Monday, July 19, 2010

Mrs. Independent

I'm on the "other side" now.  The other side of single.  The other side of me.  After six months, I feel like I can start to sort out the transition from single to married.

I had always thought of myself as fairly independent.  Mostly, I was independent by necessity.  I learned how to deal with car issues like adding oil, changing flats, etc.  Sometimes I was independent by choice, like when I hitchhiked through the German countryside (think farmers wearing lederhosen).

When Mr. Palindrome was deployed, I might think, "Well crap, I wish he was here," but within 5 seconds I would figure out a way to pull a Tim Gunn to make it work.  I had to hold it together to think through solving the problem.

Shortly after getting married, I was in a car accident.  I called Mr. Palindrome 27 times, willing him to pick up the phone and come help me.  I was a hot mess - tears, cussing, hopped up on cold medicine.  I'd only been married a few months and already I was desperately calling him instead of thinking through a plan myself.  When I gave up on him answering the phone, I started thinking through the steps of what to do.  Call a tow truck.  Decide on a repair shop.  Arrange transportation from the shop to my office.  And I calmed down.  I could do this, after all I'd done it before without Mr. Palindrome.

I'm not afraid of work.  In fact, I take pride as a self described work horse.  I'll put down mulch, I'll carry my weight during moves, I'll start at 7 am - but since being married I find myself thinking, "That's a job for Mr. Palindrome," about anything that is kindof heavy or kindof tricky.   I'll look at the trash and think, "Wow, that's full, but that's Mr. Palindrome's job." So I stuff it a little fuller and figure he'll take it out when he gets home.  I've found myself wondering if I'm trapped in social gender constructs? Or if it's my human nature of wanting to take the easy route?  Now that there are some muscles around, why struggle up the stairs with a heavy load?   Having a husband can feel like having a private heavy lifter at my beck and call. 

Have you felt less independent since getting married?  Why do you think that would be?  Sometimes I think it's a good thing because we're learning how to be a team.  Sometimes I feel like I'm losing a part of myself.
(Reflective self portrait)


  1. YES!

    After over a year of long-distance I was really comfortable being independent, and didn't think married would drastically change that.
    But then we got married, and started learning how to share...everything. It didn't help that we were(are) living in his hometown--totally foreign/uncomfortable to me and comfortable for him.

    I've lost a bit of that independence. And he definitely noticed!

    Thanks for the reminder to sometimes just figure it out myself and share it with E at the end of the day.
    I know he'll appreciate it (especially because he's away from home a good deal of this summer, leaving me to fend for myself!)

  2. Oh my gosh, your hair looks so cute short!

    I'm sort of the same way as you, if there's something that I feel is the hubs job, I'll just wait and let him take care of it. But I think it's a two way street, since I know he will just let something that's "my job" go by the wayside too. I like your thought that it's part of being a team, after all, in football the kicker doesn't do the job of the quarterback, and vise versa.

  3. I'm in a similar situation to what Morgan described - there are definitely things that the Mister does and things that I do. I don't know if it's necessarily better or worse, but it's a good thing to be aware of!