Taking responsibility for things is always my forte, only except when with my better half. There are times when I am the most ‘adult-like’ and easily pull off an impressive cadence of responsibility and self-introspection. And there are plenty of such times too when just like an outraged child, I throw my hands up and become ready to shift the blame to someone else – my hubby in most cases.
Last Sunday was a prime example and my poor husband was on the receiving end as usual. As it was Mother’s Day on Sunday, we planned to go to a weekend destination on Sunday morning. But since we had just the day on hand, we decided to leave early so that we could be back home by evening. We planned to wake up early, but I pressed ‘snooze’ on the alarm on my mobile too many times and we both woke up late. I made a quick breakfast and then we rushed around trying to get my toddler fed (which takes just under an hour), lunches made and packed, teeth brushed, hair done, shoes found and backpacks ready… The unusual Sunday morning madness, with way less time.
By the time we got everything ready and strapped ourselves into the car, we were pushing 12:20 and it was time again to feed my baby. By the time my baby got re-fed and cleaned, the stress of the getaway reached its crescendo, and I went on to spread my royal flush of emotional cards in my classic battle to win the ‘blame game’ with my hubby dear.
“You know I hate being late… Why didn’t you set the alarm to go off earlier? Why is it always my job to feed our baby?…You should have been way more supportive!”
Related reading: 10 ways to apologise to your wife for forgetting important dates
And we dropped the plan of going to our weekend destination and opted to go to a fun fair in the city instead. By the time we screeched up to the parking area of the fair, my poor hubby had been exposed to so much verbal toxin that it could destroy a whole layer of ozone. But I sped away inside the fair in a tizzy, feeling absolutely justified in my attack.
It wasn’t until after we exhausted ourselves with the giant wheel and tora tora rides and were relishing the yummy candy floss that I started to feel that perhaps I had overdone the ‘my-husband-is-to-blame-for-everything’ department. I began feeling really bad for behaving so childishly. When I had settled down from my ranting and raving about the day’s delay, I was able to self-reflect and by the time we reached home after a wonderful dinner and three rounds of sundaes, I couldn’t resist tugging his shirt and saying, “I am sorry, I was responsible for the delay too, it was not entirely your fault.” He just took my hands in his and kissed them softly – I knew he would understand what I meant.
It is indeed hard to accept things when they don’t go the way we had hoped. It is even harder to take responsibility for having behaved obnoxiously.
It’s quite embarrassing and requires immense mental and spiritual energy. Also, it often involves an apology, and that requires nothing less than elephantine effort if you happen to be in the kind of headspace that I was in that Sunday.
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It was tough for me. But I realised that it was I who was to be blamed for behaving like a brat. Everything that I had accused my husband of, I shared at least an equal part in (if not more). I adore and love my husband and I value him. And I hate feeling disconnected to him. I knew the only way to actually reconnect to him was to take responsibility for my part – for the way our Sunday went – just the way I expect the same level of accountability from him.
Ultimately, this is what these holidays and togetherness are all about. Reconnecting with our partner who loves us boundlessly. If we truly connect to him, we need to do some sober soul-searching and take responsibility for at least our part in the relationship. The husband is always ready to accept our apology and reestablish our connection – we just need to be bold enough to take responsibility.