It’s Not About the Fajitas
I diced, chopped, sliced, and sautéed to my heart’s content. The chicken sizzled as it hit the pan, the tortillas were keeping warm in the oven. Twenty minutes later, dinner was served.
Sixty minutes after we finished, my husband came home. He saw the meal I had prepared, the one the kids and I had enjoyed more than an hour before, and apologetically said he wasn’t hungry. I just smiled and didn’t say a thing. His schedule had been crazy all week. No big deal, right?
Until 90 minutes later.
The kids were in bed and we were kicking up our feet for the night. My dear husband walked in to the kitchen and poured a bowl of cereal. I heard the familiar crunch of the bag, and the sound stopped me in my reading. Oh, no he didn’t.
But he did. As he brought his bowl to the living room, cluelessly crunching along the way, I simmered. When he caught my glare, he asked, “Are you okay?”
“Fine,” I muttered. But with a glance from me to the bowl, it hit him.
“Sorry,” he said. “I really wasn’t thinking.”
It wasn’t about the fajitas. It was about the effort I put out to make my family a nice meal. To me, the bowl of cereal represented his lack of appreciation. To him? It was just a quick snack. A bit of comfort food after a long day.
So often in marriage, the little annoyances, or even moments we feel disrespected, are actually just moments of miscommunication. He said one thing, you heard (or better yet, felt) something entirely different. These aren’t intentional jabs meant to leave scars. Sometimes it’s just two different points of view, other times it’s an “I really wasn’t thinking” moment.
Instead of stewing over these moments, let’s remember our spouses aren’t our enemies. Look at the entire situation (What was their day like? Are there any distractions around them?) and what we already know about our spouses (Is he normally kind and thoughtful?) before jumping to conclusions.
The good stuff: A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion. (Proverbs 18:2)
Action points: The next time your spouse does something that gets your blood boiling, stop. Before saying anything, ask yourself two things: Does this fit with who I know my spouse is? Is there something going on with them under the surface?
Visit the FamilyLife® Website