The five worded sentence blasted a hole through any valid points I had made. I was rendered powerless and in need of a good come back, I retaliated with a few measly tears. This was far from a substantial response for a succinct summary of the state of affairs delivered by my hubby. The stark reality of what my behaviour had caused was revealed and I could do nothing to stop the torrent of flashbacks. I was forced to trace my steps from when we walked the honeymoon shores to the present day, only to discover that I had been the instigator of each argument that we had. This is not to say that I had not had valid points however, I had become a chartered accountant of wrongs.
A record of wrongs; a complete, unadulterated, uncensored account of things that have been done incorrectly and unjustly towards you. It is a mental list which exists to be used as a point of reference during arguments or as an excuse not to act in a loving way towards your beloved.
I spent so much time keeping an account of what has gone wrong in my marriage that it became a full time job. It consumed me totally. Who would have guessed that keeping a log of your husband’s should have, could have, would have’s would have been a full time job. I didn’t constantly nag but whenever I had a point to make it was accompanied with an account of wrong doings. If you become a real professional you will extend this beyond your beloved and extend it to friends, family and if you really want to go for it, LIFE itself will have wronged you.
It must have started with little things like noticing how often he would leave empty bottles of water decorating the bedroom or his shoes in the middle of the floor. I would over look those issues, opting to ‘keep quiet’ rather than starting a heated debate. Unknown to me, my conscious acted as a bank teller. It would transfer the incident to the bank of wrongs and later be used as evidence for something or even worse as a trigger to fly off the handle about a completely unrelated topic. I still believe that some things are not worth conducting a boardroom meeting over but if I have learnt that if I am opting out of the meeting, I must also opt out of writing a memo.
It’s hard work loving someone who keeps a record of wrongs, no one wants to be constantly measured against what they did in the past. Who wants to be married to a measuring tape wife or husband? It is condescending and robs that person of their confidence to love you. Arguments become increasingly difficult as the record of wrongs is pulled out to act as justification, explanation and illustration. The worst thing about it, is that your spouse becomes powerless as all that you are reiterating to them is true. You have succeeded in backing them up into a corner and they have nowhere to run to. No matter how valid their point was, presenting an evidence of bad decisions reduces their point to nothing.
As a chartered account of wrongs you naturally become an ungrateful person, so busy keeping an accurate account of what is wrong that you don’t look at what is right. Your beloved’s efforts go unnoticed no matter how far they go to please you. Every ‘how are you’ is followed by a list of ‘not rights’. No effort is ever enough as you are constantly comparing them to your expectation and adding every failed attempt to your collection. Learning to manage your expectations is tricky business, as it’s never good not to expect anything but to expect too much is to put unnecessary pressure on your beloved. I am making serious attempts to live a life that counts my blessings and not my unmet expectations. Yes, I don’t have the mansion or the Buggatti Veyron that I desire and sometimes I do wander how and when we will get there BUT RIGHT NOW, we have a lovely roof over our heads, food in the fridge and an economical car that gets us from A to B. Yes, my hubby is Mr Logical and I am Mrs Emotional but we are rubbing off on each other to make the perfect team.
My vivid imagination has created a restart button which I choose to press daily as it erases my emotional hard drive of the wrongs against me and the wrongs I made. I understand that this sounds idealistic but keeping a record of wrongs illustrates immaturity and an inability to construct convincing arguments, independent of diminishing another’s confidence. Slowly but surely, I am adopting some of the logic my husband has to make sense of what it is that I truly want to say. It’s not easy to stop your mind from searching your hard drive for past viruses but you can make a choice. The choice to forgive and forget will appear like a rainbow after a storm, with a pot of freedom to love freely at the end of it.
I realise that I am putting my head on the line here. I know that this could be used as evidence later in the argument arena BUT I am so convicted about this nasty habit that I need it to be carved into the hall of blogging fame. Let this entry be an official letter of withdrawal from the Royal Bank of Wrongs and an investment in Alliance and Loving.
By: Susan Emina