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My husband is a saint....but does this ever happen to you?

Sunday, February 24, 2013

I wanted to put this out there right off the bat...my husband is a saint.

He has never, EVER said anything negative about my weight, or any of my other shortcomings. He has never made me feel like I was anything less than perfect in his eyes. He has never been caught covertly ogling other, slimmer or more beautiful women -- and I think if that was happening, I'd have busted him at least once in the past 29 years! He never makes comments, or looks disappointed in my appearance, or makes me feel less than desireable to him. I know how fortunate I am to have this man, and I thank God every day for bringing him into my life.

Yesterday was a less than perfect day for me. My mom has lived with us for the past 13 years. (Didn't I tell you my husband was a saint?) As she's aged, our roles have changed, and it's no longer a living arrangement that we have for convenience sake....it has become a caregiving situation. I feel that I didn't really sign up for this job, and sometimes I find myself being resentful. And then I beat myself up for those feelings. Complicating the situation further, I have allowed my personal life to be pushed so far back on the burner that I don't even really have one any more. When I do try to carve out a little time for myself, my mom morphs into a controlling, nasty person who makes it her mission to make me miserable. And that old mother/daughter dynamic kicks in, and I sink deeper into the anger/resentment/regret cycle, and she wins. I'm actually getting stronger and standing up for myself a little more often -- normally I would NEVER let anyone speak to me this way. I'm actually considered a strong person. But she's my mom, ya know? She definitely knows how to push my buttons, and on Friday night, push she did indeed!

So yesterday (Saturday) I was still getting the cold shoulder, and it was stressing me out more and more. I'm a people-pleaser by nature, and having somebody mad at me -- especially my mom -- and especially when I did nothing wrong....well, I don't handle it well. When at 3:00 in the afternoon my dear husband, who works two jobs because I don't have one right now, was getting ready to leave for work. He knew how upset I had been all day, and I know he saw tears welling up in my eyes as we said good bye. Silly, I know....but he's my buffer, and he was leaving me alone with my angry, sometimes hateful mother, and I was stressed out....and as an emotional person, that stress makes me cry.

Later, as so often happens these days in my mother's weakening mind, something snapped and she wasn't angry at me any more. In fact, as has always been her way, she wanted to bribe me with food. I think she knew she had done something wrong, but I know she didn't know what. But to make up for it, she wanted to order a pizza. (Is anybody seeing any clues as to why I may have issues with food?) I told her that since it was just the two of us, it wouldn't be worth it to order pizza. (She would eat maybe one piece, and in my emotional state, having seven-eighths of a pizza here in the house would NOT be a good thing.) So I made us a couple of Stouffer's french bread pizzas, which I thought was a good alternative. After that she went to bed, and I felt better, the crisis having passed, and everything on a more even keel. I then worked out for about 45 minutes, improving my mood even more, and settled in to wait for DH's shift to end at midnight.

It can be his custom to stop and get food on the way home, if he's been exceptionally busy and hasn't had a chance to eat anything. He'll call and say where he's stopping, and ask if I want anything. Sometimes I'll have a little something....sometimes not, but he always offers. Last night he was stopping at McDonald's. I said yes, I could eat a cheeseburger. Sometimes we share some late night McNuggets, but tonight I would have a cheeseburger instead. That's all.

But when he came in the door a half hour later, he was laden down with a bag and a drink tray. This man I love so much....he remembered my watery good-bye to him several hours earlier, and I think it hurt him to know I was hurting. And knowing my penchant for Shamrock Shakes, he got us each one. But the thing is, I treat myself to one of those babies ONE TIME per year, and I had already had that a couple of weeks ago. But it didn't stop there. In addition to the cheeseburger I'd ordered, he brought me a large order of fries and he had also got us a 10-piece McNuggets to share. And remembered my favorite sweet & sour dipping sauce. And I was so touched that he wanted to make me feel better by offering calorie-laden foods -- because to be honest, the old Sharon would have buried herself in that McDonald's bag, only coming up for air when necessary. But I'm wiser now. I'm eating healthier. I'm working out. I'm making better choices even when I do indulge. My wonderful husband, who was never a "chubby-chaser" by any means, but who also apparently doesn't care if I carry some extra cargo as long as I'm happy, desperately wanted to make it up to me for all the stress and grief that my mom had brought upon me the only way he knew how. With a huge hug and a bag of food.

And I drank the shake. And I ate the cheeseburger and a lot of the fries. And even a few of the chicken nuggets, with the sweet & sour dip. I didn't want it. But I did it anyway, because I couldn't bear to hurt his feelings after he had done such a nice thing for me. Now tell me....does this ever happen to you? Do you ever eat just to make someone else happy? This people-pleasing...it's another good reason for me benig the size I am.

Luckly for me, DH does know that I don't eat the way I used to. Normally he wouldn't have brought me the extra food I didn't ask for. But I think he was distraught, knowing I was sad, and he just did it. He's not normally a diet saboteur for me. But love makes you do strange things....like comfort somebody with food when you know they are working hard to lose weight. Or like eating something bad for you in order to not hurt your loved ones' feelings.

Of course, the scale was up this morning. But I'm back on track today. Emotionally, and food-wise. At one time, something like this might have derailed me completely! But now, it's just a little bump in the road.
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUNNSHYNE72 3/13/2013 3:53PM

    I too had tears in my eyes while reading your blog! I am also blessed to have a hubby like that too. Outside of my SP friends & my 2 BF's, he is my only family support!

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DDHEART 2/26/2013 10:50AM

    This was very well stated...and it shows a lot more insight on your part than I'm sure you used to have. I read a book years ago that really reached me and one line in particular has stuck with me all these years. The author was from the Midwest and had been transported to New York City for her career and she was talking about the disconnect that some of her East Coast friends had when it came to her relationship with food (specifically ice cream) and this showed up at parties etc. The author said...in the Midwest, food is love! She described my childhood to a tee when she talked about ice cream as a treat, as a salve to a hurting child, a prize for doing well, the hug that came in a dish instead of arms.

Your husband is very sweet, thankfully he doesn't do this too often and yes, even though we know what our trigger is, we still respond to it the same way. LOL

You did very well you know. You resisted your mom's pizza suggestion and subbed a better alternative. Baby steps.

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JANET552 2/25/2013 12:33PM

    John is a saint and you deserve one. My John is the same way and I would have handled it just like you did. Those DHs do their best! I'm so proud of you for the way you handled it -- letting it be just the one day. In the grand scheme it isn't that important if you don't let it be.

emoticon

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SHARON2014 2/25/2013 9:37AM

    What a great personal blog. I have tears in my eyes thinking of your DH and his love for you. My DH is the same way -- if I send him out for food or groceries, he gets lots of "surprises" and yes, I eat some of it. God bless you for the care you give your mom. I know the feeling of totally losing your own "self" in caring for someone else. It is hard, but in the end you will have no regrets. I think of this as my job, or my calling right now -- not necessarily what I would have chosen, but what God has put in my path. Keep in touch! Praying for you! emoticon

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BLUEANGELLK 2/25/2013 9:03AM

    You do have a saint for a husband, but you are a saint as well. Yeah, you had 2 shamrock shakes and some french fries, so what. In the grand scheme of life and healthy eating...it won't even be a blip on the radar. You took time for yourself, gave yourself a little break, and was able to lessen some of the tension. That was probably more important. You have a lot on your plate, and from one people-pleaser to another-- you ARE doing an amazing job. emoticon

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WASCALLYWONE 2/24/2013 11:53PM

    Oh, hun...what a hard choice, but what an easy decision. I want to hug John, myself! emoticon

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CAROLSYLVIA 2/24/2013 8:39PM

    What a sweet story! Blessings on both you and your loving husband as you care for your mom. It's not an easy thing to do, but what a blessing you and your husband are to her. emoticon

Comment edited on: 2/24/2013 8:39:59 PM

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CONCHA77 2/24/2013 7:29PM

    You husband does sound like a "saint," Bless his heart. Glad you can pick yourself up and start all over again on the not so good days...You keep on doing what you are doing cuz it's working! Keep up the good work.
As for you taking care of your mom, you are the saint. I know she realizes how special you are and how lucky she is to have you by her side. You and your husband make a terrific pair.

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CATANTIGO 2/24/2013 5:29PM

    I'm so happy you have such a saint in your life. You deserve it. And you did a great job controlling the pizza situation, and not devouring all the McD food . And your steps? Oy, I can't keep up with you.

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ONEKIDSMOM 2/24/2013 4:25PM

    emoticon And yes, it's happened to me, too. And I don't even need a saintly husband in the picture...

Glad you're back on track. And I hope you enjoyed every bite even though you "didn't want it".

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DIET_FRIEND 2/24/2013 4:05PM

    He's sweet. Good luck working off the calories.

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LILYBELLE8 2/24/2013 3:08PM

    Sharon - not only is your husband a saint, so are you!!! Love you!!

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SUNNY332 2/24/2013 3:00PM

    Bless your heart and I so agree that he is a saint.

I took care of my Mom towards the end of her life (passed away in 85 from Leukemia) and I know all about those guilt trips. It is hard!!! Very Hard!!!! I really think deep down they don't want to depend on people (you and I) but their stages in life make it so that they have to depend on us. That is probably what is behind the ups and downs of their feelings. Hang in there.

So glad you posted this blog. Know I understand the journey you are on and I will be here. Anytime you want to vent...

Glad you are back on track today.

Sunny



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