Archive for ‘Dilemma!’

September 6, 2011

Playing House

It occurred to me last night that I haven’t really settled into the whole idea of being married.

Let me explain.

Laying in bed, it didn’t feel like the place we sleep every night, it felt like the husband was staying the night and would be gone back to his own place in the morning. I open up the cupboard to find food, and feel like I’m going through someone else’s kitchen, not our own. I had a moment yesterday while putting towels away where I felt like I needed to ask someone’s permission to rearrange the linen closet.

Try as I might, I just can’t shake the feeling that I’m a little girl playing house.

It’s not an “I’m not ready for this” feeling, but more of a “this couldn’t be my life” one.

Am I alone in this, or is it one of those common-but-noone-mentions-them things? Am I completely crazy?

Or is this just a sign that I need to rearrange my furniture?

August 23, 2011


My body has decided to rebel against me. Today’s lovely issue … teeth.

Funny, considering I was JUST talking with Becky and Christy yesterday about needing to get to a dentist. Well, now I don’t really have a choice.

Last night during dinner I took a bite of dessert (soft foods) and WHAM, serious pain, up the left side of my face. Nothing hard to bite, so I don’t think I cracked anything, but HOLY CRAP IT HURTS. Overnight the pain localized (and kept me awake, rawr) and got even worse, if that’s possible. Well, worse at some points, almost non-existent at others. Stupid comes-in-waves-pain.

I spent the morning calling straight down the list of “in-network” providers within the area. THANKFULLY one can get me in at 7am tomorrow. Thank God.

Let’s all hope it’s just a previously missed cavity that got deep, and needs filling. That’d be free. But if I need a root canal … well, let’s just say the car payment (and my sanity) is going to suffer.

Oh, and right … have I mentioned that I hate dentists?


I’m gonna go curl up and weep now. Talk amongst yourselves.

August 5, 2011

Save The World

You pull me by the arm, tell me what to believe.
Tell me that there’s only one way, one way to see.
Whatever faith you choose may not be for me.
How can I be saved while being forced to believe?

– Rufio, Save the World,  2000 *

I’ve mentioned … mostly in passing … my struggles with the church I, for all intents and purposes, married into. But I wanted to dive a little deeper, because it KEEPS COMING UP.

I was raised Lutheran. Left my childhood church over ever-changing, ever limiting moral guidelines (when they decided they were going to side with the “Being Gay is an Abomination” crew (no, not Westboro), I was done).  Started attending an area non-denominational church with a friend. Fell in love with it, felt at home, felt closer to God than ever.

Then I moved. Looked, but couldn’t find a church I felt as comfortable at. Resolved to drive the 50 miles each way, each Sunday.

The husband, on the other hand, was raised very strictly in a relatively young (it was established in the 1920s) church. The teachings are Christian, and vaguely Protestant …. and so far I haven’t found anything that I disagree with in the doctrine. His dad is as close to a pastor as one can come in this church (they subscribe to the old no-clergy rule), so it was pretty non-negotiable for him growing up.

Then we got engaged, and I moved clear across the country. And by default, we ended up at the church he’d been attending while in school.

I have to say, up front, that I’ve met some lovely, lovely people through this church. People I’ve grown close to, and people I admire a great deal. The things I am about to say have nothing to do with them.

Right away, I felt something was off in this church. Over time I’ve come to realize that there’s nothing wrong, it was just my gut reaction to something so SO different from anything I’d ever experienced. For example: prayer is out loud, and done in call-and-response style (you know, “AMEN” after every sentence). Those not singing are encouraged to loudly read the words of the hymn while everyone else is singing. The terminology used is often the original, or a different translation (for example: “prophesy” in place of “testimony”.) Emphasis is put on the origin of something, not the intention (for example: Christmas – the date of celebration is believed to have been chosen to correspond with the winter solstice and the pagan celebrations then, therefore, they believe Christmas is a pagan symbol and is not be celebrated. Blessing someone when they sneeze – originally done because of the belief that you sneeze your soul out, and need to be blessed to ensure  the demons running rampant don’t snatch it up. This is still not common practice within the church, even though now it’s become the polite thing to do and has nothing to do with demons. And so on.) Sunday meetings (services) aren’t led by one person in particular, anyone can get up and speak.

There’s nothing WRONG with any of this. But, that last point leads to most of my problem. If anyone can get up and speak, anyone can say whatever they want. Including the man who, during a discussion of prayer, said that if you don’t pray in a certain way, it doesn’t count. He went on to say that most new believers are mistaken if they think they’re praying at all.** Or the gentleman (who I actually like quite a bit, even if I don’t agree with him) who insists that if you don’t worship in the manner he chooses to, you’re never going to be as close to God as you could be. Or the woman who forcefully told me (several times) that my baptism “doesn’t count” because I wasn’t baptized “into The Church”. I stayed away from church for 3 weeks last December (Christmas and the Sundays before and after) because I was so worried about what people would say. (I wasn’t the only one who did this, I later found out.)

I realize, after much thought (it’s been 2 years at this point) that it’s not the church I have difficulty with, it’s the people. I can recognize that what so-and-so says is their personal viewpoint, and not something this church promotes. But it’s difficult to hear someone telling you what you believe is WRONG, that it doesn’t count, that you’re misguided.

The husband has suggested I talk about my concerns to someone I trust, within the church. To someone who will understand what I’m talking about. But the thought that these people I trust would look at me and find me lacking … that my disagreement would turn into “oh you poor thing, you need guidance” … holds me back.

We recently had a discussion about the fact that while I, as an adult, can realize that “oh, that’s just Joe***”, I would not be comfortable raising children there, when “Joe” would be the one teaching them. Children don’t know the difference, and it would make it very easy for that misguided principle (the prayer one, for example)  to become their belief. I wouldn’t be able to handle it. That being said, we don’t currently have children … so I just deal with it.

And then we had a new addition to our Monday night bible study group (a group of 20 and 30-somethings). He has an incredible testimony, and we were thrilled to have him. But then things started coming up. In a pretty intense conversation on where we wanted this Monday night group to go (split into smaller groups, continue as one big, take the focus off the “study” portion, focus on it MORE, etc.) he spoke up and said “Everyone’s talking about what THEY want. But it’s not about what THEY want, it’s about what GOD wants. He wants us to worship him, not focus on ourselves. We shouldn’t be chatting, we should be praying, nonstop.”

Wise words, but it felt like he was scolding us. I thought about it for the next week, and then when the discussion picked back up the following Monday I said “I’ve thought a lot about it, and I cannot presume to know what God wants. But I know without a doubt that he DOESN’T want me to come to a meeting where I’m not focused because I’m not into whatever we’re discussing or doing. It’s counterproductive to go through the motions when just because we HAVE to, if we’re not feeling it.”

Nearly the entire group agreed.

I wasn’t trying to argue with him, just to express what I’d decided. Not one to be disagreed with, he launched into a  lecture on how even when we’re eating before the bible study, we should be focused on God, not on “earthly things like work, or how you hate your job, or how this coworker has it out for you.” And on and on and on. All the while, staring straight at the girl who’d spent dinner catching us up on her difficult work situation (at our request).

That settled it, he WAS scolding us. I was NOT a happy camper, but I let it go, so that the night didn’t turn into one big argument.

But then this past Monday he shows up … and promptly comes over to tell me thought my dress was awfully low-cut, and did I really think that it was appropriate for church?


First off … the dress was not at ALL low-cut. In fact, I’ve worn it around some VERY conservative (morally) people and been told how lovely I looked. Secondly … WE WERE NOT AT CHURCH. We were at someone’s apartment, getting ready to eat dinner. And for that matter, I HAVE worn it to church. Thirdly … BACK. THE. EFF. OFF.

I desperately want to be able to say, like I do about the others, “It’s just him. No one else thinks that way. Don’t worry about it.” And I know that’s true. But after a lot of thought, I finally put my finger on it … I do not want to continue in an environment where he feels comfortable enough to say things like this, and act this way. An environment where he assumes everyone will agree with these thoughts. All it does is hurt my faith, and that is the exact OPPOSITE of the point.

I told the husband this, and he agrees. But now it becomes tricky. This is very important to him, and it’s also important to him that I be happy. But I know, if I don’t go with him, if I find another church, he’ll be disappointed. And I don’t want to do that to him.


What do we do?


* Ah, Rufio. Do you guys know them? If not, look them up, and welcome to Rancho, circa 2001. This was the music of my college years … and the band was made up of my friends. Their first album officially came out in 2001, but I’m saying 2000 for this song because 1. I know when it was written and what it was about (the girl the lead singer desperately wanted to date was Mormon, he was not … half the album is about her) and 2. I have a demo, with this song on it, from early 2000. And 3. I can claim partial credit for the band, as I was at the bassist’s house (his younger brother was one of my closest friends) the day he came in with the lead singer and asked us if we thought they sounded good and should try and do something with this band. They recorded their demo, on our prompting, 3 weeks later. So there.

** I seriously almost flipped my shit right there in church. In my book, “you didn’t pray right, it doesn’t count” is among the VERY WORST things you can say to a new believer.

*** There is no Joe. Well, maybe there is, it’s a big church. My point is that this is the first name that came to me.

July 28, 2011


So, we’re on week 3 of this running plan, and kids? Last night was HARD. This week’s extra-30-seconds-of-running-at-a-time wasn’t so bad for the first 20 minutes, but by the time my hour was almost up, I was ready to kick something.

Or not kick something, that would have hurt too.

On the plus side, it was 4.2 miles total. Even with the warm up and cool down walking (and there’s a lot of it), I am making the 15 minute mile race cut off. Woot!

I’ve also learned that if I can run on Wednesday nights, I need to do so to So You Think You Can Dance. Seeing what I used to be able to do (“Fun” fact, I was cast on season 3 JUST BEFORE my accident. Eff that. I watched the season and cried the whole time, that summer.) is inspiring. And when I get upset about the fact that I can’t do it anymore, I can take my anger and pain out on the treadmill. It’s a reminder why I’m doing this.

In any case, when I got back upstairs, I was done for. I stripped everything off and jumped in the shower just to stand and cool off. Then I put on my comfiest pjs and collapsed on the couch. I had to force my Gatorade down though. That’ll teach me to not check and make sure I’ve put the GOOD kind in the fridge.* My legs were stiff and my back hurt (not HURT hurt, I was just sore all over. I’m being very careful to pay attention to the little twinges, and so far, so good). I was tired. I just needed to rest.

Then the husband comes home.

Looks at me quizzically.

“What’s wrong?” “I hurt from my workout.” “How far did you run?” “4.2.” “Did you foam roll?” “No.”

Enter a 10 minute speech on the merits of foam rolling and how I’m not doing any of this right.

Now, with all my years of dancing, and my accident, I’m VERY good at listening to my body. If something feels off, I do something about it. But, the stiffness in my legs was already going away, being replaced with that soreness that comes with muscle realigning. No big deal, already improving. My back needed to be worked on, but it was fine. I wouldn’t have continued if it wasn’t.

By the time the 10  minutes was up, I was really upset. It showed. When he asked “WHAT?!” I lost it. As I sat there sobbing, trying to explain how while this is a really tiny thing to him and his marathon-length runs, it’s a huge deal to me right now. How I needed support and for him to be proud of me, and a little sympathy as I struggled to get my body back into shape.

And he just got irritated that I was upset.


I said forget it and, crying, went to brush my teeth and go to bed. I was still awake when he came into the room half an hour later to talk. I was able to explain to him while I was so upset (without sobbing) … but he still doesn’t get it.  He doesn’t see why I need encouragement, and why jumping straight to (what I call) correcting me on technique or telling me I’m doing something wrong hurts me. He’s only trying to help, he says. To give me the benefits of the tips it’s taken him so long to learn.

I appreciate the help, I really do. But it doesn’t negate the fact that I need the support, and I’m not getting it.


This is a tough one.


* The husband like the regular red-orange-yellow Gatorade. I think it’s foul, and will only drink the Frost varieties (the light greenish-blue and purple). Which means we always have 2 kinds in our fridge. Or, are supposed to.

July 7, 2011

Sometimes We Don’t

Oh man … has it really been a week? Oops.

Full recap of the weekend … the wedding, the visiting, the dog sneezes, the fireworks … coming tomorrow. With photos, of course. Because I love you.

Alright, let’s get to it.

So I wrote yesterday, RIGHT on the heels of a rather heated (well, for me) argument. Decided not to post it until I cooled down. Let me just say … SMART DECISION. There’s no need to post in the middle of angry time. It just leads to trouble.

Long story short, Tuesday night the husband wrecked his bicycle (wasn’t wearing a helmet – IDIOT), fought me on the going to the hospital issue, and finally ended up with a stern talking to (from the doctor, about the lack-o-helmet), 2 staples in his head, a newly scrubbed arm (road rash is a nasty thing), a clean CT scan, and one hell of a headache. Oh, and a field sobriety test at 3am, per doctors orders (yah, he was REALLY happy I woke him up. Gotta watch out for those brain injuries!).

Now, Tuesday was supposed to be my first full night’s sleep in my own bed in 5 days. Clearly, that didn’t happen, but I wasn’t fussed … he was hurt and needed to be taken care of, right? Right. The trouble started the next morning.

He’s tired. He hurts. The staples are pulling his hair. And this is my fault, for making him go the hospital. He doesn’t WANNA take medication for the hurt. Leaning back so I can wash his hair around the staples (that can’t get wet) is UNCOMFORTABLE. I’m doing this on purpose. He doesn’t see the need to hurry and just wants to take the train, and I’m the bad guy for insisting on driving (he is on a 24 hour concussion watch after all). He’s generally pissed off and snarky, because his head hurts. We argue. I cry.


It is incredibly hard to remain sympathetic to someone when they are being a royal brat. I wanted to be able to push it off as he’s-doing-this-because-he-hurts, but it’s HARD! I feel taken advantage of, and under-appreciated, and everything that goes along with it … and that’s never a good situation. I wonder if he felt like this when I broke my arm, but remember that I was upset when he DIDN’T help me, and only grateful when he did. But I WAS bratty. Big time. (I blame the drugs.) And having someone you’re worried about be a brat to you? Terrible freaking feeling. Terrible.

And then there’s last night. He comes home, and wants cuddles and attention and loves and to be taken care of. He apologizes for being a dick to me, and admits he hurts and feels like crap. We soothe each other for a while, and then head to sleep. This morning he thanks me for washing his hair. And doesn’t complain, even when I accidentally pour a cup of water right in his ear while rinsing. (Oops.) He’s kind and supportive, and humors me when I desperately need to take care of him, for my own sake.

Ah married life. I imagine this is what yo-yos must feel like.