Actually, we've been really pissy with each other for about 6 months or so. You know the passive-aggressive kinda crap that most marriages are built on. We had a LOT going on with the new house, the financing (which was a GIANT pain in the ass), kids in new schools, etc., etc. To be honest, I felt like a lot had been dumped on my lap. More than my fair share. And I felt incredibly unappreciated.
Of course, did I say anything?
I just let it build. And build. And build. And build.
Because isn't that what marriage is? One perpetual argument about something stupid that happened 10 years ago?
The good thing, we had gone to counseling a few years ago. I would joke with the counselor about how she gave us good advice, but it might help if we would implement it from time to time. Kinda like with my clients...
So about 2 weeks ago, we were in Lowe's and I snapped.
Not a volcano. A seething "Are you f#*(ing kidding me?" kinda thing. I won't share the details of the fight because that's personal- just between us and the people at Lowe's who got to watch.
I will also say that the good thing about having gone to counseling is that I did stick to my guns, tried not to make it a personal attack, and said "Hey- I don't care what you THINK, this is how I FEEL and it's real." I was very calm.
And my husband, to his credit, didn't go to that place where he used to go which says "I WANT TO BE RIGHT AND I DON'T CARE!"
He yells. I get quiet. Coldly quiet.
Anyhow, clearly, we had made some progress.
He apologized. Thanked me for all the extra stuff I had to deal with with the move and the house build. He offered to help more.
He was super nice for the whole week.
But I was still pissed because one week does not make up for a few months.
He was trying. I was not.
So I decided that I would take the counselor's advice and deal with my own anger.
I planned a perfect date. Stuff that HE would like to do. Not stuff that I wished he would want to do with me. I made it a surprise.
Which terrified him a little. I think he was envisioning a fancy restaurant and a jazz club- a perfect date for ME. He looked relieved when I said "Casual is fine. Jeans are good. T-shirt, too."
Now he was really suspicious.
We had a blast. It made him remember why he liked me in the first place.
And then last night.
I have an integrated garage door opener- Homelink. We replaced our garage door opener after a month in the new house. My Homelink hasn't worked because you have to hold the button on the opener, while you press the button in the car. Clearly, I needed some help with that- as it is impossible to do both at the same time.
This was in November. I asked a few times. My husband has no recollection of that.
Now, this is not a tragedy. I have a garage door opener. But I have to keep it in my console- I use my visor a lot and it falls off. I always have to dig to find it. It's a pain.
A pain. Not a tragedy.
But it is February.
At some point in 4 months, I would have thought that my husband could have gotten a ladder and held the button.
But it became this THING to me. He kept saying it didn't work that way. I needed to do this or that or something because we had a fancy system.
I knew that I didn't. I needed him to get his happy ass up on a ladder and press the damn button for 30 freaking seconds.
Last night, after getting home at 9:15 after a very long, tedious day, I pulled in, fumbled with the garage door opener and thought "This is stupid." So I asked him to help me. To get the ladder and climb up and hold a button.
He started in that I needed to this and that.
We argued about the garage door opener.
I had been having this argument for 4 months in my head. This was a new fight for him.
So he caved and said he would. But he kept insisting that I do it this way or that way.
I finally said- "JUST PRESS THE BUTTON."
He did. I programmed my button.
Then it was if the last few weeks of niceness was erased and we were back at the perpetual fight.
Which scares me because I know those stupid passive-aggressive things are what kills marriages.
I generally like my husband. A lot. As I've mentioned he's a good kisser, can reach high places (as in the garage door opener) and lift heavy things. I prefer to stay married. Divorce seems like a giant pain. But being perpetually pissed off at someone for breathing funny isn't exactly fun either.
This morning I woke up, checked the market, the weather, my email and then flipped over to Facebook.
The first post I saw was from a very good friend of mine who moved a few years ago. We were great mommy friends. We met at Gymboree on Saturday mornings. We hit it off. We both had fairly stressful careers and were trying to find a balance. Our sons are only a few weeks apart.
Her husband, who had a very stressful, high level job, always seemed to make time to be the coach. Soccer. T-ball. You name it. He ALWAYS stepped up. He was organized. Encouraging. Fantastic. He was the guy with the least amount of time and you never would have known from the commitment he showed- not just to his son, but to everyone's kid. He spoiled us.
They had a great house in Vegas. We spent nearly every weekend in the summer in their pool. They moved away to have an easier, less stressful life. To start fresh. Their jobs were getting to them. The recession provided a great opportunity for them to reset. I genuinely miss them. It took me 2 years to stop picking up the phone to see if she wanted to grab a coffee or go to the park.
Fortunately, we've kept in touch via Facebook. I think our sons would still be best friends if they lived here. They camp like we do. They hunt. They fish. The both lost a bunch of weight and look amazing. It looked like the slower life was agreeing with them.
She was the first post that came up on my feed this morning.
Her husband has brain cancer. They just found out. He is in surgery as I type. He has a fight ahead of him.
And suddenly, the garage door opener doesn't seem like such a big deal.