My husband drinks Diet Coke by the caseload.
Okay – maybe that’s an exaggeration. But not by much.
The point is, it’s a staple in his world. He’s even got multiple can cozies – the special metal kind, with the colored rubber rim – to keep his drink colder, longer. It’s a thing.
Now, let’s rewind back to the early days of Coronavirus when a good chunk of the world freaked out and grabbed all the supplies within reach – whether they needed them or not. Fun times.
Toilet paper. Baby wipes. Dishwasher tabs. Diet Coke.
All of above were hot commodities for a little while there. Tough to find – even if you were willing to go to multiple stores or order online.
But because I’m an amazing wife – I did the work to pound the pavement and scour the shelves to score some Diet Coke for my beloved.
Great news, right?
Would have been… except husband prefers the cans.
I grabbed bottles.
He saw them. And gave me duck lips.
You know the kind – where someone pushes their lips together in a beak-like pout.
I was over it.
Didn’t he realize what lengths I’d gone to in securing his essential life elixir?
Couldn’t he just make the bottles work?
I mean, really.
I allowed myself to be annoyed for a bit and when I was done, I remembered something about my husband that I actually love – and hate – but mostly love.
He’s a ROCK STAR with self-care.
Knows what works for him and what doesn’t. Allows himself to rest when it’s needed. Doesn’t force himself to “make it work” when just a little extra effort would get him exactly what he originally wanted.
He was willing to go back to the store to make the exchange. It was worth it to him to sacrifice 30 mins of his day to secure a week’s worth of can sipping bliss.
I’d have sucked it up – right out of the bottle.
Even though that wasn’t my preference.
Why? Who did I think that’d help?
While he was away making the switch, I mentally catalogued all the things I’ve “just made work” over the years.
Bathing suits that weren’t quite the right color.
Dinner with a sauce I wouldn’t have ordered.
Shoes that were a tiny bit too tight.
A later bedtime than I knew my body needed.
Visits that crossed over from inviting to imposing.
I’d put up with it all. For no real reason other than I thought it was preferable to not make waves. To seem agreeable. To make it work.
But all that “making it work” didn’t actually work for me.
In constantly telling myself “no” – you can’t go to bed yet, you can’t spend the time to exchange the shoes, you don’t need a different color, it’d be rude to send your dinner back to the kitchen – I was constantly abandoning myself.
No wonder I felt resentful a lot of the time.
I spent the next week tallying how often I told myself no.
Imagine if you told anyone else in your life no that many times. They’d probably get the hint and move on, right?
Except you can’t move on from yourself. You can only continue to reinforce the hidden belief that your needs don’t matter.
Take a look, Bee. Where are you saying no to you?