Prioritize? Come On...


We leave for Mexico in less than 24 hours. Steve’s got a concert this afternoon. He’ll leave at about 1:00 and get back at 9:00. He’s not finished packing. He’s got some things yet to do for the concert. It’s now 9:30am. Its 36 degrees outside. What’s he doing? He’s putting in fence posts.

You heard me right. He’s mixing cement in a winter jacket and gloves and pouring it into a 4 foot deep hole to secure fence posts. Will the fence itself get up before spring? No. Is there any reason AT ALL that the fence posts need to get in before the snow falls? No.

Inside I’m screaming, “ARE YOU CRAZY, MAN? PRIORITIZE!” Out loud, and I have to commend myself for the calm tone, I suggest, “Uh, Steve, honey, you know there’s no pressure to get those things in today.” He said, “I have time, it’s only 9:30.” I remained unruffled and urged, “Yes, but, umm, if you don’t do the fence-posts, you’d have time to finish packing and you won’t be under the gun when’s it’s time to get out the door to get to the concert.”

“Well, I’ve got the cement sitting in the bags on the walkway, so I might as well just mix it up and pour it in.” He “logically” counters. I’m thinking, “What?! What does he mean?” This is a big messy job – half the time is spent cleaning everything up afterward. But! I commend myself again here: I kept my mouth shut.

I absolutely did not want to get into an argument the day before our big vacation. Plus, I could tell his mind was made up, so why waste another breath (and time) trying to convince him otherwise? So I left to run to the office to, among other things, write this blog.

You know, this type of exchange happens quite often. Steve will make something a priority that I think is completely ludicrous. And more often than not, it makes him run late, and causes me a ton of stress helping him get out the door on time.

He would say that I shouldn’t “take that on.” However, when he’s trying to get out the door and is running around looking for his keys (or wallet, or phone, or charts, or directions, etc…), how can I not get involved? And when I do, and the minutes are flying by, I get STRESSED OUT. And kind of pissed off. And I get really cranky.

Because it’s completely avoidable. IF ONLY Steve would CORRECTLY prioritize. Yes, “correctly” according to me, but I am in the right here. (Damnit) I am. I suggest (o.k., tell him. Well, maybe even lecture, but I’m right!) to Steve that when he’s preparing to leave the house, he should first do all of the things that have to get done. (For instance showering and shaving, gathering items needed for where he’s going, finding keys/wallet/phone/etc, and picking out what he’ll wear.) THEN and only then, if there’s time left over, well, he can do whatever he wants to. Simple. Easy!

Anyway, back to today. I was on my way home from the office, and Steve calls. Its 1:38 (remember, he was supposed to be on the road at 1:00). He says, “Honey, it started raining (sleeting really), and I had to get going. Could you please cover up the newly poured concrete? There’s a roll of plastic in the garage.”

I started laughing. He said, “What’s so funny?” I told him about the subject of the blog. He (good man) laughed. “But the posts were a priority to me!”

I continued to chuckle. He.really.doesn’t.get it. Mars/Venus thing? I’m curious. Do you see your partner in this at all?

What must be said here, however, is that getting those posts in the ground made Steve happy. And I guess I (reluctantly) have to admit that this should be a priority. Perhaps a foreign concept for a wife and mother (i.e. your own happiness being a priority – I’m not boo-hooing here – I know that you know what I mean), but there you have it. And I am happy that he’s happy. Although covering the cement in the sleet definitely did NOT make me happy.

We’re going on vacation tomorrow! I’ll be back with my blog in two weeks with details.

This concludes another view from my married life.