I read some blogs, did a little "windows shopping" and relaxed a bit. I had washed all of the kids sheets and blankets and I figured I could get the rest done before husband came home.
When I picked up the children I only had a little left on my "to do" list. Okay, if I'm going to be honest, there is a lot of things that could be done in addition to my list, but hey, slowly and steadily the house is getting better than it was when I was working, I had a nice dinner planned and I was almost done with my list.
Eldest had gotten a bad grade. Eldest has NEVER gotten a bad grade and was in a state of shock. Talk him down, Middle came home with lots of news that needed to be shared with Mom, and then Youngest came home for snack and Mom time... so now we're at 4:30 PM. No big deal, I've got this covered.
I go into the bathroom to give it the sanitizing I should have finished before noon and the toilet is plugged. Now this happens in that bathroom several times a week. When Youngest was potty training he had a bad habit of flushing things down and I am sure that one (or several) of those things are still in there which causes it to plug. Usually I can plunge and then it is fine again until the next time someone uses too much toilet paper. But not this time, this time I plunge until my arms are ready to fall off and it won't flush. Fine, I'll let my husband know when he gets home and he'll fix it for me. But when I leave the bathroom, apparently there has been a time warp because it is already after 5 PM and for some reason all of the windows in the front of the house are covered with steam.
Hmm. what could be causing that? It must be the chicken soup I am making. Shrug, walk into the laundry room, take the clean comforter from the dryer and put the last load of sheets in instead. Notice that somehow (possibly because when I took the sheets and blankets from the children's rooms I also grabbed any miscellaneous clothes shoved under beds, etc.) the laundry has multiplied and I now have about four loads of wash lined up for tomorrow. Oh well, my husband has no reason to go into the laundry room and I will get them all caught up tomorrow.
I go to make coffee, (oh yes, last week I only bought a bag instead of a can which means there is no coffee!) and have to call my husband to ask him to pick some up on his way home. He sighs and I explain that he forgot to leave me money so I couldn't go (which is good because there is no way I can get to the store and back and still get everything done!). Now it's 5:30 PM.
I run to wash up, change my clothes and put on my makeup. Yes, I was supposed to do that first thing, but I had a bit of a lazy day. Spritz some perfume on, yes, lovely - he'll never know I was in a pair of plaid lounge pants and slippers all day.
Walk into the laundry room to deposit my dirty clothes in the pile and realize that it feels like Hawaii in there. Wow, it's really warm. Maybe it's because of all of the laundry? Ask Eldest to come in and help me check the dryer vent. Nope, it's attached right. But the house smells like a combination of fabric softener and soup. Hmm, I wonder why, but I cannot see a reason for it and now it's 5:45.
I have a loaf of homemade bread rising in the oven. Just need to turn it on, except the loaf has not risen all the way. Apparently I had not allowed enough time. Well, I'll just let it rise a bit more. I unload this dishwasher and start to load it with the cups and plates from the children's afternoon snack and notice that the kitchen floor has not been swept. Go into the laundry room to grab the broom - really it is ridiculously hot in here. Check the vent again and notice there is a tear in the vent. "Aha, we have solved it Watson", says my inner Sherlock, "There is no time to fix it now - I will just let my husband know so he can fix it". "Excellent Sherlock," says Watson, "but you better get that floor clean."
I sweep the floor, put the broom back and see my husbands car lights sweep the driveway, yep, it's already 6:00 PM. Quickly I add some noodles to the soup and turn the stove on even though the loaf has not completely risen.
I go and meet my husband at the door, the usual kiss and take his lunch bag, his travel mug and the can of coffee into the kitchen. He takes off his coat and goes to shut the blinds. "Why are these windows all steamed up?" he asks. I explain and say that I planned to duct tape the tear in the vent, which should hold until he has time to get a new one this weekend. He then proceeds to explain to me that a gas dryer uses combustion to dry our clothes ("Elementary, my dear Watson!") and that by leaving the tear I am allowing the possibility of carbon monoxide entering the house. Oops. He then goes into the laundry room to fix it and while he is in there I hastily put on the pot of coffee and finish loading the dishes into the dishwasher. He comes out, noting that the laundry is piled up... of course he notices that!
We go and sit in the dining room and I confess that I did not manage my time well. He looks at me and says, "You don't need to tell me what I already know. If I was the one who was home, this house would be spotless. I would do my work first and still have a few hours to do what I needed to after my work was done." Ouch! He said it quietly, and that was bad, but the worst part is it's true. He busts his buns when he has a job to do, never taking breaks or slacking off until the job is done.
Then he gets up and walks into the bathroom. It is squeaky clean (yea me!) but the toilet... yep. So I tell him that I tried to plunge it and it didn't work. Could he please plunge it for me?
Let's sum it up by saying it didn't go well. The plunger broke, the toilet was still plugged and he was furious with me for 1) leaving it for him to do and 2) apparently the reason I couldn't unplug it was because the plunger was broken and I didn't notice and if I 3) had let him know that the plunger was broken he could have picked a new one up on his way home.
He went out into the garage to see if we had another plunger, slamming the door behind him and I hastened to get dinner on the table because now it is almost 7PM and he has not eaten. Do you remember when I added the noodles? Yes, that was a long time ago and now my chicken noodle soup has turned into chicken flavored paste with some celery and carrots and bits of chicken peaking through the goop. The loaf of bread, while still tasting decent, is misshapen and smaller than usual. The only thing that looks good about tonight's dinner is the salad.
Husband silently eats his dinner. I miserably pick at mine. After dinner I clear the table and he finally gets the toilet unplugged. I thank him for fixing it and then we sit down to a kid's movie that they had been dying to watch. It was cute and there were a lot of laughs from the kids and a few chuckles from my husband. At one point he went into the kitchen for a drink and I followed him in, "Please don't be mad at me anymore," I whispered, hugging him. "I'm not mad," he said and patted me on the back. Movie is over and I shoo everyone into bed, wash up, brush my teeth and climb into bed in a sweatshirt and underwear. (I know, no lingerie, no bath to get ready - but at this point I was just too disheartened to care). "Goodnight," I whispered, giving him a kiss. "Goodnight," he answered, giving me a peck. Then he watched some TV while I lay there miserable. He fell asleep and I lay there for a long time, scooting closer and closer until I was lying pressed up next to him.
I really did not set out planning to disappoint him or to shirk my duties. It was just a snowball effect, once it started rolling, it got bigger and bigger. Now, I am left with this cold, lonely feeling.
I've read of this happening, this absolutely miserable, unloved feeling - but I didn't think it would happen to me. His withdrawal (even though I am sure it was his way to 1) calm down, 2) get his own anger under control and 3) he was too tired to really handle punishing me last night) completely crushed me.
If he had asked me to come into the garage with him and spanked me, or if he would have sat me down and lectured me, or taken care of my punishment at bedtime (or really, any discipline I can think of) it would have been better than his withdrawal. It was terrible and I am still unnerved by it.
This is my first experience with this side of the domestic discipline. I am seriously in turmoil over this (and he probably doesn't even realize how much). I feel guilty, abandoned, scared, alone, sad... I know I let him down and the fact that I disappointed him is like a stone pressing down on me.
I've read about similar situations from other Taken In Hand wives, and forgive me, I thought they were either dramatizing it or needed a reality check (I mean, big deal, he got mad at you and didn't spank you) but I didn't realize how emotionally vulnerable you become when you sincerely become a Taken In Hand wife.
When you have consented to this, when you have opened yourself completely to your husband there is such a feeling of closeness, of completeness. You are surrounded by this lovely feeling of closeness, feeling protected, loved and cherished. When you compromise that, especially when your own actions are the reason for the rift, it seems as though a huge, cold void has entered in place of that lovely feeling.
I've also read about being spanked until you cry. I never really got that before either. Why would I want to cry? I just wanted a bit of spanking, a way to keep myself centered and grounded, a bit of discipline because I am not self-motivated. But now I get it. It would be such a relief right now to let these feelings out, to be properly punished and know that while I deserved it, when the spanking was over I would be forgiven. To be able to completely release all of these bad feelings, and come back into the warmth and the love... I really get it now...