Generally just pissed off?
Yep, we all feel like that A LOT. Far more than we ever used to. Personally, I put it down to the fact that we’re trying to balance a heck of a lot more things than ever before. We fought for women’s rights – but forgot to pass over the million other ‘jobs’ we do to be shared out equally. Well… we forgot, or decided we could still ‘manage’ and do it better.
Are you nodding?
My first perfect example of this is a situation I had with my husband last night. My darling toddler (he’d been to nursery – I always have a higher fondness for him when I haven’t seen him all day) was fast asleep and he’d come home from nursery with some sort of creepy rash on his face. I decided to go up and put some cream on it in his sleep, so he wouldn’t intentionally wipe it off. My hubby was going up anyway to tuck him in, switch his lamp off, remove the 3000 Thomas books that he has to take to bed, extract the plastic spiky dinosaurs from his vice-like grip, remove the soft toys that are lovingly smothering him etc just like he does every night. Tom ALWAYS tucks Charley in (it was a cunning plan of mine from the start – if he wakes up I’m snuggled up with a cuppa downstairs then it’s Tom’s problem).
But I’d decided that Tom wasn’t capable of putting the cream on his face.
I mean WTF? He literally had to squeeze a tube, and smear some cream on (after going through the stealth ninja procedure that he’s already masterfully perfected). Instead, I chose to drag my heavily pregnant ass upstairs to supervise this complicated procedure! What is wrong with me? Why do we do this? Tom actually whispered angrily as I’m puffing my way upstairs “why don’t you just trust me?” All he wants to do is to look after us all – and I don’t let him at times. Lots of times.
Other examples of my unwillingness to let go show themselves all of the time. Cleaning for a start – when Tom has done any cleaning I’ll frequently ‘improve’ it. Making the bed (why can’t he just smooth the corners – it takes two seconds), hanging the washing on the airer (just pull the fricking sleeves the right way round), packing Charley’s nursery bag (why can’t you put the wipes in after the nappies – it’s so much more practical). My husband is literally an angel and does so much more around the house than me – but I’m always dogging at him.
So what the hell is my problem?
I’m not totally sure. I either I feel I could do it better, or that it’s my responsibility. Both of which are utterly ridiculous piles of bullshit. Is there a better way to smear cream on a face? Does it matter when the wipes are under the nappies in a bag I’m not even using?! My responsibility? Hmmmmm, I didn’t create the kid’s rash. I didn’t create the kid by myself either come to that (though I frequently throw out the fact that I grew him when I’m in a righteous mood – just like I’m doing with the one I’m currently growing!) Why the hell I think that I’ll sleep in the bed better if the corners are smoothed down just right I’ve no idea, seeing as if Charley decides to come & bounce on it, I’m quite happy to leave it in a rumpled state. So why am I trying to hold Tom to some invisible exacting standards that I’ve chosen to inflict on myself?
Ooooh, my therapist brain just pulled me up on my choice of word there. Chosen. I’m choosing this crazy game every single time I think my way is the best/right/only way to do things. How much more chilled out would I be if I could get this phrase in my head:
“Done, not perfect”.
Tom gets things done. I then go around re-doing them to get them ‘perfect’! What a fucking waste of my life. & for what? I’m sure Charley will wake up this morning and admire the perfectly applied cream that’s now smeared all over his bed. I’m sure nursery are SO grateful that the wipes are packed on top of the nappies for their ease. I need to get a grip! And a life. I wonder how much time I spend re-doing perfectly adequately done things. It’s time to stop. With another baby about to hit the household any day now I can’t keep up this ridiculous cycle. Nor should I even want to. Why would other people want to help us and do things for us, if we’re stabbing them in the back as soon as they turn around? Let’s vow now to step back. There are a million ways to do things – what makes us so cocky that ours is the ‘right’ one? Tom survived perfectly well before he met me and I’m pretty sure he didn’t lose sleep over wrinkled bed corners.
I’d love to know your thoughts and hear your examples of this over on our Facebook page.