I like chocolate pudding. I also like tuna fish salad sandwiches. When I take a big spoonful of pudding, I expect it to taste chocolate-y, not tuna-fishy. It’s part of a covenant the world and I have. Chocolate pudding tastes like chocolate pudding. Tuna fish sandwiches taste like tuna fish sandwiches.
You might say I depend on these two to remain equal and separate. But like the photo suggests, I’m ok with slight twists to my predictable world.
The same with Chinese food and cheese. Equal and separate. Please don’t let them mix. Mozzarella on my shrimp with lobster sauce? That would be gross. I just threw up in my mouth a little.
But mozzarella on my pizza, tortellini, and ravioli? Bring it. Mozzarella is practically required for any type of Italian food.
I’m getting hungry…
During divorce, the world turns up, down, and all around. The people you counted on left you. The life you thought was stable is now a vast area of quicksand. And the love you thought was unconditional turned out to be limited and the reserves were used up a long time ago. Having a little predictability is the calm in the storm, something to be counted on when everything else is a mess.
One of the nicest things I did for myself during Divorce #1 was to schedule a night off just for me. I contracted one of the local teens to come in the same day every week and babysit for 3 hours, allowing me to do whatever I wanted. Sometimes I went to the grocery store, sometimes I went to the movies, I even cleaned the bathroom a couple of days. The point is, having a guaranteed time to myself allowed me to look forward to something, anything, that allowed me to turn off my brain and take a break from being pummeled by derogatory statements from Husband #1.
Having that time allowed me to just be, which is way different than “just do it”.
I firmly believe that much of the craziness seen today is due to an overriding need to feel special, to be seen as more memorable than the next person. Hence photo bombs, YouTube videos, and endless Facebook posts showing how my scone was better than your scone.
It’s just a scone. Unless I’m having scones with Prince Harry while sitting on a Pegasus unicorn, I’m not snapping a scone selfie for any reason. My breakfast is just as boring as yours, even with creative lighting, a kick-ass Instagram filter, and a fancy, shmancy border around the edges.
Now, my tuna fish sandwich…that’s newsworthy.
If we’re not living on the edge, are we really living? Should my life consist of bungee jumping while drinking beer and hanging with friends? Or is it OK to just sit quietly in the backyard each night with a glass of iced tea and listen to the birds that frequent the feeder? The downtime allows me to think, unwind, and process the craziness of the day.
Pundits embrace predictability for our children, couldn’t the same be said for adults? We expect predictable behavior from our companies. When I fly on an airline, I want their planes to take off and land predictably (safe). I want my destination to be the destination I booked when I bought the ticket. I want my aspirin to work like aspirin should. I want hot water to come out of the tap when I turn the handle on the left side of the sink. I want my toilet to flush predictably. When these things don’t happen, it signals a problem. Predictability is the soothing balm of life. Let me work in the world of assumptions so my brain can deal with other items that are one-off occurrences.
Let me coast a little so I can effectively deal with the next surprise that divorce brings.