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You won’t believe
what my husband called me!

Heather ChristieLong ago when my husband and I first dated, he had sweet terms of endearment for me. Young love makes you say silly things.

Darling.

Sweetheart.

Honeybunches.

His friends teased him. But he could help himself! He was so in love. And I secretly savored these pet names, too. It was the first time I’d ever garnered this type of affection.

Fast-forward 27 years.

Now, it’s Hon. Or Honey on a good day.

The other night I reminded him of the cute names he used to call me and suggested that he might want to start calling me Rosebud, because I am so sweet, I smell good, and I look like a rose in a metaphorical sort of way.

“Rosebud?” He voice was shrill in disbelief. “How about Thorn?” he suggested. “You know, like a thorn in my side?”

Really?

“I like Rosebud better,” I said. “Plus it’s good for the kids to see and hear you talk sweetly to me.”

“No, you’re more like a thorn.” He paused. “But you’re pretty smart. How about Smarth?”

Smarth.

Just mash smart and thorn together and there you go — a lovely title for the mother of his children.

How would you like to be called a Smarth?

I’m a character in a Dr. Suess book.

Are you smart and like art?

Or is your norm being a thorn?

No matter. Now what. You’re not a Darth or a Garth.

Smile. You’re a Smarth!

I just Googled the Top Most Hated Pet Names For Women. Unbelievably, Smarth did not make the list. But it’s showing up in family group texts and being whispered in my ear as I fall asleep.

I guess sweet nothings like Darling, Sweetheart and Honeybunches are just that: sweet nothings (insubstantial or romantic words that are only meant to flatter, woo or seduce, according to www.yourdictionary.com). Now Smarth — there’s some meat behind that pet name.

Although, I’d argue Rosebud is a more accurate description of me.

Well, I can fight fire with fire. I’ve just informed my husband that I am now calling him Haireak (hairy + neat freak = Haireak — accent on the eak). He’s losing his hair and it’s growing in places where it’s not supposed to sprout (nose, ears, back), and he’s infuriatingly neat and expects everybody else to be as well.

At least I’m not calling him Bucky like his high school friends still do.

No, I think Haireak suits him perfectly.

His response?

“That’s okay my sweet darling Smarth.”

— Heather Christie

Heather Christie is a wife, mother, writer, real estate broker, knitter, cook, exercise freak and avid reader. When she’s not selling houses, she’s writing books and blogging about food, family and philosophy at www.HeatherChristieBooks.com. She can be found on Facebook at @heatherchristiebooks and on Twitter @heatherc_writes.

Reflections of Erma