The storm that is my life rages on around me but now, in the midst of the tumult and turmoil, I enjoy a still, quiet peace.
Is this really happening? Have I actually learned something?
The silence in my head is a resounding “yes” in itself.
For the past two weeks Zoe’s unremitting screams and refusal to eat have been grinding me down to the bone. The most sophisticated means she has of asking me to read her a book is repeatedly dropping them on my face while I attempt to nap. And she wants me to read her a whole lot of books. Yesterday I gave away one tenth of my blood and I’m still woozy on my feet.
Frankly, I feel plain grumpy. Plus, Zoe pooped in the bathtub twice this past week. The things that never occurred to me when I decided to have children. As they say, when it rains it… well… you know.
I mean, shoot, how many more excuses does one require in order to invite conflict into the home?
Raised with gregarious and overbearing Indian values, conflict had been as much a part of my life as the air I breathe and the TV I intake– all three consumed at alarming rates. Healthy, to me, looked like one quick burst of anger to “lay it all out there” and then find some eventual resolution. But you know, the anger never really ceased. It just compounded. It was never as cathartic as it was meant to be.
Disagreement in relationships is inevitable; conflict, entirely optional.
I can personally attest to this. Over the last few weeks Oliver and I have been pushed over the edge of our emotional capacities in every way, and yet we have not fought.
… Am I the only one that hears the chorus of “Hallelujah” in the background?
Ah, the secret to a happy marriage, and here we are finally mastering it. When you make a primary commitment to care about each other, you can address problems before they become problems. What little energy we have remaining is now directed towards unearthing solutions, as opposed to picking fights, undergoing the lengthy and costly process of resolving them, repairing the damage done to our relationship, and then attempting to go after those solutions.
I’ll be darned if I don’t prefer this way. With a simple, “Oliver, I feel like shit and would really like to X, Y, and Z,” all of the excess drama can be easily snipped out of our lives. No longer will I harbor the silent expectation that Oliver delve into tarot cards or crystal balls in order to read my mind of my unspoken needs.
For months I was certain I was spinning my wheels and yet here I am, taking definitive steps toward becoming the kind of wife I hope to become.
I’ll take it.