When the going gets tough the tough go shopping.
Standing in Bed Bath and Beyond my chest was tight as I debated the merits of blue versus plaid towels for my dorm room. I looked at the right shower caddy, thinking preparation could insulate me from my all the things I knew to be afraid of at college, and all the things I couldn’t even fathom.
Surely, getting the best vases would ensure a wedding our guests would remember. And, getting it all for a fraction of the price covers a multitude of sins, doubts, and insecurities.
For big and little reasons, complicated and pretty simple ones, I was the one to take the lead on much of our wedding planning, house buying, etc. Some of it is frustrating, some is not. (I know I will like the dish towels when I am the one that bought them…. even if the old ones were holy for three years)
Now, that we are “officially moving forward” on this baby train, I found myself staring at the baby aisle of Tar.get, examining the prices, adding them up, wondering how I will get some bargains, with a familiar tightness in my chest. But, that’s normal, right?
Leaving the dog park with Bingo, we stopped by a rummage sale. These great bargains called out to me. Buy me now! You can be prepared! Your super-momdom can start now! You’ll be so ahead of the game! And I bought a few (adorable and cheap) outfits.
And, I showed them to Croi that night at home. She thought they were cute, and was happy I bought them. We talked about things we’d buy used (just about everything except plush), and things we would not (crib–only from close friend, and of course car seats). Strollers, of course were mentioned, and casually SHE said that SHE wanted to do some research on them. You? That’s never been your M.O.
I didn’t really know how to react. If I’m being honest, a part of me was scared–you’re going to do research? No, that’s my job. I do that.
The next day, I kept picturing Croi saying that. “I’m going to do some research and talk to some of my running friends and see what they like in their stroller.”
And, that familiar tightness in my chest nearly vanished.
You see, that’s the down side of planning ahead. You miss living in the moment. I didn’t trust that my partner was really in it, and was in danger of making decisions and shutting her out. That’s not living in the moment. And, to go a step further–I didn’t trust that she was going to be in this with me. To combat my anxiety, I wanted to buy things for the future. Take away from the present, and shut her out. (Creating what I fear. Click! I got it.)
At night, I held her head in my hands and told her how much it means to me that she is just as excited as I am and that I can depend on her for all the stuff along the way. She’s gonna lighten my load.
And the next day, I went to the grocery store and wasn’t pulled into the baby aisle. (I think the word was “hoarding.” No more.)