Recycled Love

Love in Marriage: 365 Reasons I Love My Husband

Judith Heaney

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Do you have chores neither you nor your spouse prefer and therefore sometimes tend to ignore? Until you can’t. We have a few of them: cleaning out the fridge (though that tends to happen weekly because of trash day), scooping out the cat’s litter box, folding the clean laundry, and cleaning the toilet bowls, just to name a few. But I think the one we both put off for as long as possible is rinsing out certain recyclable containers. Specifically, Hershey syrup bottles and Nutella snack pack containers.

Cleaning out the Nutella packs = yuck! That hazelnut spread sticks like some super paste to the sides of each container.

Hazelnut Spread — good, but oh, so sticky! (photo: Silvia)

But one of has to do it, especially once they’ve multiplied on the countertop by the sink like a family of rabbits. And there is one major difference between David and I when it comes to clutter like this and that is he doesn’t tend to notice it until it gets in his way of doing something. Me, on the other hand, am hyper aware of pretty much any clutter. Our brains just work differently, and that is an area we’ve had to work on accepting and understanding in and with each other. It hasn’t always been easy because I think as human beings even though we embrace our individuality, we sometimes expect other people in our lives, especially a spouse, to do things the way we do, to notice things like we do, and to approach life the same way we do.

How boring would that be though, right?

Reason 3 of 365

In our 20 years together, I’ve learned that expectations need to be expressed; they don’t work if they’re implied or not communicated. That can lead to a build up of frustration that creates arguments over what is really a small thing. But if we let it fester, it begins to feel like something bigger than it actually is. I know this because I am guilty of this.

If you’re a fan of the sit-com, Everybody Loves Raymond, you may remember one of their most highly acclaimed episodes involving a suitcase deposited on the landing of their stairs that sits there for weeks because neither Ray nor Debra are willing to carry it upstairs. It becomes the source of a passive aggressive standoff between them, despite advice from family to simply deal with the simple…

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