Marital Dischord in Paradise (Or, When Your Partner Gets On Your Nerves)

Today marks one week since we arrived in Samoa. And its taken exactly one week for the Hot Man to conclude what I suspected he would…
      “Its kind of stressful having you all here. And expensive!” he said in exasperation. “When its just me I can work and train without worrying about other people. I can just buy simple food for dinner like taro and a can of tuna from Siaosi’s shop.”
      This may have been prompted by an incident which took place when he came home from work the other day bearing fa’alifu taro ( baked taro in coconut cream) and two packets of kekesaina (local doughy cookies made with flour and water etc and seasoned with soy sauce and sugar.) He bought these items EVEN THOUGH i had told him on the phone that I’d cooked dinner and baked banana cake, chocolate pie and chocolate chip cookies. Okay, a bit extreme in the kitchen there but Im really trying to embrace this Domestic Goddess thing and to be honest, its making me very tired. And grumpy. Especially when my husband comes home with bought readymade food. Aaargh! So I was a little “sharp” with him. As in, kinda witchy. (but with a capital letter B.) And he wasnt happy about being told off by a sweaty, grouchy, tired wife. So yeah…maybe that prompted his complaints about how stressful it is living with me again.
     Even though i knew this conclusion was coming, it still rankled. “Oh yeah?! Well it aint no picnic for me either. In NZ i had the whole room to myself and i could stay up all night writing and sleep half the day because there was no psycho-athlete getting up at 6am to run 15k, making me feel like a lazy slug. And…and…and…and…you keep using my towel and so when i go shower, my towel is already damp and i HATE that!”
      But of course I wasnt done. Because of course I must verbalize ten extra complaints for his every single one. “And the reason why it costs more when we’re all here is because Im trying to feed SEVEN people and I have to shop at stores where a yoghurt costs four tala and breakfast cereal is twenty tala. And sure we could all have taro and tuna for dinner but we would need to buy twice as much taro and at least four cans of tuna which are 3.50 for one…so do the math…and blah blah …and it doesnt help if you go buy blaardy kekesaina that we dont need!”
      Yes, this is what happens when you dont actually co-habit with your partner for several months. When you only see each other on weekends every few weeks and youre in a rosey, loving (vaguely lustful) haze. You’ve missed each other so much that neither of you can do any wrong…and money is no object. And silly little things like using the wrong towel, or buying unnecessary treats are not annoying at all. And a wife who prefers to stay up half the night and sleep in the day – isnt a sign that shes incredibly lazy (or ignoring you.)
     Yep, twenty years with this man and getting used to each other and getting “in-synch” is not a painless, automatic thing.
      But today was better. Because I went to sleep early last night (midnight instead of 2am) and i cooked nothing today – so Im not tired and irritable. Instead, Im determined to be a nicer, kinder wife. #promisesPromises
      But i surely hope he brings home some taro and kekesaina today because we’ve got nothing to eat.

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3 comments

  1. LOL.. thank you for this. Being married to a military man is the same struggle. I completely sympathize with your situation. Having my husband home for three years now, not leaving for six months at a time, is a struggle. Soon, he will start another three years of coming and going. I value the time apart and the time under the same roof. Congratulations on 20years of your marriage. I do hope my husband and I will ride out the marriage train till death do us part…lol.

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