It’s January! It’s cold out, and I have a 1 year old whose favorite new word is “No”. So in keeping myself busy and as to not lose my mind, I was cleaning out some drawers this morning. I found this old journal entry. I have to give Michael some major props here. He has really gone after what I talk about in the entry below. His kryptonite holds much much less power over him these days.
My husband’s kryptonite is work. Let me rephrase that - “performance” may be a better description. This is problematic but really in a lot of ways I should be thankful. It could be much worse - women, drugs, who knows- video games. It could be anything. In today’s world his kryptonite serves him well. First, what I mean by performance is he is an “all in” kind of guy. And if he chooses to be all in…. He will succeed.
Let’s look at his past. He took up triathlons and a few years later he was asked to be a part of Team USA in the Amatuer WORLD Canmpionships. Next, he decided to get an MBA- He graduated top 10 in his class at Duke. Next he decided to dedicate his time to turning around a struggling small business. Now, it is quite profitable. So what’s the problem??? Why in the world am I complaining? This sounds like the dream- right? Well, it surely does look good on the outside. Very accomplished. I can sense the rolling eyes of wives out there who are thinking, “if you only knew”. BUT, his kryptonite can become way problematic when the month we've just had happens. The pace gets out of control. 16 hour work days after an out of town business trip and maybe 21 straight days of work. In the month of July weekends are a luxury he just doesn't get.
It is not always like this. Seasons! From time to time things ramp up in a major way and I’m a single parent till they slow down again. You know, I’m not all that tired because I am used to the ramp up now. Also, I know this is part of “it”. I shouldn’t logically get angry at him or resent him for trying his best to provide for his family. But logic sometimes flies out the window in these seasons. Time- oh the time. There is so much time with the kids - every minute. And that means lots of time to get lost in my thoughts. Typically I get lost puffing myself up and breaking him down in my mind. These are all the reasons why you are taking advantage of me and failing your children, and we don’t deserve this. It usually goes something like this…..I take care of the homefront 100% so you can come and go as you please. Sometimes it’s 6 PM sometime it is 9. Regardless, you expect us to be sitting here waiting on you with a healthy dinner ready and if we are out doing something and miss you it is my fault because I can’t magically read your mind and know today is going to be an early day for you. You can’t miss your weekly guitar lesson but can't find time to take your wife on a date. Speaking of… You talk a big talk about taking your kids to breakfast once a week and it simply doesn’t happen. This talk in my head goes on and on.
A lot of it is true, but more than that it is so so f*cking harmful!!! It feeds itself. It gets a firm grip on me and grows and then when the long work weekend is over I am ripe and ready for WW III. Meanwhile Michael walks into the scene totally worn out, clueless to the fact that the setting of our home has switched to a war zone and I am ready to attack on the couch with a glass of wine and and plenty of ammunition. I’ve done better in the past year or so of seeing this yuckiness for what it is and dealing with it in a more healthy way. So, where am I now? Well, we still have a major-ish issue with the work / family balance. Btw, what marriage out there doesn't struggle with this from time to time. But a thought struck me last night mid downward spiral.
My thought: “I wish he’d do just one, just one, nice thoughtful thing for me”
A voice within (call it what you will): “What nice thoughtful something have you done for him recently?”