The other day I whispered a little prayer... something along these lines:
"God, help me see where I can be a better wife. - amen"
I kid you not, less than two minutes later B and I were knee high in a shit flinging fight!
I'll spare you the details for now, but in the aftermath I felt defeated. I felt like God had given me an opportunity to grow and become a better wife, and I completely missed the boat, in stead I had jumped aboard the SS Strife! Inwardly I just kept reflecting on the incident, trying to see what I was supposed to have learned, how I should have responded. (ok I also stewed in a place of righteous indignation for a bit) The more I reflected the more I saw how our argument was a complete role reversal of how we typically duke it out.
B usually voices a frustration to me, some times calmly- other time not so much.... and I typically respond defensively, feeling personally attacked, and start spouting off the stored ammunition of past wrongs.
This time it sounded more like this...
ME "I need to to tell you that I am feeling _________."
B "Welcome to my world! I've been telling you for years to ______, and I can't tell you how many times I've asked the kids to _____. And remember when ______...." - get the picture?
Complete role reversal... but why? Why did we both act so out of character....
"God, help me see where I can be a better wife...."
God had answered my prayer, I was able to see, to experience the frustration and hurt of being vulnerable in stating a need or an issue only to be turned on and fired upon. I wasn't voicing my feelings to blame and accuse him. I wasn't intending to attack his character. I was voicing a personal need in hopes of being met with a partner willing to hear me out- and that is how B comes to me. Likewise, how B responded to me is how I've responded to him more often than not (which I hate to admit).
So maybe I didn't miss the boat after all.... Maybe I'm on the right boat, but a long ways from the destination...