AFTER 40 YEARS ◽ MARRIAGE

After being married for decades, there are some things we just realize and some things we just know.  And one of those things is that when either of us is tired, we are snappy.

“Where did you put that paper I just printed?”

“What paper?  I haven’t seen any paper.”

“Arggghhh, you heard the printer going and you were just in that room, and now the paper’s gone.”

“What’s the matter with you?  Your eyes look tired.  Maybe you need a nap.”

Do some conversations similar to the one above seem familiar?  One of us starts falling apart at the seams and starts accusing the other of something small (or big) and we just know they’re the one to blame.  When in reality, we’re just simply tired.

“I’m going to lie down a few minutes, I’m tired.”

“Seriously?  You slept in, this morning.”

“I feel so groggy.”

“Okay, go lie down.  I’ve got to unload the dishwasher, put away clothes, and get dinner.  Wish I could take a nap.”

That’s what I like to call marriage martyrdom.  It’s where we take on the attitude of a martyr, when we feel as though the loads are unshared, and we become incensed and angry that he needs a nap!  But, it happens.

Naps are necessary in our house, especially with him.  I don’t need them very often, but sometimes I take them, too.  I’ve pushed him before to keep going when he’s tired, and we both have suffered because of it.  Words slip out, attitudes deteriorate, and fun evenings end up in angry bedtimes.  I’ve also pushed myself when I need to lie down for a few, and yes – I got a lot done – but my crappy attitude then turns into releasing condescending words toward him, and adjusting a halo on my head, for me.  And halos are for angels, not for disgruntled wives.

Being snappy to each other isn’t a fun conversation.  Snappy innocent words then become mean, hateful jabs.

Taking a nap is such a simple thing and usually takes no more than 30 minutes, and yet it saves hours of angst and anger.  In fact, very often he rises with energy ready to go, and I’m pleasantly surprised at his kind demeanor. 

He told me today that I look tired, and I had just snapped at him.  So I’m going to take note and go lie down for 15 minutes so that I can rise, too, with a kind demeanor, and we can have a happy night instead of a crappy one.

Snappy, crappy, or happy…sometimes we just need a little nappy.

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Snappy and Nappy
by Marcy Lytle

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