Saturday, December 27, 2008

Contents Under Pressure

The Partner and I do not do well under pressure. We fought for the entire week before our wedding, came to an armistice in time for the rehearsal ceremony, and were back at each other's throats by dinner. The day of our wedding dawned peacefully, but the honeymoon was over three days in.

We have stood back-to-back, with arms folded, for three out of five anniversaries. Valentine's Day hasn't fared much better. Birthdays are hit or miss. Only Independence Day has emerged unscathed. There's no pressure there, just beer and a barbecue and friends who kindly insist that we shovel up the bullshit, stick in a firecracker, and watch it burn a hole in the ozone.

The main issue is organization versus chaos. It's common sense versus distraction in the face of shiny objects. It's The Partner's desire for a well oiled machine and my belief that I can get by just fine without lube.

This Christmas was no exception. I failed to order the cards in a timely manner. Then I realized I didn't order enough. I ran out of tape while wrapping presents on Christmas Eve. The layers of laundry in front of the washing machine collided--continental Dreft?--and formed a mountain.

None of this amuses The Partner. In fact, if we have, by some chance, smoothed things over by the time he reads these words, the reminder alone will piss him off all over again.

The other day, a friend asked me if The Partner and I like fighting. She was perfectly serious and so was I when I answered, "I guess so." I mean, my husband and I both knew what we were getting into when we started making each other miserable eleven years ago. There are few surprises in a relationship based on the premise that one party is perfect while the other is tragically flawed.

The excitement is in seeing who can yell louder, act deafer, and hold a grudge longer while stomping all over a foundation that defies human engineering in its solidity.


Whirlwind said...

But you make it work - I mean if you have five anniversaries under your belt...

You know, I was wondering about teh Christmas cards - I was just thinking, hey we didn't get one... That seems to be a theme this year though - we've had SEVERAL people say they're not done and are sending them out sometime this week. So don't feel like your alone there!

Anonymous said...

I'm there with the Christmas cards too. I didn't order enough and a bunch of people did not get them. I just made a mental note to order more next year (the same mental note I made last year that fell through the cracks).

With my husband, we have narrowed down our issues to expectations. We laid them out so there are no surprises. On my sied, they tend to be: don't expect me to have the laundry finished, or dinner out early. Once he knows it, he still gets pissed, but at least he knew what was coming!

Heather said...

Oh gosh, holidays are so stressful anyway. I can understand arguing at all of them. When I piss my husband off, he just doesn't speak to me for a week. It's very quiet.

I don't think we are meant for anyone but each other though.

KCsGrandma/Mom said...

I came to your site from my daughter Jennie's "KCRules" site. I love your writing style. Very entertaining. I am Jennie's Mom and KC's Grandma.

Lauren said...

One time when Chris came into my bedroom he said "You MIGHT actually be messier than Binky", so I just made you so much cooler and sexier in his eyes. Because you're not the messiest woman in the world, I am. You're welcome.

Lauren said...

PS. The reason he was in my bedroom was to look at the photos of him and your daughter that we had just taken for you for a mother's day gift. I'm not sleeping with your husband. Again, you're welcome.

toyfoto said...

Lauren is making me laugh. But you are I are like sisters in this, only I'm the sister who is anal retentive and had everything done in the summer ... and THEN stresses about it anyway. ... Once Christmas is here all I have left is rage. Then I rip of the head of my partner over nonsense such as which is more dangerous to a personal economy: credit or debit.

I think Jed and I spent four minutes this whole holidays season NOT fighting.

Chris said...

Need to point out that it's only been 4 anniversaries. But feels like 5 or more. Love you dear.