We had barely started our road trip yesterday when Josh went into a gas station and bought a snack. My instinctive response was dismay. It did not matter that it was less than $2.00, it was almost $2.00 wasted! Gas stations are not the place to buy food.
I had no intention of actually saying anything or trying to change Josh in this area. After all, he is extremely patient with my quirks and would let me have whatever I wanted (other than for us to never spend any money whatsoever). And we all know that one must choose one’s battles wisely.
But not saying anything is not the same thing as not thinking anything.
And so I thought. And after a bit of thinking I realized that it was possible that Josh might waste $10.00 during the course of our trip. And we might possibly take one or two trips a year over the course of our marriage, so this could add up to $1,000.00. One thousand dollars.
Suddenly my internal spaz attack was even more laughable. I could be horrified each time Josh “wasted” money, or I could agree to lose $1,000.00 in order to have Josh feel happy and not deprived for the rest of our life together. How could I resist such an obvious bargain?
It was not as if this internal negotiation changed anything in reality. Josh was going to buy overpriced granola bars whether or not I was secretly dismayed. But thinking through the issue allowed me to realize how silly it was to even care. I need to do more than choose my battles, I also need to choose what is worth any internal emotional agony.
What obvious lessons about relationships have you had to learn for yourself?
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