Ch-ch-ch-ch-Changes

Honestly, I don’t even know where to begin with the changes, growth or both that are going on in this house. As you know, I started writing this blog in response to what I thought, still think, is my husband’s Mid-Life Crisis. He purchased a 2000 Mercedes Convertible, with no input from yours truly.

I took this as time for change. A good excuse to turn around the hum drums for something new. This Pisces does not fair well with confrontation, I embrace. Correction: Hissy fitting followed by embrace!

The intention was that we could spend some much-needed couple time together, taking rides in the country and what not. He has a motorcycle that has always been his source of decompression. I did my time on the back of a bike and have no desire to do it today, hence his thought process for the car. He can still get that wind in your hair feeling he gets from his bike, but instead of being with the Wild Hogs, he can be with me. Which is such a better choice… just saying.

That being said, fast forward to last weekend. He has been doing a major remodeling project on our home. Of course the end result will be beautiful as always, it’s getting to the end that is so UGLY. He has his job, a side business and this project all going on at once. Ask for help did you say? No thank you, there is no one else on the planet capable of doing things the right way. That’s the price you pay when you’re a perfectionist.

Apparently, now that the pressure is mounting he is noticing what I’m NOT doing…my “wifely duties.” According to Ward Cleaver, I’m always on the computer, there is no love going into the dinners and I’m not paying attention to him. Ok, guilty as charged, but Ward isn’t the only one with a list.

Hey, let’s face it, no one likes hearing these things about themselves, but sometimes they are necessary to open up the dialog. Even if “dialog” means kicking and screaming. 

I will admit to having a hot and heavy affair with my MacBook Pro! My blog is fulfilling the emotional needs that aren’t being met in my house and I am one Porn Site away from being fully satisfied. Mac can give me everything I want and need, without ever leaving the chair!  Mac is new, fun, interesting and fulfilling, but he’s also hurting the person I love. Time for some more changes.

Needless to say this lead to a heated discussion, loaded with hurt feelings, emotions and a frozen ham. Yes, a frozen fossilized ham! My hubby told me to sit down he wanted to “show” me something. 20 years ago this had a whole other meaning, so my excitement quickly turned to disappointment. 

He proceeds to the kitchen and walks back in with a ham. “Look at the date, what does it say?” Drum roll please….2001. “What do you think about that?” Hmm, nothing that wouldn’t be held against me in a Court of law that’s for sure.

Silence on this end due to the shock that my husband was holding a frozen ham in our living room and the horror that I was thinking about bludgeoning him with it. I silently left to go food shopping. No ham was purchased.

Now, in my defense, it was a free ham I got for spending so much money at the store or something. I would never eat it in a million years (or at least 11), but it was “free.” I’m sure my intention was to donate it to a food cupboard, but even good intentions can go bad. I was busy with the kids who were 6 & 8 when that frozen swine crossed the threshold. Jeez, now I’m starting to feel bad for not including it on the Christmas Card!

So, for 11 years it’s been sitting in the back of the freezer watching all the other food come and go. This ham was on death row waiting for a pardon, which was officially denied last Sunday when it hit the trash can….HARD. Following the execution, my hubby left for a week-long motorcycle trip to Nova Scotia, giving us both some much-needed time to gather our thoughts.

Whew, was I dwelling on the ham, which at this point was being referred to as the F’ing ham around these parts. Needless to say the whole presentation of the ham as if it were some sort of trump card infuriated me. Seriously, if he knew it was in there why the hell didn’t he get rid of it? Was he just waiting for the perfect opportunity to slam me with the out dated ham? Was this a premeditated move to make me feel bad? Who was this man with the ham? Not my husband that’s for sure. Ugh, the downside of change and growth has entered the building. 

There’s no one-size-fits-all answer in matters of personal development, and one person may need to change fundamentally where another just needs to grow in a particular area. So what do you do when both are suddenly noticeable in your life? Well, you have to decide if you want to be “right”, “happy” or “compromise.”  My husband is not here to teach me lessons, anymore than I am here to change him, however we are both here to learn through our growth. The difficult part comes in the willingness to wait-up if the other falls behind….growth has a speed of its own folks.

The ham obviously represents several different things, but most importantly …. neglect. That frozen slab of ham ass reminded me that when it entered the freezer, so did my identity. The freezer door closed and I became engaged in the lives of my children and disengaged in being a woman. As much as I tried to balance the different roles in my life, something or someone was bound to be neglected….ME.

Now that the kids have left me in the dust, I’ve been trying to resurrect ME back into the world, but I’ve been lost. Slowly I’ve been growing into the new ME through writing. My new challenge is balancing what I have grown to love, with the man I love.

He informed me that… “there is nothing sexier than confidence, independence and your own interests. So, if it makes you happy do it, but don’t forget about me.”  Sounds like a plan! 

Now it’s time to re-engage the ME back into US and watch the wonderfulness unfold so we can …. Enjoy the Ride! …. TOGETHER. 

29 responses

  1. free penny press | Reply

    I read this and had to force that damned knot that formed in my throat down.. After 5 kids, a career and 20 yrs, my ex lost touch and stayed lost.. I’ll spare all the gory details but will say i spent the past 4 yrs digging deep into who I really am, what are my likes, etc and dammit I may be alone but I like me.. You and him just got a bit off the trail but I see love and that my friend will wind you back every time.. Love the happy, smiley picture.. Life is beautiful !!!

    1. Thank you so much! I almost missed seeing that love. It took the look on his face when he was holding that ham for me to see the pain in his eyes…so freaking crazy, but powerful.
      I’m so glad you found you too…you are wonderful : )

  2. Wow. I can so relate. I love the ending. And the ham. That ham served a much higher purpose than its original intent. Enjoy the journey back to you!

    1. You are so right! That ham was so much better for everyone…off the table! As crazy as it that sounds, it’s true.

  3. Wow. I don’t know where to start, Tops. All of it is so true, so perfect. Losing yourself in blogging — guilty (I do it because of baseball, which is on TV now. Who’s playing? Who cares.)

    I think you came around to the right way of looking at things in the end. In your wonderful ending.

    But I couldn’t help wondering if we could combine our husbands. Yours is a perfectionist who does work around the house. Mine is a lawyer and I fear it whenever he picks up a tool. But I cannot blog about this because he read it just often enough…

    Sigh.

    A memorable post, Tops. Truly memorable.

  4. Where to begin?

    My youngest turned 21 back in January. My wife and I have been so engrossed in raising three kids and in advancing our careers and keeping a roof over our heads, etc, that we’ve consistently put ourselves in last place. Now that life has rewarded us with the chance to get back to who we once were, we aren’t those people anymore.

    It’s a dangerous time. We’re kind of lost at times and still quite busy with our lives. It’s possible to grow apart though we were striving towards the same goals.

    Blog writing for me has become something of an obsession, and most certainly a creative outlet. I enjoy it very much. Still, it’s a solitary pursuit which I share with many others. My wife occasionally reads my posts, but doing so is not too high on her list.

    I’m happy to read of your ch-ch-ch-ch-changes. (That was a great song!).

    1. Wow! You hit the nail on the head. My youngest is 17 and very independent (other than being a slob) so I feel like I was suddenly handed a pink slip. What I missed was that my husband has been waiting for me to get laid-off and I didn’t see it. I am trying to balance it all, but it’s not easy. Start dating your wife again…Yes, it is a great song : )

      1. People don’t realize what a long road it is, when they’re not on it themselves, or they just got on it and have decadesyert to drive.

        It’s harder than I would have imagined. Our lives are complicated by the sizeable chunk of our take-home income that goes to my daughter’s college, and by the grandkids (courtesy of my oldest), who are at my house several days each week.

        It’s funny, I would’ve sworn I knew what life would be like for us at this time, but I was wrong on just about every count. Yet, I sit here and ponder retirement in 12 years or so and I think I know what THAT will be like!

  5. Are you friggin kidding me??? That bastard ham knew what life it was taking on when it entered the freezer (sort of a porky angelic presence). DO NOT feel responsible for its death, DO NOT! If not ham, a bag of peas.

    1. Hahahaha…it did if it knew it was coming into this house! For god sakes it saw my face when it got in the basket!

  6. You might try one of those canned hams in the future, the ones without an expiration date. You can then neglect the ham without guilt. Seriously, your points about balance are ones I can relate to too. Balance is a tricky thing, often elusive, but possible.

    1. Hahahaha! Jeez the earth will be in ashes and the can hams will be the only survivors. Balance in so tough, but you’re right it is possible with some clever thinking…I’m working on it!

      1. Just noticed the Bowie reference – what a great song!

  7. I want to write an essay in response to this wonderful post. We women are really good at disappearing up the orifice of the lives of the ones we care for. As a result we forget to care for ourselves and it’s a skill we need to relearn, something that takes time and training. And dammit, it’s not selfish, anymore so than having a freezer full of decade old ham or icicles. Guilt may have it’s place (maybe, I think?!/), but not on this journey.

    1. Thanks Judy! I refuse to feel guilty, no reason. You had to see his face with that ham…he was hurting too and I didn’t see it. When he got back from his trip, he was ready to talk (without props) and so much was discovered by both.

  8. We will discover ourselves. We fulfill so many roles and we eventually find who we are. It is a journey, We raise a curtain (right Curtain?), we let the wind blow our hair, we raise our kids, we become homemakers, and we will become strong independent and confident woman of a certain age… Love this blog, but I think I may have to go clean out my freezer… and rediscover what else is frozen in there that may be me. DAF

    1. Hahahaha! I’m not ready to go back in just yet!

  9. Thanks for the like this morning! I’ve got a very special treat for you in a post that will be going up in 20 minutes – including two exclusive awards I’m offering to you and only you!

    1. Well, that certainly got my attention..it’s like Christmas!

  10. Wow, I never thought ham could signify so much. My ham and cheese sandwich is getting funny looks from me now
    That was a wonderful post 🙂

    1. Thank you! Hahahaha I will never look at ham the same way….ever.

  11. Lisa, your blog just keeps getting better & better! Every married couple should read this one! You should send hubby down here, he’d probably have to be put in a mental facility if he saw the dates on some of the food items in the freezer or cabinets! I lost me for a long time and then found myself when I hit 40. Now I’m lost in this injury that has kept me from living my life. So even though it’s different in circumstance, I can still relate & look forward to the journey back. I know you two will be fine, I’ve always though of you as one of the perfect couples! Xoxo

  12. First I’d like to thank your husband for leaving because if he were here you never would have penned this GREAT ESSAY. I mean it, your writing has become like Sea Biscuit jumping the gate. Neglect is a funny word and used too loosely. I can’t imagine that’s really what you’re doing. So you had an expired ham, big deal. What about him, he sounds like a ham in his own right. You were given a gift (writing) that you have just gotten around to unwrap and he, with all due respect since he is your husband, should just stay out of the freezer.
    As far as Mac goes, he’s pretty dependable, I know. Well done.

    1. I actually thought about the case going before Judge Judy. Seriously, you have an outdated ham and some unloved dinners. NEXT! Even he had to agree with the insanity of it all…please.
      He was a different man when he returned and the bottom line is he wants me to be happy, but he wants to be part of the happiness. I think I can handle it.

  13. Michelle Gillies | Reply

    I think you just held up a mirror to a whole lot of us. Not all of us are going to like what we see. Hopefully, you have inspired us to work on that reflection.

  14. Nothing in life is a coincidence. Not even that ham. 😉
    Great post Lisa! Kudos!

  15. Very profound. While men go through their mid life crisis I think women go through a change as well. We grow into the person we were always meant to be. Sometimes it’s hard for each partner to accept the changes, keep up with the changes or even want the changes in our partners. But life is change, so if we want to stay above ground we need to keep adapting to the changes. My husband doesn’t always like the person I’m growing into either & he doesn’t like the feeling of being neglected as I grow into this new person. That’s okay, sometimes I don’t like the “old fart” he’s growing into either! 🙂

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