process around 12:30 PM…and told us it would likely take 12 hours for things to progress. We stepped out to enjoy the Florida sunshine for lunch for a bit, then settled in for the long haul at the hospital. We spent all afternoon, evening, and night together – holding watch over L as she slept. As we sat there, listening to the baby’s heart beating on the monit…

I may as well tell you...

I had a miscarriage. I’ve debated for weeks whether or not to acknowledge it publicly. It’s such a personal thing…and this is such a public medium. But a few months have gone by and I’m no closer to feeling ok about it and truly nothing else on my mind really compares, so here I am, letting the world in on my secret. Over the past few weeks I’ve found very little comfort in the fact that only a small handful of people know about the miscarriage. It became nearly unbearable this week, during all our wonderful family Christmas celebrations. Being surrounded by so many people who love me and support me and have no idea how my heart has been broken – it’s a lonely place to be. Not that I would want them all to bombard me with pity or questions or sad looks in their eyes – I realize I can’t have it both ways. But a little acknowledgement goes a long way and I simply can’t ignore or deny the fact that something major happened in my life and impacted me, impacts me still.
It was a warm, sunn…