Well, now that I’ve spent the last few posts complaining about all the ways my hubby drives me crazy, it’s only fair that I call myself onto the mat as well. Plus it’s probably time to do what my “reboot this marriage” tag line says and start trying to fix some of this stuff. Sad to say, but it took a Berenstain Bears’ book called The Blame Game to put me back on track. How’s that for fucked up? My son’s library book has a stronger conscience than I do. Yikes.
So let me start by saying that one really great way to reboot your marriage is to start a blog about it, at least if you’re me. No sooner had I come up with the idea for this blog that Ken and I started getting along better. Although when I asked him why things had lightened up, he said, “Simple. You’re treating me better.”
“You’ve been a lot nicer to me lately,” he said. “And when you’re nicer to me, it makes me want to be nicer to you.”
He raises a good point, my hubby. And I have to admit that I was pretty hellish there for a few weeks. As my horoscope today advised, I needed to “tame the beast within.”
Oh, yes, the beast otherwise referred to as Anger. God, almighty, I could write a thesis about anger and it’s role in married-with-kids life, but for now, let’s just keep it simple and note that I’m not the only one struggling with her. And as far as I can tell, a lot of it comes back to the fact that our generation was brought up to believe we could have it all–a career and a family–even though we were never actually given the logistical support to pull it off. So instead, we itch for change, hope for more than ever actually happens, and spend the rest of our time mired in guilt and regret about our parenting, our job or both.
So I’ve started reading a few books to help me navigate my way through this crazy mess: Ayelet Waldeman’s Bad Mother and David Code’s To Raise Happy Kids, Put Your Marriage First. I’m still in the opening pages of each, but man, good stuff. I wish someone had told me to read this shit earlier instead of all that how-to-get-your-child-to-sleep and what-you’re-doing-wrong-with-your-kids crap.
In the meantime, I continue to watch and wonder about the different ways we women attempt to manage these crazy married-with-young-kids times. Especially when we’re trying to wrestle our careers back off the ground, and/or have finally snapped from years of sleep deprivation and surging hormones. And what happens when you hit 40 (like I did this past year) and are ready to start leading your own life again? Of course it’s not all hubby’s fault. But you know, he can be a pretty easy target for the 800,000 frustrations we face every day.
So maybe the first trick is to start with a hubby who’ll actually let you pull off your own blog (see “Let’s make a deal” below). Because he’s gotta have a pretty good sense of humor if he’s OK with opening a window on your crazy lives.
And then the second trick, of course, has got to be humor. Lots of it, baby. Take it from me: when your family comes from the Balkans, where war and poverty are par for the course, you realize pretty damn quickly that about the only thing going in your favor is some pretty wicked black humor.
So it is with Married Life with Young Kids. Cause I gotta tell you, keeping your marriage afloat when you’ve got little ones ain’t always pretty. But it is necessary.
So buckle up and here we go.