I learned from this exercise that even though I may wish my husband to be a bit more thoughtful when it comes to helping me with strollers or what not, he isn’t thoughtless. In fact, I think I’m very fortunate to have a man who is thoughtful and expresses it on a daily basis.
Today’s exercise was to reach out to my DH and just ask him how his day was going and if he needed anything. This was a rather easy I assignment I thought. Since the first day we became an item, we’ve contacted each other at least once a day to see how each other was. It has become so routine that the day doesn’t seem complete without a touchbase call/text/email.
Well, I suppose I got a smug about this exercise. See today, I went to the doctor’s office for my post surgical follow up. It also turned into my annual physical. As I sat there in my little paper gown waiting for the sonographer, I thought about how this doctor’s appointment now counts as ‘me’ time for me. I chuckled and thought I wouldn’t have thought that a year ago but I wouldn’t change a thing.
While waiting, I decided to send my DH a text to see how he was doing and if he needed anything. I wanted him to know that I was focusing on him and not BG or his parenting skills so I purposely only asked him about himself.
All was going well and I felt very good about this exercise until I received a text asking when I would be returning home. I was at the doctor’s longer than usual because 1-the doctor wanted to complete my yearly physical which required a sonogram and 2-a pregnant patient fell ill and every nurse was pulled into her exam room to attend to her until the paramedics came.
DH texted me saying that he would appreciate a status update as he needed to go downtown. “I’m just asking you to be considerate of my time and let me know if you’ll be later so I can call and reschedule. I just need you to manage your time better.” My initial reaction was to be upset. Where did he think I was? Did he think I was having fun? Here I am laughing about how spending time in stirrups was not a part of my ‘me’ time and he’s scolding me for forgetting he had to be somewhere and for me being late. And who is he to tell me about time management? He’s always late for everything.
I sat there flabbergasted but by the time I was finished with my appointment and in the car on my way home, I calmed down a bit. By the time I arrived home I wasn’t angry or hurt. I realized that today’s exercise was about thoughtfulness and all my husband was asking of me was to be a bit thoughtful and here was an example of me not being thoughtful. Yes, one can argue, I was in a circumstance that was out of my control but that wasn’t the point. I could have called him and let him know I was running late but I didn’t think of it. I was in la la land savoring and enjoying the personal time even if it was at a doctor’s office.
Displaying thoughtfulness by asking each other how our day is going may come natural for us but that doesn’t mean we can’t improve on thoughtful gestures. Just as I would like DH to be more considerate with helping me unpack and pack our BG in and out of the car is a sign of thoughtfulness, managing my husband’s needs and desires while juggling BG’s and my own desires is thoughtfulness.