People who suffer from strokes often have difficulty controlling their emotions. In the case of my husband Bill, when he hears something sad in a talking book he’s listening to or one of those forwarded e-mail messages he often gets from friends, he sobs uncontrollably. When he hears something funny, he laughs out loud. When he feels amorous, he puts his arm around me or takes my hand and expresses his affection. If I didn’t have a sense of humor, his sudden amorous outburst one day might have gotten him into trouble.
We were hosting my local writing group’s Christmas party several years ago. Bill was stretched out in his recliner, and another woman sat on the couch next to the chair. Because Bill is totally blind, he didn’t see that I wasn’t the one sitting next to him. He extended his hand to the other woman and said, “Hi honey.”
From the other side of the room, I saw and heard everything. “Oh honey, that’s Mary,” I said. “I’m clear across the room.”
Embarrassed, Mary stood up and offered to trade places with me. As I sat down next to Bill and took his hand, I said, “I turn my back for ten seconds, and you’re hitting on another woman.” Everyone laughed, including Bill.
The other woman never returned to our writers’ group meetings after that. A year or so later when I ran into her, I mentioned the incident and told her I hoped it hadn’t scared her away from our group. She assured me it hadn’t, that she’d just been too busy. We’re friends on Facebook and follow each other’s blogs. Now, when Bill and I are at a party, I always sit next to him and make sure he knows where I am at all times. He hasn’t hit on another woman since.