Az the husband makes me a cup of coffee every morning. He has done this for fifteen years. When we were first married, we both took our wedding rings off at night, and our morning ritual was to slip them on each other's fingers in the morning, asking "Will you marry me?" It was sweet, but too maudlin to last. The necessities and habits of daily life create their own rituals, and ours became the cup of coffee he brought to my bed every morning before he left for work. He would lean over and kiss me and say, "Coffee's here. I'm going to work. I love you."
A few months ago I switched to green tea (supposedly it boosts the immune system), but the ritual is the same. The kiss, the goodbye, the steaming cup beside the bed. He leaves for work very early, and he is more dependable for me than an alarm clock. Az does not come with a snooze button, and he is not fooled when I murmur, "I'm awake" from the depths of the bed. I must sit straight up and sip my tea before he believes me. He is the first domino that sets off the chain reaction of a school morning. Without him, we would all be late.
Our life right now is chaotic and stressful. We don't have enough money. We are trying to fix up the house. And job searches are a misery for anybody. But the cup of coffee is still there every morning, even if we've argued the night before. The kiss still gently meets my cheek, before I'm even fully awake. A cup of tea costs pennies, but the life behind it is worth the world.