Life of Liz

Posts Tagged ‘Liz’

Submission is not a feeling, it is a Choice

In Authentic Life, In the Beginning, Out of the Comfort Zone, Wisdom on January 16, 2013 at 8:03 am

I found this article very interesting.  I became a Stepford wife and saved my marriage. I’ve pulled out some key parts, but I encourage you to read it in its entirety.  It drew a lot of parallels to my own life/marriage and how we’ve been able to incorporate the philosophies of ‘surrender’.

Ellen says: ‘More and more women are working, becoming CEOs of companies and gaining status in the work world. It is very hard for them to come home and be a feminine person and a wife, and be loving and soft and caring – they just come home with this boss attitude instead.’  

No, I have not worked since we have had kids, but the transition from being the CEO running a large family into Henry’s wife is similar.

When I first began surrendering to Henry, in seemingly small and insignificant ways, our 17 yo daughter was visibly uncomfortable.  The contrast between Liz pS (preSurrender) and Liz PS (PostSurrender) is night and day and her reaction both amazed and saddened me.

But I didn’t actually realize just how much my behavior had affected the whole family until I gave in to Ali for the first time, and both he and Yasmin started to cry because they were so happy and relieved.’

Our house, our kids have benefited numerous ways from my shift into a Surrender Wife. A great thing about kids is when you start missing the mark, or more simply, when I slip back into Liz pS, they are not afraid to say something, even if it is painful to hear!  Last week our 5 year old son said “Mommy, if wives always yell at the dads then why do the dad’s want to come home?  Why don’t the dad’s go play instead of getting in trouble?”  Hard to hear, yes.  But it showed how far we had come because a year ago, me yelling at H would not have anyone batting an eye.

So it is not for lack of compelling positive reactions that make the Surrendered Wife road the right choice for me, but   Karen says it well;

‘I have been raised as an independent woman and the Surrendered Wife movement goes against everything I’ve stood for.

Yep!  And everything society tells us we should want.

‘But, incredibly, it has saved my marriage.

Mine too!

I don’t do more housework – I do less, because Ali is so amazed to be thanked so nicely for every small thing he does that he has started loading the dishwasher for the first time in years.

‘Before, I would just have criticized him for putting the dishes in the wrong way. He is so thrilled with the “New” Karen that he even told me to sit and watch a film the other night so he could do the ironing.

As I willingly defer to Henry’s leadership I too find that he is self motivated to do the small things that I probably nagged him about NOT doing for years.  pS Liz was very concerned in making sure H did ‘his fair share’ and it caused many hurt feelings and unfulfilled expectations.  Post surrender, we’ve even had an occasional tiff when he’s tried to clean up the kitchen after dinner and it only serves to make ME want to see HIM relaxing after HIS day at the office.  What am I to do?  Well, I am not sure of the correct answer, but once I insisted I would clean up; and once I submitted myself to his desire to bless me and he cleaned up.  Either way, it turned out as a win-win.

What has become apparent to me in the chaos of the last 6 weeks is Henry’s willingness to engage and lead US back onto solid ground.

‘He appreciates there is a closeness between us that we had lost.’

Liz pS used to be the one trying to fix our marriage with whatever ideas Redbook or Self suggested.  Now looking back I realize I was trying to change Henry into my version of who I thought he should be.  The problem with that is I really didn’t know who I wanted him to be and in hind sight – the man I married 20 years ago, the man who could run his own life and handle anything – the man I tried to beat out of Henry is the man I NEEDED him to be and Redbook offered no advice to get HIM back.

Ali himself – a husband so henpecked he still bears mental scars – agrees his wife’s change of character altered the dynamics of their marriage dramatically

I guess this post is more about reminding myself to make the internal choice to stay focused on what is really important for me, our marriage and our family to live in harmony.

Just as I believe ‘Love is not a feeling, it is a Commitment’ going forward I want to remind myself that likewise “Submission is not a feeling, it is a Choice”. Because in the end, it is all about the choices we make.




12 Hours before Xmas and my true love gave to me, “wait… that’s not on my list”

In Authentic Life, Christmas, PMS aka Menopause aka Bad Days, The Countdown begins on December 19, 2012 at 7:46 am

bambam, Wham, KOWABUNGA!!       wham

That is the sound of my pride hitting the wall as my dear Henry reminds me yet again that I cannot do it all.

… “You are not Super Woman” (what, wait, really?)

… “You are not Santa’s only elf” (how dare he!)

And evidently “I am not expected to be Martha Stewart” either!   (I wonder if Martha ever found herself here as she cranked out craft after craft.)

Why, oh why can I only hear him clearly in a certain compromising position as he swiftly reminds me “yes, VirginiaLiz; I am in charge here” lol?

BUT as I sit here listening to “you better not pout, you better not cry, you better not fuss I am telling you why; Santa Claus is coming to town” for the 10th time this morning and now that I am thinking a little clearer (thanks Mr. Grinch )Henry) and I am ready to tackle my day I felt inspired to give my own version of a beloved classic.

I know some of these things could sound frivolous and aren’t in the spirit of the real reason for the season … but just trying to keep it real and hope other moms can relate!  I like to call this new version …

Liz’s 12 hour before Xmas …

12 Xmas Cards needing to be addressed

11 Office gifts to wrap for Hubby

10 Xmas Eve PJ’s to color coordinate

9 Santa gifts left to buy

8 times the little’s have asked to update the Advent Calendar (today)

7 errands Grandma must run today

6 batches of cookies left to bake

AND 5 kids that are sick and needed the DOCTOR ….

FOUR times I’ve scheduled and cancelled a Mani-Pedi

THREE school concerts I’ll attend before Friday

TWO dinners in need of groceries (Xmas Eve and Xmas Day)


ONE House that needs a good cleaning

And with that I am off to Toys R Us, Target and if time permits that place I’ve tried hard to avoid … the MALL.  Wish me luck.   By the way … now that I’ve had my fun I am free to remind myself … jesus

GRANDMA’s in the house

In Authentic Life, Out of the Comfort Zone, Red Pill on December 15, 2012 at 6:57 am

For the last 3-4 months I’ve experienced a whirlwind of emotions surrounding Grandma’s move into our home, but God has been ever faithful and today I find myself in a very good place.  Let me explain

I’ve always been especially close to my Grandma –where as my mom and her (sometimes my mom and I) are not, which is why it had always been assumed that when ‘that day came’ Grandma would come to live with me.  It wasn’t until her move became more and more eminent that I began to examine parts of my heart that were/are pretty selfish.  I spent considerable time analyzing how this would affect ME.  How MY space would be disrupted and MY routines challenged.  A seed of bitterness tried to take root and crowd an already overburdened relationship with my mom.  The same thoughts rolled through my head daily to the tune of “I have 7 kids; how can I also be expected to provide care for my 90 year old Grandma” … I was surprised when those thoughts led to “your mom must really not care about you if she is willing to let you take on the responsibility of Grandma in addition to your 7 kids”.  The emotions that I have spent so long hiding were once again shouting loud and confirming my fears – “I am not really loved”, “I am a fraud”, or the crushing blow “you’ll fail”.  When Henry forced me to challenge the fears I reverted back to self protection mode and tried to shut him out.  But this time, my red pill husband didn’t back down to me and firmly established his leadership.

Henry: “Liz, meet me upstairs”

Liz: “No.  I don’t want to do this anymore, this isn’t fun anymore and I don’t want to play”

Henry: “I am not playing; meet me upstairs or think seriously if this is a line you want to draw with me”

Hmm, what to do?  He sounds serious and his body language indicates he is not kidding.  If I challenge him, what will he do? This was a big step for US because Henry was not only maintaining his position, but he was causing me to re-think my next step and for a woman that has acted without thinking many times, having to stop and realize the consequences of my next step is a big turning point.  How I proceeded, what step I took next was directly related to what Henry might do or what Henry wanted.  Does that make sense?  It wasn’t that I just wanted to submit – trust me I did NOT.  But somehow HE had established himself as the leader and his intent came through loud and clear “think twice before F*cking with me” Wow.  Really??  So, what to do??

Liz:  “You know what, fine!  I will go upstairs, whatever” (my motto has always been “in for a penny, in for a pound”

Henry:  Good girl (*ugh*, what the H*ll is going on!!)

Henry let me sit upstairs just long enough to break through my pride and prepare for what would surely follow.  I am not going to go into detail about what transpired.  I cried and lashed out; but not at Henry.  No, I had not realized it, but all the hurt and pain inflicted at the hands of my moms’ selfishness that I’ve spent years trying to rationalize away came flooding out.  Right there, right then – over my husbands lap is when I could finally let go of the hurt, pain and unforgiveness inside my heart.  I let Henry inside the secret lock down chamber of my inner most insecurities.  And while we typically do not tangle 2 events together, the night ended in a blur as Henry reinforced his ownership of my body (many times over).

God is so good and Henry is so in tune with what makes me tick that neither of them let me celebrate my own personal pity party for too long.  The service at church last Sunday was about humility.

hu·mil·i·ty /hjuˈmɪləti/ noun

[noncount] : the quality or state of not thinking you are better than other people : the quality or state of being humble

Here I was worrying about ME and MY routines when my 90 year old Grandma was leaving all she had ever know to move 3000 miles away and live with a controlling women and her 7 crazy kids.  Talk about a reality check!  Oprah would call this an AhHa moment!!  No longer was it about ME – once I started seeing the upcoming events though her eyes I was able to realize the debts of my own selfishness.

And then the final blow came when I heard, in a quiet, content voice “you love Grandma; she is 90.  I am giving you this GIFT of time with her in your home so please receive it as such” … WOW!  Grandma in my house a gift?

Today, my Grandma is asleep in her room, Henry is the love of my life and my 7 kids are cranky, loud and hyper with Xmas anticipation – And I am finally at a place of humble acceptance to the gifts which God has bestowed upon me.  Not an easy journey – but a very necessary trip none the less!!  Happy days my friends~ ~Liz

Reaching your personal ‘Pitch Count’

In Authentic Life, Out of the Comfort Zone, Red Pill, The Countdown begins on December 4, 2012 at 11:24 am

It is less than 2 weeks away.  13 days to be exact.  Am I ready? Is our home ready?  Kiddos ready?  Yep, those are the millionmillion dollar questions.  I did grab a ‘glimpse’ of a paradigm shift the other day.  It was as I drove through a predominately Asian area and noticed several Grandma Types pushing strollers and watching kids play at the park and I remembered how common it is for Grandma Types to live with their kids and assimilate into their household.  And it’s not a huge deal; it is expected and common in the Asian culture.  It started me thinking that I am over thinking things.  I am going to try and spend some quiet time exploring ‘why’ I am so anxiety ridden about the ‘what if’s’ of my Grandma’s move in.  I already have an idea of where that is going to lead (selfishness, fear of not meeting my own expectations) but instead of shying away I am going to try and pro-actively peel back some layers of Liz!

Selfishness is tough.  Everything is ME oriented.  Everywhere I turn I am encouraged to think about myself, how I am affected.  And being an admittedly private and introverted person ME Mentality fits in easily. It is true, having Grandma in our home is going to cause me to stretch outside of my comfort zone if for no other reason than she will be IN our home day in and day out.  I haven’t been stretched in this way for a long time and its challenging for me to embrace what I know is going to be an uncomfortable process.  I am frequently disappointed with how often I slip into ME Mentality.  Why don’t I dwell on the obvious … Grandma is a 90 year old lady who is moving across the country; she is giving up her independence and entering a brand new phase in her life.  Think about it … you are 90; you’ve lived in the same area for most of your LIFE; you own a car and drive; you live in your own apartment, cook your own food, and pay your own bills.  BUT now you are moving 2000 miles away and changing 100% of your daily activities.  Putting it that way, why am I whining?  Yep, selfishness.  At my core I am all about LIZ – is God using this situation to stretch me, make me uncomfortable in order to work out some of the ME Mentality?   That is the first part of what I will ponder in my quiet time.

hair_1And then PERFECTIONISM raises her pretty (perfectly styled, colored and highlighted) head and whispers in my ear … it’s your job to make sure everything (Yep, everything) is planned, scheduled and orchestrated in a way that would make both Martha Stewart and Social Sally take a breath.  Grandma’s living space has to be perfect.  Grandma’s social calendar and introduction to the Sr. Center needs to be scheduled.  How Grandma will fit into our everyday life needs to be orchestrated.  And this is my struggle; all of the above are easy enough to accomplish – but when your own level of expectation is unattainable … failure is easy.  My controlling nature lends itself to owning (taking responsibility for) the expectations of others … does that make sense?  Grandma is happy to have an area to be her own within our house – it is LIZ that needs that area to be Martha quality and conveys the message “you are welcome in our home”.  Grandma is likely ok causally dropping into the Sr. Center – it is LIZ that needs to be assured that is it orchestrated so she has a grand time with her new BFF’s.   I will need to remember that I can’t control how Grandma adjusts to her new space, or whether she embraces the ladies at the Sr. Center.  Yep, control and failure.  This is the 2nd part of my quiet time focus.

And the countdown continues … The weekend was not the best for Henry and me.  In fact, it was pretty *yuck*.  He is stressed about money.  I am stressed about Christmas.  It took me the better part of a ruined Saturday to remember a few key things I’ve been reprogramming my mind to believe.  Henry is a MAN and I am NOT.  Seems simply but when Henry is stressed, he internalizes and works things out in his head.  On Saturday I took this personal and reacted accordingly.  Also, as a MAN (again, which I am NOT) there are times that Henry just wants to do MAN things – and on Saturday that meant cleaning out junk from the garage.  Mind you this wasn’t on MY very busy list – and again I reacted as such.

It is a learning curve – this submissive wife thing!  Equally daunting is keeping my commitment to thoughtfully review (via RED PILL glasses) the blips in our relationship to ensure what I am seeing is ACTUAL and not a hold back from yesteryear (a society that disregards the important differences between men and women).

Pitch count is the number of pitches thrown by a pitcher in a game. The pitcher wants to keep the pitch count low to avoid overuse that could lead to injury.pitcher

We were finally able to connect on Sunday night but we lost all of Saturday and some of Sunday.   Henry said something last night that is worth sharing.  When we got to the point of spanking, I gently asked him why he had not initiated a spanking on Saturday (because in my FEMALE brain, that would have been a quick fix).  He gave me a very MANly analogy from baseball, “pitch count”.  To Henry, since I had a fairly strong reminder on Thursday morning he thought Saturday was too soon for me to pitch again.  Now mind you, he was no longer concerned with my pitch count on Sunday night!  Nope, we talked, I apologized,
he explained and then he reminded me who was the leader in our marriage.  And since it was bedtime anyhow, and because HE felt so inclined, we ended the night in an explosive way, hint hint!

Have Men been SUBMISSIVE to Women?

In 1950's wife of Today, Authentic Life, In the Beginning, Red Pill on December 2, 2012 at 9:36 am

I have a lot of rambling thoughts; please bear with me as I try to write a cohesive post.  I am going to use Henry as my reference point, but to a large degree ‘Henry’ could be replaced with the name of any man – or ‘Men in general’.  Likewise, when I reference myself – you can easily replace your name – or “Women in general”. This post was easier for me to write in the 3rd person.

Henry is reasonable.  He is not quick to react and does not act in haste.  He is not prone to display his emotions during a heated debate.  Adjectives used to describe him are logical, practical and level headed.

Liz is volatile.  She likes to get things done quickly and has often jumped in before examining all the mitigating factors.  She is emotional.  Adjectives used to describe her are impulsive, unpredictable and unstable. 

Every time ‘Henry’ is referenced think of the above and do likewise for ‘Liz’ references.

For the first 19 years of their marriage, Liz was the de facto leader of their union.  Liz won her position by exploiting Henry; by using the essence of his Manhood against him.  Translation …  She flipped his strengths and turned them into weaknesses.  Take Henry’s nature to not act hastily.  Liz was able to convince Henry his thoughtful nature was a fault.  She used convincing arguments to support her POV, the loudest being “you’re not leading us the way I think it should be done” translation “you’re not a man”.  She countered Henry’s logical and level headedness with unpredictable and emotion laden outburst.  Henry resented Liz and over the course of 19 years many power struggles ensued.  Being an alpha male by nature – Henry won a majority of the battles.  And then Liz played her trump card.   She countered with unrelenting determination every effort by Henry to live in a logical, practical environment which in turned forced him, in an effort to save himself, to seemingly SUBMIT to her de facto leadership.

Synonyms for the word Submit:   abide, accede, acknowledge, acquiesce, agree, appease, concede, defer, give in, give way, go with the flow, grin and bear it, humor, indulge, kowtow, lay down arms, obey, put up with, quit, relent, relinquish, resign oneself, stoop, succumb, surrender, throw in the towel, toe the line, tolerate, truckle, withstand, yield

Still, Liz was not satisfied.  She wasn’t leading Henry; he had simply removed himself (not physically, but definitely emotionally) from her 19 year reign of terror.

And then it happened.  Either through Divine intervention or basic human survival Liz was able to catch a glimpse of what she had spent 19 years creating.   She saw a contentious marriage to a withdrawn and resentful man.  She saw her 6 daughters grow up as good students (or maybe she was a very resourceful teacher?) already mimicking her Total Domination Relationship Management techniques in their relationships.  Liz knew she was unfulfilled as a wife and mother.

I wish I could write that things immediately ‘fixed’ themselves.  They did not because it takes more than a realization to bring about permanent change.  Permanent change requires time and patience.  Please re-read the words used to describe Henry, which is pretty incriminating for Liz.

Definition of Submission: the action of accepting or yielding to a superior force or to the will or authority of another.  Humility, compliance.

I am ending with the definition of Submission because without Liz accepting her role within the marriage it is impossible for Henry to be the leader he is called to be.  This is not to imply his leadership is dependent upon her submission, but rather a belief that a logical person will naturally shy away from an unpredictable situation.

Men have the innate qualities to lead women if we believe men are logical, practical and level headed.  Today, Liz is able to see Henry for who is has been all along.   And that is where we end out story for today.

Authentic life … part 1

In Authentic Life, Out of the Comfort Zone, Punishment, The Countdown begins on November 27, 2012 at 7:33 am

Authentic life … part 1

Thanksgiving — Tuesday night brought a sense of ‘the calm before the storm’.  Henry’s mom arrived, followed by our oldest (Elizabeth).  Thanksgiving marks the first time since we’ve been a Dd couple that we’ve had relatives visit and stay with us.  It was just about 7 months ago, right before we started our new dynamic that I had a very public meltdown in front of not only his mother, but also my parents, my grandma, my sister, his sister and his mom’s best friends.  Henry thought it might be beneficial to write about that event as a way to discourage any type of repeats this week.

Let me set the stage … when our oldest left for college last year it was so much harder than I would have anticipated.  Jump ahead to our 2nd daughter’s (Gracie) high school graduation (which is the event that brought all of the relatives to our house).   Gracie would be reporting to her university 2 days after the ceremony and SHE was not handling it well at all.  She was equally Impossible, Rebellious, Pouty and Heartbroken during the preceding 6 weeks.   Truthfully, she was acting the part of an out of control 2 year old who had been denied the longed for piece of candy.  Enter the above mentioned 8 relatives into our home and what ensued was not our family’s finest hour.  In fact, over the course of the 4 days we spent together … The F word was used.  A plate was broken.  Doors were slammed.  Gracie got drunk and needed to be driven home (and NO we do not permit our kids –all under 21– to drink).  None of this was done behind closed doors. By the time we dropped Gracie off at her dorm room 2 days later, I actually was somewhat relieved!  (Ha, that lasted about 60 second).

It was just a few weeks after the ‘event’ that H and I got serious about our relationship.  We’ve joked a few times about how different and/or sore I would have been if we would have been a couple back then.

So much has changed in the last 6 months.  Thankfully …

I love Thanksgiving.  Correction, I love the imaginary Thanksgiving that is never achieved.

When I was growing up my mom demanded everyone is our home support her vision of the perfect holiday.  She would not permit anyone to actually help her.  No, she would instead require her kids to be on standby – typically that meant sitting and watching her in her efforts.  This also meant you could not be in the TV room or in your bedroom.  You couldn’t go outside and ride your bike or play tag. I ended up dreading Thanksgiving and vowed to make changes when I controlled the dinner with MY family.

And control things I did!  As a young mom I was eager to have my girls help with the preparation and happy to engage Henry into his share of the workload.  I can’t say it was any better than my own childhood – but it was different.  Instead of demanding my family stand at attention as my mom had done, I put my family to work and then followed behind them and re-did their tasks.  By the time we sat down to dinner I am sure all of my workers felt as though they were rode hard and put away wet!

I had a paradigm shift last year when Elizabeth came home for Thanksgiving after being at school for 3 months.  Suddenly it was more important to me that she enjoy her day with us and not so much about the appearance of a perfect event.  It was a lovely day and she commented several times how much she enjoyed herself.

Here is a bird’s eye view of the contrast:

Past:  8:00 am Thanksgiving morning … Henry would have been jolted out of bed by my demands of “I need help”

Today: I greeted Henry with a cup of coffee and then had a very pleasant conversation with my mother in law as we scoured the Black Friday advertisements.


Past: I would have insisted the TV be tuned into the Macy’s Parade because that would help create the Thanksgiving scene in my head of what a happy family would do; the kids would complain, Henry would make “football is on” overtures and no one would be in the family room.

Today:  I made no mention of what should be on TV … but glanced into the family room to see 3 kids enjoying the Macy’s Parade and overheard Henry say “10 more minutes and we switch to football”

Past:  Turkey time = A stressed out Mom with a brood of stressed out kids and a husband walking on eggshells. 

Today:  Tranquility and anticipation of a relaxing meal shared with family.

Next up … Authentic life part 2 ….presenting the appearance of success while the truth of failure lurked beneath the surface.  

28 days …

In Out of the Comfort Zone, The Countdown begins on November 15, 2012 at 11:42 am

Grandma will move into our house in 28 days and I am feeling increasingly overwhelmed, when I ran across this little gentle reminder… and then heard my 6 year old happily singing a song from vacation bible school this past summer “You Can Trust God”… now it is stuck in my head too!  I plan to refer to both of the above links often.

That said …  At the moment our house is 100% disorganized and I am having a very difficult time prioritizing.  It doesn’t help that Henry has worked until the wee hours of the morning all week, after working all weekend and is looking at working the upcoming weekend as well.  And by ‘weekend’ I mean 9 in the morning until the 2-3 am.  Blah!  There are things that can only be done by him—so part of the reason I can’t get my list going is because I can’t do several of the big open items.  It also doesn’t help that our school district has picked this week to call ‘conference’ week which is really just an excuse to torture parents with ‘minimum’ day schedules.  Oh yes, they still arrive at school by 8:15 – but then the kinder is out at 11:35 and the 1st grader out at 12:31 … but the middle schoolers stay on regular schedule, which means another trip to the same area at 3:06!  It is hard to get in a groove of cleaning and organizing stuff when you are constantly jumping back into the car … ya know?

Back to my mini breakdown rant!  Henry’s mom is flying in from out of state on Tuesday.  She recently had surgery (she has stage 3 breast cancer) and the post op didn’t go so well … she has a ‘wound vac’ that drains to a bag that hangs around her neck.  Hmm, not sure what that requires from me … Our oldest daughter Elizabeth also flies home on Tuesday – same airport but 6 hours later so you know what that means?  Yep, 2 trips @ 2 hours each round trip!  Yippee!  Basketball daughter (Gracie) can’t come home for Thanksgiving but we are going to see her the day after – b/c it seems like a good time to drive 6-7 hours in a single day.

But here I sit, typing and gazing out at the state of disorder of my home.  I’ve managed to move around the bedrooms to accommodate Grandma and also to move both college daughters into a shared room – but the moves are only ½ way completed so stuff is everywhere!

How’s Liz?  Well I can’t say I’ve been overly supportive or submissive to Henry the last 7 days and while I feel internally guilty, especially when I know he has zero time to address my attitudes, I just can’t gather the internal fortitude it’ll take to ‘right my ship’.  In some ways I think I am self sabotaging in a couple different ways.  First by acting petulant I can create distance between H and myself which makes me ‘think’ I am doing it alone and I am free to become the controlling monster of yesteryear.  Second, I may be passive aggressively approaching the upcoming move-in by not effectively getting things done.  For instance, last night I sat on the couch flipping channels until after midnight, thinking several times that this may be the last time I am alone in my family room – so by not tackling the areas in the house that need focused attention I am left feeling frazzled and defeated.  So to sum up:  I have purposely created distance with my man (not that hard since he’s been home about 12 hrs out of the last 36!) and I am drowning in a sea of cr*p created by my need to make everything perfect for my Grandma’s move while at the same time secretly wishing she wasn’t moving into our house.  There!  I said it “secretly wishing she wasn’t moving into our house”. 

(Re-reading the above paragraphs makes my outlook sound pretty bleak.  Sorry!  I’ve actually had some good conversations with Grandma – which were truly needed b/c they went a long way towards reminding me that I enjoy Grandma’s personality and also how hard this must be for her.)

It just seems like too much is all me, with ZERO assistance or backup available to lend a hand.  In addition to what I’ve already painstakingly narrated above, I am also expected to figure out how to set up Grandma’s medical insurance in our state (which means leaning how Medicare and supplemental insurance works!).  I need to figure out how to add her to our car insurance (she will drive our Prius).  Henry wants her added to our cell phone plan – so need to do that too. And Elizabeth’s birthday is 2 days before Grandma moves in … gotta plan something there too.  OK, last thing because you guys are probably sick of my whining by this point but Xmas for 7 kids just doesn’t ‘happen’ so put that on the list too.

I do have a returning thought of “do I create these unbelievably tough scenarios because I am the only one that can do AB or C” or “is my control freak persona taking over?”  It would be easy to say “do what you can, the rest will figure itself out” but that is just not realistic.  My mom (Grandma’s daughter) is no help whatsoever.  None.  Once again I am the adult in our relationship.  Sometimes I think maybe the reason I am a control freak is b/c of a lack of ability and/or effort made by those that should be taking up some slack.  I mean, if my mom said “Liz, I’ll figure out the cell phone plan or the insurance(s)” I would say “Great!” – I have no need to make that one perfect!  I do need the house to be clean, organized and decorated for Thanksgiving.  I do need to plan a family celebration for Elizabeth’s birthday.  I do need to create Xmas for 7 kids.  And you know what else I needI need a firm hand to rebuke the low lying insubordination that I am dishing out towards Henry and I need help in righting this ship.  That’s the first time I’ve admitted my need for a spanking.  Just to not be the one in control for a brief amount of time; to not be the point person; to not be responsible for fulfilling the dreams, desires and expectations of a host of many.

I am not yet at the point of comfortably communicating my needs to Henry if for no other reason than I am loathe to put one more demand on his time.  He is very likely hanging on by a thin thread; functioning on 6 hours a sleep for 5 nights in a row and dealing with an internally aggravated, secretly passive aggressive pouty wife and a career driven, micromanaging feMALE boss who motivates with a ‘my way or the highway’ approach.  OK, I’ve used up the time between 1stgrade pick up and middle school pick up (successfully accomplishing very little) so I will close with this pic, which very appropriately sums up my thoughts ….

Sorry for the harsh language — sometimes it’s the quickest way to cut to the punch!

Just one of those days!

In PMS aka Menopause aka Bad Days on November 9, 2012 at 1:03 pm

I will admit it; yesterday was not my best day.  It was just one of those days frankly.

I woke up and ….

  • Didn’t pack any lunches.  Why?  I don’t really know, but since the kids had extra time this morning (late start Wednesday) I decided to let them figure it out.  Hmm, wonder what the 1st grader created?
  • Got in the shower; didn’t shave.  Again, no idea why.  Passive/aggressive towards Henry maybe … (who has been glued to his laptop until way past midnight working since Saturday night).
  • Kinda got ready for my Wacky Wednesday Mom’s Morning Out – not really committed to going until the moment I walked into the ihop though! 
  • Said several things to Henry that I knew would not end well … including “whatever” in response to “ aren’t you going to be late if you don’t get out the door?”  Followed up by “I don’t careI really don’t care” when he followed up with “is that really what you want to be saying?”  The refrain was just a tad loud for his liking … and then my favorite … “I don’t have time for this … as I hurried out the door”.  Ya, that about sums up my interchange with my dear, sweet Henry this morning!
  • When I finally arrived at ihop – Just for the heck of it I ordered the deep fried stuffed French Toast (3/5 stars) and country fried potatoes with cheese and sour cream (5/5 stars)!  In for a penny in for a pound (or 5 lbs!).
  • Went to the mall – you know, just to look and instead bought some makeup because Lancôme had a free give away with purchase (umm … I wonder if my CPA husband will think it was free when he sees the AmX charge … hmm gotta think about that one).
  • Didn’t make dinner … I decided on my own the kids were likely in the mood for Dominoes … Not!
  • A little short with Henry when he called to say he would be unable to help drive to/from Life Groups tonight (yes, because of work … I know … AGAIN).  Found myself pondering “do the girls really need to be spiritual this week?”
  • Finally sat down to watch Mob Doctor … Ok, I guess I could have started with that info and you would have been able to sum up my day without any of the above explanations, huh?
  • Ate a pint of Ben and Jerry’s Salted Caramel – and added salt!
  • Fell asleep at 10 pm – with my make up on!  Hate that.

Yep, not a great day.  But guess what I got today … yes, actually I did receive an intense ‘reminder’ this morning about what is and is NOT acceptable to say to your HoH … which brings this weeks tally to those keeping track to 4!   … By George I think he’s got it#time to get my act together#orgetusedtoasorea**!

I also received a visit from my friend – the one that hasn’t shown her face for 4 months … yep ‘that friend’ … oh the joys of being 46!  Well, on the bright side, maybe yesterday’s PMS had been building for the past 4 months!

~ yippee!  The weekend is almost here; H will be done with his work project and we can concentrate on getting things ready for Grandma’s move in … 12/14!  The arrival of my friend also means we can forego the evil barrier and have unprotected, unrepentant put the lime in the coconut and shake it all up SEX~ yippee!


Stepford Wife … 1950’s

In 1950's wife of Today, Goals on November 7, 2012 at 9:40 am

I have the need to ramble  today, please bear with me … This post runs the gamut of 1950’s housewife, to spending limits to what the heck another reminder spanking and finally … recipes needed!?!

Vesta had a great post the other day (Internal Thoughts) where she wrote about not having a lot in common with other ladies who were chatting at the health club.  After reading her post, I started to envision what it would have been like to be a housewife in the 1950’s.  I wonder if I would have felt more accepted and settled if the idea that a woman should live for her husband and family was the dominate image of our time.  I mean, what if the 1950’s notion that women found fulfillment in domesticity was prevalent today?  If you do a quick Google search for “1950’s housewife” you are bombarded with television, radio, and magazines advertisements that assure women that the kitchen was their realm and that loving food preparation for their families was the way to fulfillment.  Were these women simply paid actresses or did many 1950’s mothers and wives actually did find fulfillment as housewives?  I found this unidentified quote …

“There were many unpleasant aspects of my life as a housewife, but I didn’t question my position. It was what women did. At least, so I thought. I did not have a brilliant husband, but he ruled our house nonetheless. That is what men did. He proclaimed it was my “duty” to respect and obey him. I had no say in money matters and was actually given an “allowance” for food, clothing, cleaning supplies, etc. It was woefully inadequate, but I had to try and make do.”

She added, when asked further about money matters

“No, I don’t recall being ‘in debt’ or even having a credit card.  My husband gave me an amount to spend and I did not go over that amount.”

Some of this is on my mind because Henry has been working to get our spending under control.  He had been up until this point hesitant to put any true hard and fast financial restrictions on my spending – oh they still existed, but not in a clear and concise way.  And to some degree I’ve taken advantage of his lack of structure over my spending.  So we are finally at the place where HE is comfortable taking responsibility for OUR household and that includes MY spending.  Today he presented an amount and asked if it is reasonable to keep our grocery spending at or under that amount.  My reply … “hmm, I honestly don’t know” because I haven’t really paid attention.  So we (HE?) decided to track a few weeks of typical spending to see what the correct amount is.  I wanted accountability, right?

Actually, “yes, I do” – because the security of knowing Henry is actively running our household is very comforting.  It was not too long ago that he barely paid attention to the running of our household because he knew I would over ride/bicker/challenge even the simplest suggestion.  Oh how far we’ve come!

When I roll together my satisfaction with being a stay-at-home mom, and who incidentally also enjoys cleaning and cooking, with being given what amounts to an allowance from my husband I had to chuckle at the possibility of being labeled a ‘Stepford Wife’ from the women at the club that Vesta mentions!  Because as TV and magazines tell us 100 times a day, if a woman decides to stay at home or if she confers with her husband about going out for the day, she is suddenly a Stepford wife who is surely chained to the house and under her husband’s complete and utter control.

So today a discussion about the implementation of a spending allowance and then a “just because I think this will help keep our crazy week straight” session.

And all of the above orchestrated and carried out by my dear HoH.  Kinda reminds me of that phrase “there’s a new Sherriff in town” … so in closing, if anyone has a few good recipes to feed a hungry brood on the cheap, please pass them along … to start it off, this recipe is pretty close to the go-to recipe my family loves, Rigatoni with Chicken and Spinach …! Off to vote ~Liz

Submission without publicity

In Out of the Comfort Zone, Shrew-ness on November 2, 2012 at 1:49 pm

Two well read bloggers recently posted about having family members find out about their dynamic lifestyle.

I see this as a touchy subject with a lot of women in a submissive role.  Surely I can’t be the only one who is adjusting to second guessing my new role and expected responses as an obedient wife and sometimes comparing them against my crazy controlling self of yesteryear!  Any attention called to a submissive behavior that I am still coming to terms with is bound to make me uncomfortable when noticed by someone else.

In our family, as you may recall – we have 7 kids including 2 in college and 1 in high-school.  In the very beginning, my ‘newly submissive’ behavior b/c respecting Henry was very different called attention to itself with our older daughters.  A few times it was actually funny to hear the 16 year old (Maggie) stick up for her poor, oppressed mom, lol … love that girl!

It’s been the occasions when Henry asserted his HoHness ever so slightly in a way that I knew my older daughters would be clued into that made me uncomfortable.  They are noticing that I am allowing myself to be directed (very subtly) by H.  They notice that I defer to H before making the final decision to a request of theirs.  Don’t get me wrong; I am glad our daughters are seeing a better role model of a husband/wife relationship and that they might one day create a similar dynamic of a husband lead marriage when their time comes for them.  For me it boils down to an adjustment of my pride to be submissive in ways that contrast my former self.  I have never been afraid they would find out about what goes on behind closed doors in our relationship – Henry is very private and would never let that happen 🙂

I don’t know how I would react in I was in the situation(s) described by the above bloggers; I think I would feel betrayed a little~ maybe a little humiliated?  Is it too big of a jump to say the trust that I’ve given over and placed in Henry includes my little, sometimes overly sensitive girlie emotions – and realizing that men and women truly are DIFFERENT – this may be an area that some HoH’s may never truly ‘get’ but in an effort to respect the trust bestowed upon them, they choose to make an effort to respect.  ~Liz


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