Friday, 6 July 2012

Confessions of a Newlywed: Pick Your Battles

I have this friend, and she is somewhat perfect for me. We completely get each other. We're crazy similar in our likes/dislikes and more importantly our views on life, which prevents us from having those moments when you're sitting there thinking "What the heck are you saying?" when your friend is talking and all sorts of crazy is coming out of her mouth.

Come on people, it's honesty time. You know you've been there.

Ok. there was that one time that she talked about putting someone in a potato sack and beating the living daylights out of them. That was a bit nuts. I was pretty sure she was kidding though. Pretty sure.

Back to the point.

This woman amazes me. She and her husband have been through hell and back, and through all of it she has been more than happy to learn not only how they can relate to one another better, but how she can be a better wife to him. One thing she learned is something that has helped me immensely.

Pick your battles.

Stop nitpicking at all the little things. the socks on the floor. The cup on the bedside table. The water all over the bathroom counter. These things do not need to be pointed out every single day

Now, I know you think you've heard this before, and so had I, but there is a difference in this wisdom. Also, I know that you've probably heard the flip side of this coin. The "Don't let things slide so much that one day you blow up at him" side. Trust me, I'm not saying that. Next week I'll actually talk about that very issue.

The difference here is that I am not saying that you should pick up his socks every single day and grumble inwardly about it, causing a slow boil that will eventually erupt all over his dinner in tears.

I'm not saying that happened. At least not this week. *ahem* At least not in the past 5 days.

What I am saying is recognize why it bugs you, and see if you have cause to feel that way. For my friend and I we realized that seeing those socks might make us feel like he is intentionally untidying our tidy homes. Intentionally undoing all the work we do as wives who take pride in having a floor with no socks on it. Not taking our feelings into consideration (They know it bugs us when there are socks on the floor!!) Essentially, he is intentionally being a jerk.

Well now that sounds a little like the crazy talk we spoke about earlier, doesn't it?

Truth is, he barely notices the socks. He took them off and didn't give it a second thought. No, it is not him being unkind by not keeping my feelings in mind. It is him simply being him and not me. Yes, it's true he knows how I feel about it, and in a perfect world if he was able to have two sets of emotions- both his and mine, he would be able to feel the way I feel as soon as the socks hit the floor. Let me know if you hear of any new research being done in the man-emotion-category. I'll be all over that, for reals. But reality is he is one person and I am another, and I need to stop hoping he'll just start to be more like me.

So to summerize.... he's not being a jerk. His feet just get hot, and he has no desire to stand up, walk to the bedroom, take his socks off and deposit them in the laundry hamper, then walk back to the couch. And by the time it's bedtime, he has forgotten the socks are right beside him.

Ok. I can deal with that.

The beauty in this discovery is that now when I see those socks I don't grumble and boil. I pick them up without a second thought. I'm not pushing down my unhappy feelings. I simply have no feelings towards it. Those socks have no power over me anymore. Bazinga!

This post was the sixth installment of a new series Confessions of a Newlywed. I hope you'll track along with me, as well as some guest posts as we explore the topic of marriage.

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