or is it?
I started the last post with the intention of writing on this. And that grief story of my Mom’s last Mother’s Day gift spilled out- as did my tears and I cried inappropriately at work, harder than I have here ever. [and while writing this post I cried a bunch again. My office door is going to need to stay shut for a while now, as I do not cry gracefully :S hopefully office neighbors couldn’t hear all the nose blowing…oh well]
The lesson I learned about my grief this year was through a fight with poor Greg. He’s been great this past week- giving me tons of space if I asked or being there to hang out even if I think he’d rather be watching baseball. He didn’t force conversations but would have listened had I wanted to talk. All in all it went pretty well.
Friday came and went. We traveled to see my favorite band play a double set concert in Chicago on Saturday and it was amazing. On Sunday we were both home, a little tired from the night before’s outtings and Greg got frustrated. Now, I still maintain my innocence in what started this fight. While at times, I am definitely known for not knowing when I’m hungry and suffering from a Krings tradition of getting incredibly grumpy from not eating. That does happen to me, and I know I’m not fun to be around then. That said, this did not happen on Sunday, but Greg got mad at me for not making myself a meal.
Greg does almost all the cooking at our house. He’s great at it, and often really enjoys it as a hobby. I do understand that he doesn’t always LOVE cooking- but he would almost always rather prepare something for a meal instead of snacking on something easy or throwing together a sandwich.
Me? Not so much. I’d rather have a bowl of cereal. Thats about all there is to it for me. I don’t like to do dishes so why would I dirty them. I’m not that picky- I can eat the same thing multiple meals, multiple days in a row and be quite content.
On Sunday, Greg got mad at me for feeling like he had to make me lunch or I wouldn’t eat or I would just have cereal or… whatever. I don’t know really.I’m not sure quite where it came from, but I felt awful that he would think I was that demanding. We have different food standards, and meal concepts, and while I always appreciate the delicious meals he prepares, it is always fancy to me, because I could have had cereal and been happy. I came into the kitchen to help clean up dishes from before we left for the concert and he left the kitchen. I was a little hurt, but did all the cleaning myself and then left the room. He went back into the kitchen and started cooking. I was more hurt by his obvious avoidance, and went into our room to hide about it a little. I didn’t want to be blowing things out of proportion, but I was definitely feeling like he was mad, and not telling me. And when he came and found me, he was mad. He was mad for the things he built up in his head that I must have thought. I’ve been there before too- its why communication is important. Anyways, so we were having it out. Greg’s built up Holly was quite the bitch and that really hurt me. I didn’t understand what I had done wrong or why he was so mad or being angry at me. I was hurt. Actually, the situation ended that day with me apologizing for things I didn’t do or say, and him not apologizing for attributing those horrible things to me. I don’t know if he realizes he didn’t apologize or own any of it, but I do and that is still hanging with me about it a little.
Anyways, the fight is not the point of this post. What came out of it, when I was “done” with my grieving week, is that he can’t be mad at me about how I learned to take care of myself. Growing up, both my parents ran their own businesses. This was different for my siblings where my mom stayed home and did things like, make cookies or doughnuts for them as after school snacks (and taught my siblings a lot of these kitchen skills). Me, not so much, and that was fine. As I got older, my mom got sick. She sold her business and focused on taking care of her. Makes sense,we all did. And I don’t regret it or wish it happened differently. But I did start taking care of myself, and my meals at around age 15. I ate a lot of freezer food, sandwiches, cereal and take out. Thats what I knew how to do. And that didn’t change much as I aged. Especially in that, once I was living on my own and out of the dorms, I developed a serious stomach condition where everything but liquids made me sick. Cooking was never a skill I learned, nor had motivation too. Anyways, realizing this about myself was important I think for both Greg and me. I cannot fault myself for the circumstances where one generally learns these skills, and therefore, neither should he. I now understand that its probably because of these circumstances that I avoid cooking so much. My hatred for grocery stores and shopping isn’t just a dislike for florescent lights but likely stems from the fact that that was my job once my mom got too sick. It was a task that caused me a lot of anxiety as I didn’t quite know what was needed ever and I got a lot of pity stares from the small town people who felt bad that I had to take over this chore. Whatever, not that big of a deal, but I’m sure that is where my anxiety reaction to stores stems from.
I don’t have a lot of patience, in general. I hate being bad at things, feeling incompetent and messing up. Those are things that make me feel badly about myself. Combined those with the grief realizations I had, and I now understand my food reactions a little better. I hope Greg does too, so we can avoid the built up frustration spaces that allow us to think such horrible untrue things. It is something I’m willing to work on, and these realizations do help. Awareness is always better. But I know I need to learn it in a safe place, where I don’t have to feel shame if I screw up- which is my natural reaction. Hopefully its something I can learn from Greg and it can be fun… but I see the challenges of that too. Anyways, something to think about and something I learned from my “grief week” this year.