Thursday, January 26, 2012

Truth in Advertising

It's time to 'fess up. Things are not always so simple in my simple life world.


One of the Knitwits tonight said that my blog doesn't match my person. She said my blog makes my life seem so peaceful and simple and not dramatic. And everything sounds hunky-dory. Because from where she sits, my life isn't like that.


The Knitwits get to hear most of the {not} simple stuff that happens. My blog readers get sheltered from that. Who wants to read about someone else's drama? That's what soap operas are for. try to find things that make me happy every day. I think if you look for happy things, you'll find them. And I tend to blog about those things that make me happy.


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I want my life to be peaceful, and calm, and full of gentleness and thoughtfulness. I want to focus on more important things, like helping other people and serving my God. I'm trying to find ways to give back some of what we've been blessed with. 


Key word? Trying. That's why my blog description says, "Trying to live a simple life in a not-so-simple world." 


But sometimes life isn't so calm, is it? And things don't always run smoothly and effortlessly. 


Like eating.  Rapid change of subject but it will all make sense.


Eating involves food planning, and shopping, and preparation, and cooking. That is a whole lot of time for something that lasts about fifteen minutes each night. And I'm tired of spending so much time on eating. 


I honestly don't care what I eat for dinner. I'm happy with a bowl of cereal. Or an egg with toast.


But the Man?


Not so much. He likes a complete meal most nights. And that's where we're running into a difference of opinion.


Which is NOT making me calm. Or happy.
Now that our children are older, they are not home for dinner a lot. So our traditional family meal time seems to have gone by the wayside. They are busy working and going to school, or out with friends, but wherever they are, most nights they are not home for dinner. Our table of five has decreased.

Two down.

Mom doesn't really care what we eat for dinner. She's told me she's happy with a peanut butter sandwich.

Three down.

I don't care what we eat for dinner anymore. I'm happy with a peanut butter sandwich.

Four down.

Uh-oh. Things aren't looking good for the Man.

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So J and I are out shopping last week and we are way on the other side of the big city right around dinner time. I called the Man to let him know that we probably wouldn't make it home for dinner since we still had to get through the big city to get home and it was rush hour. And since it was a Knitwits knitting night, I wouldn't eat dinner anyway since we have such yummy snacks at class.

"Well, what's for supper?" the Man asked.

"I don't know. I haven't really thought about it," I replied. Remembering we had leftover pasta and salad in the refrigerator, I mentioned it to the Man. My mind was focused on the upcoming traffic jam I was sure we would be sitting in shortly.

"Oh." He didn't seem too enthusiastic about that choice.

"Well, what else is there?" he asked.

"I don't know. Look in the freezer and see what's there." I hurry across the street and get in the car. I'm starting to get a tad bit testy because I gave him a viable option for dinner and he opted out. Now I'm supposed to come up with another option?

"Just have the pasta," I said.

"Forget it. I'll figure something out," he said. And then hung up on me a bit abruptly.

J and I started for home. After about ten minutes on the highway, I told him to call his dad and ask if he wanted me to pick up the makings for tacos. I was pretty sure I would have enough time to brown some ground beef before knitting.

Let's just say that conversation didn't go so well. This is what I heard from my end of the car.

"Dad, Mom wants to know if you want us to stop and pick up taco fixings for supper?"

He listens to the Man.

"Are you going there now?"

More listening.

"Well, if you're already going to the grocery store, why don't YOU pick up taco fixings?" 

Uh-oh. I know this is not going to go over well so I make the hand across the throat sign to try and stop him from this train of thinking. Too late. His mouth is already moving.

"There's no point in Mom and I stopping if you're already going there."

He looks at the phone and says, "He hung up on me."

Gee, who could see that one coming?

~~~~~~~~~~

When I get home the Man and I have a few words for each other. He tells me that his mom used to cook dinner every night when he was younger. I tell him that his mom didn't work during that time. He tells me that since I had the day off, he expected me to cook a meal. I tell him that even though I wasn't at work, I had other things to do and wasn't home all day. 

Sometimes we work and don't get paid for it.

It wasn't a very pretty scene. I could feel myself getting more and more upset and knew I was going to lash out if we didn't back off immediately. 

It's a good thing Sissy showed up to take me to knitting.
Fast forward a few days. And we have almost the same scenario unfolding.

This time it's K and I out shopping. She needed something for school and had to have it NOW.

So we went off to the mall right around dinner time.

After striking out at the first store, we had to go to a second store to get what she needed. Now I decide I better call the Man and let him know to go ahead and eat without us.

"Well, what's for supper?" he asked. 

"Cook the scallops, throw a couple potatoes in the microwave and fix a salad," I told him.

"There's not enough scallops," he told me. "What else can we have?"

"I DON'T KNOW!" I may have said, rather heatedly.

And we hung up. On each other.

~~~~~~~~~~

I got home about one minute before he did. And I realized there weren't enough scallops. Drat.

Just as I'm trying to figure out what to have instead, the Man walks in.

"You're right, there's not enough scallops," I said to him.

"I know. What are you going to do?" I looked at him, trying to figure out if he was being serious or not. 

What am I going to do? Why do I have to do anything? Why can't he do something?

"I'm going to the store to BUY MORE SCALLOPS." And I stomped out of the house.

When I got home, I flung the three bags of meat I had bought on the counter. Scallops, a pork roast, meatloaf mix, and two chickens. By golly, if he wanted dinner choices, he was going  to have them.

And then it went south. 

~~~~~~~~~~

What came out of our discussion? I'm not cooking any more. Unless I feel like it. 

And I'm not planning meals anymore. 

Most likely, I'll still do the grocery shopping.

But eating is now the Man's responsibility. Because I don't care what I eat for dinner. And he does.
To be honest, I'm not happy with myself. 

I should have been more gentle, more kind. I really thought he understood where I was coming from after the first discussion.

But he didn't. And the second discussion was loud and dramatic and everything that I'm starting to dislike about this {not} simple matter.

We're going to have to figure this out. It's not fair for him to do it all. But it's not fair for me to do it all, either.

As far as my attitude, let's just say I'm not perfect. 

Just forgiven.

~~~~~~~~~~

So there it is. A little bit of the {not} simple things that happen in my world. 

What can I say? I'm a work in progress. And I'm working toward finding more peace and calm and stillness in my life. 

Now I'm going to find something that makes me happy.

7 comments:

  1. In the blissful midst that is your blog, thank you for sharing a snippet of your reality! I can completely understand the need to keep your blog a place of positivity, idealism even, like your own sacred space to allow your mind to focus in on all that you hold dear... to meditate on your values and the love that fuels our lives.

    My family often joke about the perfect version of myself that I portray on my own blog, but I tell them that it's actually me just portraying a version of myself that I aspire to be more like!

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  2. Love love this story. Real life. It's all about expectations isn't it? We sometimes have the same discussions, but not about cooking. I do love to cook, but on work nights? Uh-uh. It's "fend for yourself" nights. :)
    Our discussions usually revolve around cleaning. I am ok if things are a little (or more) out of place for longer than J is. Sometimes if I hold out long enough, he does it!!! (hee hee). But so much comes from our family of origin..what is "SUPPOSED" to be!! But we all have an idea of what is right or ok...the tough part is compromising..esp at my old age :)

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  3. @Elisalex - you said it perfectly...it's a version of myself that I aspire to be. i would rather post the positive than the negative and keep this blog {simple} and not messy. Because life gets messy, doesn't it? And who wants to read other people's messes? Thank you for your kind words and for lifting me up today....you made me smile =]

    @Annie - yes, compromising is hard. you would think we would be quite good at it after so many years of marriage, wouldn't you? What I didn't expect was how much I would change my expectations....peanut butter sandwich for dinner? I never would have believed it! But, right now, I'm fine with that =] Thanks for sharing. I'm so glad that there are others who feel these things too!

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  4. Glad to know even people with years of experience go through the same things as newlyweds! Although, our disagreements are definitely not food related as neither one of us would go without a fairly elaborate meal :). I'm going to second my mom that it is usually about cleaning...me on the "more quickly is better" side & D with my mom in the idea that if he doesn't do it for long enough... i will. *sigh*

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  5. @Lyndsay - I used to prepare elaborate meals for years, though not as elaborate as yours, I'm sure! I'm just tired of doing it. For now. Not forever. As far as cleaning, I have to say that's usually not an issue for us! I do most of the cleaning around the house but the Man shares bathroom cleaning with me. We each do our own laundry and he washes joint stuff, like sheets, towels, etc and I fold it. Usually. It works for us.

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  6. I'm happy with a PB&J anytime. It's fast & easy. No prep time. No cleanup time. It makes me mad when I spend 2 hours making dinner and nobody has the courtesy to let me know they aren't eating at home. And then they don't like leftovers!

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  7. @Gayle - ha! i know exactly what you mean. we throw out a lot of leftovers and that's just a waste, waste, waste of time, effort, and money. pb&j solves that problem nicely.

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