First let me say that I love my husband and feel very lucky to have him in my life. We met in 2005, and got married in 2007. We had both been in difficult marriages earlier, and I certainly wasn’t planning to ever get married again, because I felt that was only for the child-bearing years. Well, he wore me down, having proposed about 3 months after we met, to which I responded, “Are you insane?” Undaunted, he continued to badger me until I said yes. I’m very glad I did. It’s different once you’re married.
Dear Husband is the inventor of the phrase, “It’s just my way,” about which I have previously blogged and which is a sanity-saving, marriage-preserving, parent-tolerating magical tool. He has many, many endearing qualities, including a love of grocery shopping. I need never set foot in a supermarket ever again and all my foodly needs will be met. Since I loathe grocery shopping, this is a really endearing quality! The only down side is that when I do occasionally visit the supermarket, I am stunned by the prices, as I haven’t been constantly exposed to their incremental growth. Bacon is $8 a pound?
He is a very kind person who really doesn’t have a drop of meanness in him. He has a ton of enthusiasm for the things in which he has developed an obsession a deep interest over his lifetime, specifically anything to do with James Bond and with space travel. We always have fun, even when we’re doing ordinary everyday stuff. We have both worked hard to blend our two families and feel fortunate that there is a genuine closeness among all of the children.
Here’s the other shoe dropping: the things he does that make me nuts. Speaking of shoes, he buys shoes and underwear and SAVES THEM. As a shoe-loving woman, the idea of not wearing new shoes immediately is blasphemy to me. I can’t stand that he has shoes upon shoes in inventory. What could he be waiting for? The underwear I can kind of understand – if you have a brand you like, why not stock up? Luckily, our dogs occasionally get their paws on Dear Husband’s undies and have a good time playing tug of war with them, so the vast archives of skivvies will soon have to be plundered.
Here is the current thing that is driving me mad. I am a very cluttery person. I try to be neater, but I’m just not made that way. There is no shortage of straightening up to be done, and Dear Husband is quite good at it. However, he feels compelled to recycle THIS WEEK’s supermarket circulars the minute they arrive. I, on the other hand, like to keep them around for the whole week. Now, if there was a pristine counter and the only thing lying on it was a messy supermarket ad, I could see his need to remove it. But such is not the case. He has to dig it out and pluck it from the pile in order to toss it. Why? Is it perhaps some passive-aggressive behavior? He denies this emphatically.
The Counter of Clutter
On this same theme, he will decide that Something that has been Somewhere forever needs to be placed Somewhere Else. Usually this Something is one of MY things. So I spend hours searching for it, doubting my sanity and making myself late for work. In desperation, I will ask him if he’s seen the Something, and he will calmly say, “Oh yes, I decided to store it away in the laundry room.” Did he bother to tell me? Of course not.
This charming peccadillo of his reached its apex last week. I use artificial sweetener in my breakfast of cottage cheese and peaches, which I have every morning. I had a cute little ceramic fish that had been sitting on one of the counters for years, and I started putting the little packets of sweetener in the fish so they would be there when I needed them. This went on happily for a long time, until one day, there was no fish on the counter. Not a big deal — I could get a packet of sweetener from the big box in the cupboard, but damn it, I wanted to find that fish! Did I absent-mindedly move it somewhere else? Did someone break it and hide the evidence? It couldn’t just disappear, could it? I began to search through the clutter, with no luck.
Do you see the little pink ceramic fish?
Dear Husband finishes his shower, gets dressed and comes downstairs. “Have you seen that little ceramic fish that was on the counter next to the refrigerator?” I asked him. “Oh yes,” he said, “I felt it belonged on the kitchen table.” This makes logical sense when you read it. People eat breakfast at the table, so that is where the sweetener should be. However, MY kitchen table is covered with things that need to be returned to various stores, magazines I intend to read someday, files from work, bank statements, etc. I think the last time it was cleared off enough to eat on was in June.
This is what Dear Husband saw when he decided to move the fish.
This is where he moved the fish. Can you find it?
So why would he get a sudden urge to move something HE never uses, to a place where it can’t possibly be seen, meanwhile disregarding all kinds of other household crap and clutter? He cannot explain it and I can’t understand it. It’s just his way, I guess.
Does your spouse do things that drive you mad? Please share!