With growing annoyance, I asked, “Where is my hat?”
It was a question that was rapidly becoming an accusation.
I distinctly remember leaving my hat on the kitchen counter but my wife hates it when I toss it there. In her opinion, a sweaty hat does not belong on the counter so she flicks it on the floor. But I looked on the floor and it was not there either, now I was beginning to fear that she had resorted to a more strident means of training me.
Couples do that, they train each other.
In fact, one can view the entire enterprise of marriage as a training exercise, one designed to wear down the little annoyances.
I am not talking about those foolish few who regard their partner as a project. This never works. Love cannot mold people, the best we can expect of it is to file off a few rough edges.
It is what defines a happy marriage.
Marital bliss is found in the little things – not in the big things. Too many of us fall in love because we share an appreciation of inconsequential things. It may seem important for a time that we like the same music or the same taste for food, or that we hold the same views – but these things rarely endure the passage of time.
People evolve. They mature.
What matters most is that we don’t get on each others nerves and it is the little habits that are the most abrasive– like tossing a sweaty hat onto a kitchen counter or scattering mail about the house.
That is what my wife does. She never throws junk mail away and as a result, piles of postal litter cover every conceivable surface in our house.
Whenever I set my coffee mug down, I must first move mail. Whenever I search for the TV remote, I must first sift through piles of newspapers, catalogs and grocery store fliers.
It drives me nuts.
So I do as she does. I have my own little ways of training her. Whenever mail gets in my way, I add it to the heap of junk mail that rises to an astounding height from the kitchen counter right near where I toss my hat…..
I sift through the junk mail and there it is – my hat. I had buried it under a pile of month old newspapers.
My wife sees this and smiles triumphantly.
It always annoys me when she smiles like that – but she is trainable.