Picking Between Battles to Fight and Ignore

13 May

The one thing that’s hit me hard in my face the past couple of months is that peace of mind, while very attainable, comes at the cost of compromise a lot of the times. It’s seldom a my way or the highway scenario not because that’s impossible, but because it’s really not practical or helpful for that matter. It’s a concept I’m learning how to deal with because more often than not, it’s my peace of mind which I seek comfort in at the end of the day. And compromise, by default, indicates that you aren’t necessarily going to get your way, if at all sometimes.

To have a substandard clean house versus having a clean house the way you want it to be…
To have house help who are infamous for doing things the way they want to despite training and supervision versus having no house help at all…
To find objects in positions xyz because you want them in positions xyz versus finding them dusted and cleaned but not in positions xyz thanks to said house helps and their habits…
To do all the cleaning and cooking yourself just the way you like it versus not finding your standards matched up to but with help which is a blessing in its own way…
To inculcate the habit of picking up after oneself at the cost of a squabble or two versus doing the picking up yourself and getting rewarded with peace (which is an art and comes after much practice, I tell you!)…
To have your own peace time to do as you wish, when you wish versus rushing to get things done just in time for the house help to arrive…

The list of compromise and battles is ohmygawwwwd endless. Every day holds a new surprise, if you ask me. Whether it’s sounding like a broken record to the guy who cleans your house, to the point where you hate yourself for opening your mouth more than you hate his daydreamy attitude, or putting your hands up and giving up at the cost of not having things the way you want them, is such a bargain of both mental peace and the need to have things in a particular way.

I’m not sure it’s about being rigid as much as it is about not understanding just why it is so difficult to do the regular stuff, especially like keeping things back from where they were picked up at. This really isn’t even a husband-bashing post because one thing’s clear – I’m used to a certain way of doing things, and he, well, let’s just say the traces of his bachelor days pop up from time to time as some sort of brotherhood assurance or whatever the silly reason may be. It’s a line we have to draw ourselves and walk equidistant to arrive at a point where we learn to give and take some. It’s a task nonetheless and we’ve had our fair share of squabbles…change isn’t so easy to handle especially when each of us believes we’re right. In my honest opinion, men, if left to themselves, would make a fine man-cave out of their surroundings where everything’s within reach and all over the place. No, I don’t hate men, but this is something which has more truth to it than falsehood…we’ve seen it on television shows and we’ve seen it in reality – there’s no more proof one needs. A lot of them do not get our ways and a lot of us do not get their way of doing things. Ah, balance!

Many conversations and discussions with friends in the same situation yield the same conclusion and solution – i.e. picking which battle to fight and which ones to forgo the effort over. Growing up has its mean share of lessons to learn – mean because who loves having someone else get their way so much? But to know better and walk away when you must, even when you really just want to stand there and hold your ground, has its benefits; and worthy benefits at that.

We two are a continuous work in progress and while we poke jibes at each other from time to time and turn on the switch when the shit hits the fan, I know we’ve come a long way bearing lessons learnt and a fair share of occasional resentment as well. Learning how and which battle to pick has been my biggest milestone; one that I’m taking a while to linger around at because I’ve far from mastered the art of keeping my cool and finding that balance between what both of us want. I’m constantly learning how to give in and how to be assertive on what’s necessary.

What prompted me to come here and spew these words out, was of course my house help and his complete ineptness, his lack of care and his silly daydreaming ways. A scolding and some self-loathing later, here I am, involving you in my daily shenanigans which, I guess, are a regular feature everywhere…because it’s a universal fact that if I’m not doing the things I want done, then I’ve got to be okay with slight change and compromise for that coveted mental peace.

Sometimes I wish playing house was as simple as putting a bed sheet over my head where all was well and everyone + everything was clean and free. Haha!



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