It’s funny. I’ve always thought I was the easiest person to live with. Ever. I’m fun loving, easy-going, laid back, love to watch a good game of hockey – this is what I posted on my Lava Life profile anyways – which is really more or less a lie and oh yeah, I like to drink beer – this is actually an outright lie. And last but not least I like my house to be cosy and clean not messy with crap all over the place. So if there’s a mess in the house it’s absolutely Dave who has created it. I clean up the mess, I don’t create the mess. The tooth paste all over the bathroom wall, for example, is Dave’s. Every day I ask myself, “What the hell is Dave doing with that damn tooth brush? I don’t see anyone else with tooth paste all up and down their bathroom walls.”
Today I pulled out the vacuum. Dave literally jumped from his prone position on the couch and ran to the vacuum cleaner. “I’ll do it.” You see – he’s afraid I’ll blow the vacuum cleaner up and bend the prong thingies by plugging it in and dragging the vacuum behind me for kilometers and kilometers. And if it’s not that he definitely knows I’m going to put a hole or two in the walls and then he’s going to have to re-paint (I don’t paint but I do provide entertainment).
Frequently (let’s say every day) I tell him he micro manages me in our day to day living arrangements. For example, the dishwasher. Now I know there are people out there who are very particular about how the dishwasher is loaded. He’s not one of those. But he does say things like “Watch out for the wine glasses – don’t put little things in the lower rack because it will fall through and break the dishwasher.” Naturally I don’t listen to a word he says because I’m busy making lists in my head of things.
So today there was smoke in the house (I have a poor sense of smell due to allergies) and the dishwasher stopped. I guess it was close to breaking into fire because I forgot about the little plastic things and one fell through and got tangled up somewhere and almost broke the dishwasher.
I think it’s fair to say that Dave and I are polar opposites in cleaning styles. You see – I’m easy going and tidy and he’s always trying to boss me around and is messy. Our differences of being came to a head last December so we agreed to go room by room and make a list of all the things that bothered the other person about how the other person left stuff, broke stuff or threw stuff into that particular place. I thought this was a cunning way of showing how right I was and how wrong he was.
Well it proved to be an interesting exercise because unbeknownst to me I do things that irritate Dave. There’s a part of me that found this hard to believe but then when I thought about it I realized just how irritating I might be to live with. I did, after all, lie quite a bit on my Lava Life profile (which is how we met). I hate hockey (except for play-off very last round very last game kind of hockey – I’ve only had beer twice in my life and I hated it both times – I’m less a hamburger eating kind of easy-going girl than I am a vegetarian health freak. I’m not easy-going. I can be a domestic tyrant.
It turns out Dave’s list of irritations was at least as long as my own and included the ‘toothpaste issue’ which apparently is me being a maniac with the electric brush. It turns out he won’t put the hair dryer away (on my list of irritations) because I always stuff things in the cupboard (this is true) and he likes to put things neatly away. So now I don’t put things where the dryer should be and he more or less puts the dryer away.
I could go on and on (I really could) but it was an interesting exercise. It has definitely helped us at the very least understand where the source of living aggravation comes from – it definitely hasn’t resolved all the living issues but it has helped a lot – there are things I’m not sure how to change – like today when I almost blew-up the dishwasher and for Dave it’s the same – he loves having piles of everything everywhere which makes me want to hurl it all out of the window – but we’re getting there and in the meantime I’ve discovered that I too can be an aggravating soul to live with. Who would have guessed??