I’m not a fan of nagging. But I’m not above it. I think I am but the harsh reality of that delusional thinking hits me in the face every single time I open the garbage cupboard door and some piece of refuse tumbles to the floor two days after I asked my loving husband to take the trash out. Run-on sentences are less annoying than that.
I feel the nag rise.
I feel the passive aggressive demon coil in my gut.
And then, I choose. Honestly, most of the time I choose to either take a picture of it and send it to him with a frowny face or make a big show of how fast I can take it out while he stands nearby totally oblivious of the war in my mind. I usually choose that which I’m not proud of.
Why on earth does this matter to me so much?
Every time I take his lack of doing a request personally I wonder about my own sanity. I am a being of light. I am transformed. I am also a fricking hypocrite.
Let’s not dwell there though. The purpose of this post is to shine some light on awareness. Awareness of the helpful things that happen right under our noses that if we can tame the nagging beast we can see some pretty amazing things.
1. I can tell every time my husband uses the vacuum. When he is done he perfectly reattaches each tool and coils the cord exactly as it is meant to be. I, on the other hand, half ass loop the cord around the handle and leave the vacuum in the middle of whatever room I used it with the hose thingy dangling every which way but tidy.
2. He washes windows. Thoroughly. Our windows are pretty gross most of the time but if we have guests coming over, that we don’t really know, I will almost always find him with a bottle of windex scrubbing the nose and handprints off each glass surface in our home. I don’t remember the last time I washed any window. Really. It’s just not on my priority list.
3. He organizes his tools. Now, he often leaves expensive tools out in the weather for long periods of time but, when he does put them away they are like soldiers all lined up and well maintained. When I ask to use a tool, I can always locate it.
4. He has patience with the kids while he does projects. He also includes them. They drag his tools all around and undo his progress over and over and he just takes them by the hand and turns on the hose or gives them a box of clay pigeons to destroy. He will take all three of them to his garage to work on a project so that I can get some cleaning done. His garage, his perfectly tidy garage, usually looks like a natural disaster hit it when they’re done. Does he complain? Nope. Not a word.
5. My husband clips baby fingernails. We currently don’t have a baby but he clips all the kids’ nails. He has since they were days old. I’ve done it a few times because, well, they grow fast and he has his own nails to clip. But, that man is meticulous. He’s only snipped each kid once, and who hasn’t snipped the tip of a teeny tiny baby finger at least once. He complains a bit when they are so fresh and new but I know that he kinda likes it.
6. He makes bottles at every feeding he is there for when we have a baby. All the night feedings, all the weekend and evening feedings. I breastfeed and he makes a formula bottle. We really had it perfected with the last baby. Breast, breast, bottle. Every time. His support by just making the bottles is what I attribute my best breastfeeding success yet. My daughter and I had that relationship for 6 whole months because of his help.
7. My hubs is the guy that will lay in bed, while on his phone, and ask if he has clean socks. Yes, it makes me want to throat punch him. He is also the guy that will see the overwhelming pile of laundry and if he has a second to help, he’ll toss a load in for me. He usually doesn’t say anything about it but I can always tell when he’s washed laundry because he takes the time to go from the laundry room to a bathroom and rinse out the soap cup. I leave it all gunky and goopy. When I walk in and the cup is clean, it makes me smile.
There you have it. Although he’s been actively working on it, it’s true that he’s been positively horrible about taking out the garbage in the past. It is on the top ten list of fight starters at our house. But, it’s one thing. It’s just one thing.
Who cares, besides me and my inner nag?
It is so easy to dwell on the things that annoy us. It is so easy to point out the flaws of those that we know so well. I propose we make a list. Not of the things that piss us off. Set that aside. You can always pick it up later. Write a list of the things surprise you. The things you’d never do but are so awesome and thoughtful. Write it. Read it. And then, compare it to the pettiness of complaining.
At first, when I started this post I wasn’t sure I could think of 5 things. Then I gat to change the title to 7. As I wrote, I realized that I spend so much time complaining in my head about his dirty clothes and boots in the middle of the room and sticky jam on the counters and of course, the garbage, that I haven’t spent much time thinking about the good things. The random weird things that no one else would ever know.
No one knows the good stuff. Not even me, until I shine a light on it. Shine that light. It’s so worth it.