Monday, December 27, 2010

On Cool Kids

My cousin had her little girls down at Christmas this year.  They are adorable. 

Her oldest one is 4, and she is a bright little girl.  We sat on the couch and ate Chex Mix together and talked about her pets and Buzz Lightyear. 

If I can have kids like her, then I AM IN.

Besides, I need someone to pass my American Girl on to.  I have Felicity, my sister has Samantha.  Hours of fun I tell you. 

Quick aside: 

Scene:  Christmas Eve morning, Coach's parents house.  I'm about to open a very large (in size) Christmas present from his parents. 

Right before I reach down to start ripping off the paper, Coach's dad says "I don't want to send the wrong message or anything...." Coach points at his dad and says in a somewhat threatening tone: "That better not be a crib!"

It was a shop vac.  And hysterical!

Any funny holiday moments to share?

On Sickness

Coach is sick.

He hasn't felt well for a couple days.  Last night he got home from a movie and was sick as soon as he got home.  He was up 6 or 7 times last night sick too, puking and cold and miserable.  He wanted to sleep on the couch, but I wouldn't let him.  He held on to me in bed like I was a life raft. 

We've been together for years, and I've never seen him sick with anything more than a cold or a sinus infection.  He's worrying me, because he can't keep hardly anything down.  He's got until tomorrow to feel better or he's going to the doctor. 

I feel like that part should be in captial letter.  He's Going To The Doctor.  Because He Is, because I Said So.

I hate seeing him so miserable.  I almost wish it was me, except I have no sick days and he's off all week, so I guess it is better that it's him. 

If I hurt this much seeing my husband sick, what am I going to do when I have sick babies?

How do you handle a sick spouse?

Thursday, December 16, 2010

On Goodbyes

In 2006, my parents bought a house.  My sister and I fixed it up and decorated it together, and we've been living together ever since.  (We paid my parents rent, we're spoiled, but self-reliant).

We scoured antique and thrift stores together.  We sewed pillows together, and tried to stuff them with shredded bits of foam that got everywhere.  We have a dog here together.  I have outfit advice whenever I want it, and my accessories collection is doubled. 

And tomorrow, I move out and in to my gorgeous new home with my husband, who's been living with us since the wedding in July.  It's been an unorthodox arrangement, but we've made the rent and utilities much cheaper for my sister, and it allowed for us to look for, find a house, and fix up a house all while having a place to live. 

I'm so sad.  I'll miss seeing her every morning and every evening.  I'll miss having her tell me how cute I look in XXX shirt, or that she made oatmeal and made some for me too.  I'll miss the house we fixed up together.  It was my first home outside of my parents house.  It's my bachelorette pad. 

I'll never get to do any of this again, and as excited as I am about finally living with my husband and having our own house that we are so fortunate to live in, I am so sad that all of this-my single life, my life with little to no compromise, my life with my sister a hallway away-is coming to a close.

Oh, and I'm crying over this just typing it.  And I cried over it when I saw my closet all emptied out tonight.  And I know I'm going to cry tomorrow, when I see my ballerina-pink-vintage-Vogue-poster all empty. 

It's a huge chapter of my life coming to a close.  And even though I'm going to be 3 minutes away and I'm joining the gym she goes to so we can have bi-weekly elliptical dates, I'm sad.  I'm a huge pansy, I know.

Ugh.  Please don't comment and tell what a huge pans I am.  I know it's true.

Has any of the transitioning from single-married life been particularly difficult for you?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

On Me Time

Since closing on our house November 1st, Coach and I's free time has completely disappeared.  Our house was not at all turn key ready, so every evening after work we went over to the house to whip it in to shape.  I still do some work on the side for my old job, so 2 evenings a week I've got scripts to work on.

Needless to say, my me time was nonexistent.

Coach is away this week for a coach's conference.  I miss him, and I know by Friday I'll be dying to see him....but.....I am loving every second of me time I'm having this week.  Last night I watched 2 episodes of Bones in bed while I crafted.  It was heaven.  And I slept in the middle of the bed, all sprawled out.  And hogged all the covers. 

I feel awful about not missing him more, but hell...I feel like I'm on a personal vacation or something! 

Tonight-more crafting.  And at least 2 more episodes of Bones.  Then I'm going to turn on the Nat Geo special on the Gospel of Judas while I fall asleep.  Yummm....

Just to further excuse my guilt, Coach and I spent our entire 16 month engagement living 2 hours away.  I saw him 2-3 times a month, so pretty much all I had was me time. 

The guilt, the guilt!  Do you enjoy me time?  To the point where you aren't super upset that your partner is out of town? 

Friday, December 10, 2010

On Cake

So, Thanksgiving was Coach's side of the family this year.  His mom's side had lunch, his dad's side, dinner.

His mom's side is a bit more....high flutin', you could say.  They're all on the wealthy side, and their family gatherings are different from anything I've ever been too!

Different is not code for bad here.  They take out the fine china and set up Thanksgiving dinner in these gorgeous buffet servers.  It's lovely.  There are plenty of tables set up and you can sit with whoever you'd like.  All in all a really nice meal. 

But.  In my family, you offer to help clean up/get dinner on the table, and you bring something.  You never show up empty handed. 

Not so for Coach's mom's side.  Offers to help were absolutely refused, politely of course.  And my offer to bring this killer tiramisu layer cake I make was also refused.  They have a set in stone rotation of food, and the same people bring the exact same dish every single year. 

One of his cousin's joked that her pie didn't "pass muster," so she never brought it again.  Ouch. 

So I'm not taking it personally.  It's just a world away from what I'm used to.  But I'm not going to is hard not to be a little offended.  I feel just a little like my cake isn't "good enough." 

Things are done differently.  I need to work on not feeling slightly offended. 

Does your partner's family do holidays really differently than you?  Anything about your partner's holiday tradition that leave you feeling kind of left out?

Thursday, December 9, 2010

On the Handling of Stress

Coach doesn't handle stress very well. 

We still aren't moved in to our house....stuff keeps cropping up.  Stuff that costs money.  Money that we have safely tucked away in various savings accounts set aside specifically for this stuff.  The money is there, but poor Coach is such a saver that seeing it leak steadily out of said savings accounts is making him pull his hair out.

And his work....oh his work.  He works so much. 

He's stressed, in general.  And he doesn't deal with it as well as I'd like.  He gets angry at everything, and is just all over unhappy and hard to please.  Not fun to live with.

I'm riding this wave out.  He'll get out of this funk, I just have to wait and let him process. 

Also we need to bang this out.  Oh yeah, I said it.  I've been indisposed for the past week (Aunt Flo and all) and he's got too much bottled up frustration. 

Does your husband handle stress in a not so great way?  How do you deal with an unlivable partner?

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

On Sickness and Do-ability

Last week, I had the sinus infection from h*ll.  It was rough.  Sore throat that made me sound like I smoke 2 packs a day, copious amounts of snot gushing from my nose, nostrils rubbed raw from tissues....not cute, overall.

I've never really been ill for any extended period of time around Coach, always just sniffly for a day or two then better.  But this sinus infection WOULD NOT VACATE the premises. 

5 days into this sickness, Coach romances me in bed, acting like I am on the cover of Maxim or something.  Same thing the next morning.  I'm talking ultimate sweetness, kisses on my shoulders, general behavior as if I am some treasured artifact.  All while I look like the before chick on a cold medicine commercial.

He still wanted to do me, red nose, lots of snot and all.  And to know that my husband still thinks I'm do-able in that state was the most liberating thing in the world. 

Marriage is surprising.  I knew the man loved me, but wow.....he loves me. 

Has your marriage surprised you?  How does your partner respond when you're sick?

Saturday, November 27, 2010

On Too Much Time

Coach and I arrived in his home town Wednesday night.  It's Saturday morning and I am ready to go home.

We had a really nice holiday-our first one together couldn't have been better.  We stopped by my family's celebration for an hour or so (this is his family's year for Thanksgiving, so this was very nice of him), then we went on to 2 other family celebrations.  We were visiting from 11-8 or so, so it was a longish day.  Yesterday we shopped all day.  And this morning I was on the computer, when his mom announced that only Coach and I would be making an appearance on their Christmas card this year, since she doesn't like a single picture of herself from the wedding.  Because someone else did her hair and she doesn't like it.

So...I'm ready to go home!  We had such a great time this weekend, but I think that my limit with his mom is about 36-48 hours.  At least I know my limitations, right?

How was your holiday with your partner?  How much is too much time with your in-laws/family?

Monday, November 22, 2010

On Beginnings

One of Coach's athletes had a first date with a girl he really likes this weekend.  This poor kid is the only guy on the team sans girlfriend, and he is very insecure about it.  A date going well for him is so important. 

While at dinner at a nice Italian restaurant, the athlete's car is hit while parked and totaled.  The athlete and his date find the car, and the athlete had to stay behind to deal with the cops, tow trucks, etc etc, while the date's roommate came and picked her up. 

The athlete was mortified at the way the date ended up, and told Coach about.  Coach replied:

"On IP (that's me!) and I's 2nd date, my truck wouldn't start because it was so cold.  Her sister had to come and pick us up.  She ended up marrying me....if your date is cool, she won't mind a bit."

I thought it was sweet.  He doesn't deliver sentiment how I would myself, but his way works so much better for him.  I love the story of us. 

I'm so sorry I've been so absent...Coach and I are trying to ready our house for move in (which is hopefully this weekend, keep your fingers crossed he doesn't discover any "must do before move in" projects!), and we are over there working whenever we aren't at work.  I have lots of commentary on remodeling together...I think it might be far superior to pre-marital counseling! 

Does your partner surprise you with unexpected sentiment?

Saturday, November 13, 2010

On Too Much

Lately I've really overwhelmed and overly-emotional, almost as if I'm on the verge of tears 99% of the time. I'm not sad, not in the least, I think I'm just so bowled over by how good my life is right now.

I went from seeing my almost-husand 2-3 times a month to waking up next to him every day.

I went from absolute terror of seeing Coach desperately unhappy and unfulfilled as another coaching job passed him by because he wasn't a woman or a minority (Coach lost several jobs to Equal Hiring policies) to seeing my man be the Coach I always knew he could.

I'm going from living in a cute house by the park with my best friend and sister to the house of my dreams with my husband. As sad as I am to leave my sister, I know how important it is that Coach and I have our own place, and I can't wait.

I went from a job where I never knew when I'd be laid off because my boss spent all of the money that month to a job in my field of study that looks like it's going to be awesome for me. And for my little family, because the bonuses are amazing.

I went from struggling with money to being comfortably frugal, thanks to my husband and his amazing financial know-how.

My only explanation for how overly-emotional I am is that I feel so utterly blessed, so fortunate, so loved. And I feel that so much that it's just has nowhere to go!

Here's hoping I can calm the F down...

Have any of you been bowled over by the way your life turned out after the flurry of wedding planning died down?

Thursday, November 4, 2010

On Wonder

Yesterday was a silly anniversary for Coach and I, but it's one of my favorites. 

November 3, 2007 is the day I first laid eyes on Coach.  I saw him at a sporting event, I thought he was hot, and I (brazenly for me) added him to Facebook.  He messaged me back, and 6 months later, we were dating. 

In honor of the day yesterday, I went back and re-read the epic FB message thread that Coach and I had after I first added him as a friend.  We went back and forth for weeks until I finally suggested that we meet in person.  Reading through those messages just blows my mind.  I think about the girl that I was then, and how much I was hurting over the loss (not physical, but our friendship was in its' death throes) of my best friend for years and years to alochol.  I think about how cute I thought he was, and I look back in absolute wonder that we ever ended up together.  Because while I first contacted Coach in November of 2007, we didn't start dating until March of 2008.  And he almost said no in March because I had been so wishy washy for almost 6 months. 

When I look at Coach, I'm no longer in awe every single time over the fact that he's in my life.  I look at my husband and I see the person who "gets" me the very most, the person who I would do anything in the world for.  I see comfort when I look at him, because I know that no matter how much of a pain in the *ss I am, he's going to be there.  Always.  But when I look back over our beginning, I am struck by an enormous sense of wonder that so many variables and components all came together just right, at just the right time, all to deliver me to my husband.  And him to me. 

So every November 3rd, I like to read over those Facebook messages.  I only do it once a year, on that day, and I am always moved to tears over how much could have gone wrong, and how much went just right. 

Did the stars align when you met your spouse/partner?  Or did it take awhile for everything to fall in to place, like it did for Coach and I?

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

On Mileage

Coach and I closed on our first home yesterday.

Our home just so happens to be less than a half a mile from my parent's house. 

It's totally fine with me, but if we lived less than a half a mile from Coach's parents....not so fine.  This makes me feel guilty. 

After the wedding, when we moved Coach down to my hometown and got settled into the house I've been sharing with my sister, my parents made a big effort to give us our space.  I don't go over to my parent's house more than once or twice a week, and we have dinner with them maybe twice a month.  I really admire my parents for giving us our space to enjoy being newlyweds. 

I feel mean thinking this, but I know that Coach's parents would not have done so.  They just aren't like that, they're much more in your face.  Exhibit A:  Coach and I didn't take a honeymoon.  He had a new job to start.  The weekend after the wedding, we did go to St. Louis (where Coach is from and where his parents live) to have a "mini-moon."  We got a hotel room, completed our registries, etc etc....and had dinner at his parents house.  On our mini-moon.  They just aren't good with boundaries. 

I shudder to think what we'd be dealing with if we lived so close to his parents.  As cranky as it sounds, I'm glad we don't! 

Did your parents back off a bit so you can revel in your newlyweddedness?  Or are your parents much more involved, and is this good or bad for you?

Friday, October 29, 2010

On Absence and Hearts Growing Fonder

Coach and I saw each other 3 weekends a month for the duration of our engagement.  I was concerned that going from seeing Coach 3x a month for a very limited time that suddenly living with him and spending ALL of our free time together would be stressful.

It hasn't been stressful, but it is a huge adjustment, one I'm still adjusting too.  I need to work on spending more time with my family, but other than that, seeing Coach every day is a dream come true.

That's not to say that I don't thoroughly enjoy my Coach-free weekends.  Coach is in either Kentuckey or Tennessee today and tomorrow for a cross country meet (can't remember which, I just know he's in Cookeville, so wherever that's at!), and I have had a wonderful afternoon.  I had lunch with my granda, finished up lots of bachelorette party stuff for a wonderful friend's party tomorrow,  had lots of gabfests with girlfriends and I went couch shopping.  Now I'm eating Oreos in bed, finishing up a freelance script I'm writing, and watching an episode of Bones before falling asleep on Coach's awesome pillow.  And I'm going to sleep smack in the middle of the bed and hog all the covers.  I think I'll just sleep in my make up too, why not. 

Truly though, free time apart is so important for Coach and I.  I know he probably needs more than I do, so I need to give myself permission to leave him alone for an evening or so a week and hang out with my mom and sisters. 

Seeing him after he's gone for a while always guarantees a nice quiet dinner out or some lazy Sunday morning lounging.  Lovely all around.  Though tomorrow night he'll be picking an inebriated me up from a bar downtown in all my bachelorette glory, and there won't be anything quiet about that!

Is alone time important to you and your partner?  Because Coach would be a dead man for sure without it!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

On Procreating Pressure

My father-in-law is an elementary school principal.  He used to be a kindergarten teacher.

My mother-in-law works with early childhood development.

My in-laws lives revolve around little kids.  They want grandkids so, so badly.  The grandkid pressure started up mere months after we got engaged.  6 months before the wedding my FIL told me that he "wouldn't mind a bit if I walked down the aisle with a preggo belly."  At Coach's family's Easter get-together, my FIL publicly pointed out, in front of 50+ family members, that his brother has 7 grandkids and that it isn't fair.  My MIL is even worse.  Every single time we see them they want to know when we're going to provide them with grandkids.  Every single time it is a major focus of conversation.  It used to be funny, but it isn't at all anymore.

To make matters just a little more sensitive, I have known since I was 18 that getting pregnant was't going to be easy for me.  Coach, trying to help with the situation, told his parents all about my previously-private medical condition.  So they know all about it, which makes me really uncomfortable.  And to complicate things, that knowledge that Coach imparted to them has done nothing to abate the baby talk.

I've been very clear with my in-laws that I put my career on hold for their son, and that I owe it to myself to pursue my career for the next 4-5 years.  At that point they told me that "we were your age when we had Coach's oldest sister, and everything turned out just fine, what's the problem."

Nothing works with them.  They keep bringing it up, and bringing it up.  It makes me feel like nothing but a walking uterus.  It makes me feel like I absolutely no value to them except for birthing them a grandkid.  I know they mean well, but they have zero tact when it comes to this recurring conversation.  It makes me want to avoid spending time with them.

Normally with my in-laws, I chalk it up to them meaning well, and wanting the best for us.  I've come to terms with differing parenting styles.  I've stopped taking my MIL's backhanded comments literally and I've learned to give her the benefit of the doubt.  But these people know that I have medical issues that could very prevent me from ever getting pregnant, they know that I have stated very clearly on numerous occasions that Coach and I need to enjoy our time together after a year and a half of a long distance relationship before we introduce kids into the equation.  None of this gets through to them at all; it's so frustrating.  And every time they start in, I think about what's going to happen if I can't get pregnant, and can't give Coach a baby of his own.  Because he's going to be the best dad.

So yeah.  My in-laws won't STF about how they want grandkids like yesterday.  THANK GOD some friends of ours who live up there popped out a kid that she can go and visit.  I feel like I should pay them.

I know the next thing to do would be to bluntly but nicely tell my in-laws to please stop pestering us for grandkids.  But trust me, they do NOT do well with bluntness.  They're the beat-around-the-bush type.  Which clearly ISN'T WORKING.

Are your in-laws/parents on the warpath for grandkids?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

On Attractiveness

I'm terrified of not being attractive to Coach.

OK, not to make my husband sound like an ass, but fitness is his life.  He's a cross country coach for goodness sakes.  He doesn't expect me to look like a fitness model, but he does expect me to at least try to maintain some level of physical fitness.  The man thinks I look the hottest all sweaty in a sports bra and running shorts.  And it's not like he doesn't hold himself to certain standards either-he's a marathoner, he cares very much about being healthy.

I feel like I'm making him sound a total ass.  Please don't think that about him, he really isn't.  I've always known this about him-it's not like a bomb that he dropped on me post-marriage.  And I know that he will always love me, no matter what.  But I also know that he will not be attracted to me, no matter what.  To him I think it's a way of showing your partner that you love them-by loving and caring for yourself.

So I guess I shouldn't say that I am terrified of not being attractive to my husband.  It just means that I'm always going to be conscious of this.  And frankly, Coach would make my mind rest much, much easier if he would tell me that I look nice, or do-able, etc, but that just isn't him.  Though it does make the times he tells me I look beautiful/sexy/etc that much more meaningful.

Do you worry about being attractive to your partner?

Monday, October 18, 2010

On Intentions

I used to think that my mother-in-law was the queen of backhanded compliments.

The morning after the wedding, she told me that "she really didn't think that several of my ideas were going to work out, but it turned out so lovely after all!" and that "I can't believe you made it so nice when it was so cheap!"

These used to disgruntle me, but now I really don't think she means them maliciously.  I think it's exactly what she means.  Like, not thinking some of my wedding ideas would work..she had never seen a receiving line happen before a wedding before.  She had no idea if it was going to work out or not, but she genuinely thought it was wonderful.  And she and her family come from a much wealthier background than I do, so it was really tough for her to see her son have his reception in a rented hall and not a fancy ball room or pavilion at Forest Park.  She sincerely meant that I made something that looked nice/expensive out of a very limited budget.

She sent me an e-mail last week about the house Coach and I close on next month.  She wrote that "I can see why you like it."  Which, tone-wise, can sound like that is the one and only positive thing she could think of to say about the house.  But now that I know her better, I understand that she really means that she sees why we like it--the 10 foot ceilings, hardwood floors, open staircase, etc.  No harm or spite meant on her part.  I just have to be open minded and not get defensive when she says stuff.

Maybe it's the nasty, pessimistic side of my that used to jump to the conclusion that what she said sounded like it had an undertone of negative.  But I'm not blaming myself...taken one way, lots of what my mother-in-law says sounds really backhanded.  I'm just glad I figured all of this out now and not later.  Nothing causes more stress with Coach and I than family stuff.

Ever since being married (and now that that huge stress is off everyone's plates), things with the in-laws have really settled.  It definitely feels like Coach and I are really easing in to each other's family dynamic.  It certainly hasn't always been easy, but it is getting so, so much easier.

Do your in-laws say things that throw you off?  Is family a stress for you and your partner?

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

On Procreating

Coach has always wanted kids more than I have.

I've always been so afraid of the havoc a baby would wreck on our lives-financially, physically (for me especially), relationship wise for Coach and I...besides the fact that I am not that great with little kids.  Kids have always seemed so limiting, so constricting.  I feel that having a child is going to cut down on our travel, on career options, on money, on everything.

Coach's friend D was down this weekend, with his wife and their new baby.  And when I held their son, and looked into his cute little face, I could see how it all could be so worth it.

My biological clock just started up in a big way.

How do you view kids in terms of your relationship?  Are you and your partner in agreement with how many kids you want, if any?

Monday, October 11, 2010

On Money

With this new job that I landed, I am the bread winner, by a pretty healthy margin.  Which is weird.

Coach is 90% in charge of our money.  He has an emergency savings account set up, an account to pay loans (such as car/student, and soon a mortgage!), a normal savings, a vacation fund, a gift fund and an everyday checking account.  We share all of these accounts, and a set amount from each of our paychecks is dispersed into each of these accounts.

It feels like we never have any freaking money, because it goes so many different places.  But when we need it for something, it's there, ready and waiting.  And Coach brought tremendous amounts of savings into our relationships....10x more than I did.  So even though I make more, he brought in so much to begin with, that it still feels hopelessly tilted in his favor.  Not that "who makes more" or "who brought more in" is very relevant, but I can't deny that I don't feel kind of sad that I didn't bring in more savings.

When I say "he's in charge" of our money, I mean that he is 10000x more financially responsible than I am.  And while I want to save for vacations and Christmas presents, money just goes through my hands like water.  I can blow $100 and have very little recollection of where it went.

So if Coach says that we need to put a set amount in savings, I'm going to do it, even if I feel pinched in terms of spending money.  Because if I want to go on a big shopping trip with my mom and sisters this winter, I guarantee that he'll extract money from one of those accounts so that I can go and have a good time.  And if I get laid off, or if he has to have a big surgery, or if something else bad happens, then he has money set aside that will easily get us through.  He's amazing like that.  I am so thankful that he is as good with money as he is.  Because I suck terribly at it.

How do you and yours handle money?

Thursday, October 7, 2010

On New Things

I've been really unhappy in my job for quite a while. I could go on and on, but to put it briefly:  There is zero room for advancement, I'm not doing what I want to do, I'm not using my degree, and the company is not on steady financial ground.

I've been applying for jobs steadily for months, and Tuesday I found out that I had landed an incredible job as a marketing rep for a wound care center.  It's ideal-I'll be convincing doctors, hospitals and nursing homes to send their patients to the wound care center I'll be working for.  I did a ton of research in to wound care centers, and they are really growing.  Also, the only other wound care centers in the region are in huge hospitals, and the wound care center I'll be working for makes the process so much easier and better for patients.  It's so much easier to "sell" something to others when you genuinely feel that its in their best interests.

So yesterday I went in to do some paperwork.  This one woman really runs the show, and she runs a super tight ship.  I was told not to be too familiar with the doctors, to respect the chain of command (in other words, her), that I would be expected to meet goals, what bonuses I could potentially earn, etc etc.

After that meeting, I was kind of a mess (sidenote: I'm on my period this week, which I am positive has TONS to do with all of this).  I had let myself get psyched out by the manager.  Weekly check-ins with her?  I go months without even seeing my boss where I'm at now!   Change is never easy, even if where you're at kinda blows.

I think this is the problem:  I haven't really used my Public Relations degree since I graduated in December of 2008.  I finally landed a really amazing "career" job, and now I'm freaking out that I'm going to suck it up.  And a hard-lining manager just freaked me out even more, I guess.

The really frustrating part was trying to tell Coach how nervous she had made me.  He just didn't get it.  He couldn't understand what the problem his mind, I had "fixed" the problem of my current, crappy job, and now I was complaining about the solution.  That old school "Men are From Mars, Women are From Venus" really isn't far off!  He finally got it though, and he grabbed my shoulders and looked right at me and said "they wouldn't have hired you if they didn't think you could do this."  Which helped.

I need to get over myself here.  Goals, check-ins, etc are part of almost any job.  And honestly, anywhere else I go is going to be better than where I'm at.  I need to stop freaking out and be ready to tackle this challenge head on.  I have to convince myself that I can do this.

Have you ever reacted like this to a new, scary job?  Is communicating with your partner sometimes more challenging than others?

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

On Affection

Coach's family is not demonstrative with affection, and neither is he.

My family, on the other hand, tells each other that they love them when leaving the house and gives lot of hugs.  I've also got 2 sisters who tell me I look cute 90% of the time.

It used to bother me that Coach tells me I look beautiful once a year (that's our going rate) and doesn't grab me for a hug/kiss combo when he gets home from work.

(Isn't it amazing how much your family background impacts current relationships?)

I've tried to be much more open minded about how Coach shows me that he loves me instead of expecting him to do so as I'd prefer.  And this definitely works.

Like....Coach leaves me the "good" leftovers, since I can't come home for lunch and he can.  Or when he got up to go to a super early practice this morning and covered me up with an extra blanket right before he left.  Or when he cooks me whatever I want for dinner every year on my "quitting smoking" anniversary.

I've read the love languages book, and I am a words of affirmations person for sure.  I've tried and tried to get Coach to understand that I need to hear him say nice things, and it just isn't him.  That stuff is really hard for him to do, and I respect that now.  I'm starting to see how much more meaningful the things that he does for me are, since they are so him.  So instead of putting my energy into how much I wish he'd do the things I want him to do, I've put my energy into seeing the things he does do.  And he blows me away every time.

Does your partner show you affection in different ways?

Thursday, September 23, 2010

On Parenting Styles

Coach and I could not come from different parenting backgrounds.  That's the bad news.  The good news is we've finally realized this which cuts down on arguments.

Last night we're going back and forth over what amount we need to counter-offer on a house (we're buying a house!).  We had a plan in place of what we would offer at which point of the negotiating process, but Coach had talked to his Dad earlier that day and was leaning more in the direction of what his Dad thought he should do.  I was p*ssed that he was deviating from our plan, when he gets a text from his mom that says "Counter at $105,000.


I was so angry because my parents go about things in a totally different way.  My parents have seen the houses we're looking at in person, I've kept them up to date on the purchasing process, they know exactly what they're doing.  And both of my parents have let both Coach and I know that they trust our judgment, that we're looking at some really great homes that are in good shape, and that we're staying in a comfortable price range.  They trust us to do the right thing, and because of that they haven't told us what to do or how to do it.  I love that about them.  And when someone swoops in and says "do this," I'm offended, because to me that says "I don't trust you, you're wrong so let me tell  you the right thing to do."

Coach's parents are pretty much the exact opposite of my parents.  They show how much they care by involving themselves in every step of the process, from telling Coach where he should get pre-approved at to coming down to the town where we live to look at houses with us and go through every single property with a fine toothed comb.  This screams mistrust and overbearing-ness to me, but to Coach it's just them showing that they care about us and want us to get the best possible home.

We both get that we're coming from 2 entirely different styles of parenting now.  We didn't all through the wedding planning process, which made it way harder than it needed to be.  But understanding this does make it somewhat easier, though I know I am still frustrated with Coach's parents.  I'm sure he's frustrated with mine.  Hopefully this will get easier, but I'm not going to lie-if his mom does this when Coach and I have kids, it's going to be like this home buying stuff except 1000x worse.

We'll cross that bridge when we come to it I think.

Do you and your spouse come from differing camps of parenting?  Has it caused conflict?

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

On Cranky Husbands

Coach started a brand new coaching job 48 hours after the wedding.  He had years of coaching experience, but he never actually had his own program.  I was so focused on him just landing a coaching job that I never really thought past him getting the job.

He is putting an enormous amount of pressure on himself to do really, really well-understandably so.  So when his athletes don't perform as well as he thinks they should, he blames himself.  But I really think he's putting undue pressure on himself, because we're only 2 weeks into the season and he's already freaking out.

I'm being fair when I say that Coach doesn't handle stress very well.  He's a control freak, and when things don't go exactly his way, he doesn't tend to deal well.  And he isn't dealing well.

I am so tempted to call his athletes and be like "WTF guys, go FASTER, my husband sucks to live with right now! "  But that obviously won't work.

This isn't the first time I've dealt with a supremely cranky husband.  I'm finding that the more you leave Coach alone, the better it all turns out.  He needs time to process, and then he's right back to his sweet, funny self.  I just need to be patient, and not lose my temper with him in the mean time.  It's hard though, when the crankiness goes on...and on...and on.

I also hate seeing him doubt himself.  I have never doubted him for a second.

How does your spouse deal with stress?  How do YOU deal with your spouse dealing with stress?

Monday, September 20, 2010

On Putting My Husband's Job First

I put Coach's job before mine a long time ago.

When I first met Coach, he was working on his master's degree with the intention of being a college coach.  He had some doubts a year into our relationship, and I insisted that he pursue his dream job at all costs.  We had a really tough year, the year that we were engaged, where we lived 2 hours apart and hoped and hoped that a coaching job would materialize.  Said coaching job did indeed materialize (1 week before our wedding, don't worry, I almost lost my d*mn mind) in a small town where my career prospects were drastically minimized.  I was kind of in career limbo that year we were engaged, too - it was hard to apply for anything when I didn't know where we'd be.

So now Coach has his dream job.  It's amazing.  Seeing him so happy, and so content and fulfilled every day rules.

But wow does it make my job look even worse than it did before!

I feel...stuck, now.  Like now I need to figure out what the f*ck I'm going to do with my life.  Which is scary, because some of the stuff I'd like to do with my life, I have a really hard time seeing how it's going to mesh with Coach's job.  Like seminary.  It's an enormous amount of money, and I can't see from where I am right now how Coach and I could every make that work together.

I don't regret for one second putting Coach's job before mine.  He's older than me, and his profession is far more choosy than mine.  Plus, I'm 24.  I'm just now starting to get a dim idea of what I want to do with my life.  Coach has had a clear purpose of exactly what he wanted to do since the day I met him, and he knew exactly what he needed to do to get there.  I love him, and I wanted to do everything in my power to help him get there.

I am proud of putting his career first when I did.  But now he has his career situated.  And I need to figure out mine, because Coach will do whatever he can to help me get where I want to be.

Putting his career first did put me in this weird, 50's throwback deal.  It made me feel so old fashioned.

Have you done anything for your partner that made you look old-fashioned, looking from the outside in?

Thursday, September 16, 2010

On Why My Husband is a Control Freak

Our pastor pronounced 5 minutes into our "pre-marital counseling" (which was 1 one hour meeting all about us and our ceremony) that Coach was "focused" and that I was more of a free spirit.  By focused he meant blatant control freak.  And Coach really is, he is an absolute control freak.

I love him anyway.

Exhibit A:

I'm in the kitchen cutting chicken.  I can see Coach squirming 3 feet away, trying not to look at what I'm doing, but after just 15 seconds he just can't take it anymore.  He jumps in, apologetically takes the knife, and finishes cutting the chicken.

Exhibit B:

We're in the car on the way to see the in-laws, discussing houses, one that needs some work in particular.  I'm saying how we can do the work together and we can totally handle it, and he bursts out saying, "but there's so much work I'd have to do!"  I'm all, "YOU'D have to do?" And then it dawned on me.  He's such a control freak  that he wasn't going to let me touch that house.  I have construction experience-I worked on set crew for all of high school and I helped remodel the house I'm living in now, so I was totally offended.  Coach jumped in and said "but I'd let you pull up carpet, and I'd let you do the landscaping."

Oh thanks babe.

The landscaping.  Awesome.

To be fair, he's a perfectionist, and I'm just not (only when it comes to the stuff I sew, then I turn into a freak).  I'm the "free spirit" and he's "focused."

Though I prefer control freak when it comes to him.

Anyway, I try to not take any of this personally and just understand that that's just Coach, that's just the way he is and he isn't tearing down the way I do things.  Not going to lie, I 100% took it personally at first, but I'm working on it.  It occasionally p*sses me off, but then I just think about how hysterical it is.

Besides, I don't let him TOUCH the laundry.  That's my department.

Why I'm blogging Anonymously

I've been blogging publicly for a year and a half now.  I had a beautiful wedding in July, and absolutely LOVE being married.

But a big part of my life was missing from my public blog.  My mother-in-law, my grandmother and my husband were all loyal readers, which is wonderful.


While my mother-in-law might be (and she certainly is) one of the nicest people I have ever met, after 12 hours with that woman, I want to run away screaming.

My grandmother is a pillar of wisdom and strength, but the last thing that woman needs is to hear about her granddaughter's sex life.

And my husband?  My wonderful, handsome, loving, quirky, hilarious husband?  He hates being blogged about, period.

So lots was missing from my last blog.  This blog will give me space to say what I really think about my mother-in-law going house hunting with us (that was not a good afternoon), or how my husband leaving clean dishes in the drying rack can make me want to smack him.  Among other things!

All in all, my marriage is far from perfect.  I wouldn't have it any other way.