Friday, January 16, 2009
The Change I Need
Right around January 20th, 2009, when Senator Obama becomes President Obama, a momentous transition of power is going to take place in my home. My husband of 25 years, the father of my two children, will return home after a two and a half year sabbatical from marriage and fatherhood.
For the first few weeks in the White House, President Obama will be groping in the dark as he waddles around in the White House in his jammies. My husband's situation exactly: he is going to be looking for the light to our bathroom outside the bathroom the way it has been in his Bangalore, India, home for the last 24 months.
While Obama's going to take calls in the 1000 square foot Oval Office, the new, upgraded love of my life will, once again, share a 100 square foot rectangular office with his First (and Only) Lady.
While our new commander-in-chief will not have to fret about where his next washed underwear comes from, my old commander-in-chief will soon be fuming when he's down to his last fruit from the loom. I hope my husband, like Mr. President, will not air his dirty linen in public after he debriefs home affairs? And while Rahm Emanuel's fixing things up around the White House, my improved husband, Version 2.5, will be meddling with our now somewhat rickety garage door - hopefully, with a User Manual in hand.
Days after his arrival in our house, we'll have a formal transfer of power: like the President, my husband will sign his name, again and again, on paper. In White House parlance, this is called signing the bills. But in our tight house, we call it being in charge of doing the bills.
Obama, lucky man, may have a Chief of Staff. My husband, on the other hand, is already showing how cheap of staff he is: the times are tough, he says. Downsize, honey, let our housekeeper come to clean once in two weeks. Hey, am I, like Michelle, asking for a whole Chef? Where's the justice, huh?
If you haven't lived with your husband for years, I tell you it's not that easy to live with one again. The problem is, just like Presidents, spouses change too. For once, darling, let's sit down and talk about the Change I Need.
Posted by Kalpana Mohan