October 16, 2000

The Commandments

got into bed last night and couldn't fall asleep. I just laid there, my mind racing, flitting from one subject to the next. I had practically written today's entry in my head when I finally fell asleep. Of course, this morning I can't remember a damned thing except the overall concept of what I had 'written' and now I wonder how I fell asleep, seeing as how I was just amusing myself for an hour or so. I should have just gotten out of bed and wrote the thing then and there.

This morning, for whatever reason, I've been thinking about why John and I are still together after all these years. For 14 years, our lives have been entwined. For 14 years we have lived through Very Good and Very Bad. Our marriage is so utterly different than when we first met, and not just because we have a child. I'm thinking of all the things that we do for each other that must make us seem like loons to the outside world...


- Thou shalt not share a blanket on a regular basis. This may seem really strange and so very non-happy-marriage like, but here's the deal. We're both blanket stealers. There is no happy medium when there is only one blanket on the bed and we're forced to share. Our secret? We each have our own blankets. That way nobody is waking up in the middle of the night freezing and shivering and swearing at the sleeping person while yanking the blanket off of them.

- Thou shalt not wake the sleeping bed traveler. When John and I first married, we happily shared a double bed. We were still in that honeymoon-i-don't-want-to-be-more-than-2-inches-away-from-you stage. We had a number of small-like beds over the course of the next 5 years. Enter the King Size Waterbed. Now, get your minds out of the gutter, we're not talking about sex here. The KSW is probably what taught us to not share blankets. When the KSW was new, WildChild was just learning that she could walk during the night and come sleep with Mom and Dad. So, as I'm sure many parents can confirm, what you end up with is Dad way against one side of the bed, Mom clear on the other side of the bed, with the child laying across the bed between the two. The Family H-formation if you will. You considered yourself lucky if you ended up with her head next to you rather than her feet. Now, here in Korea, we are back in a Queen sized bed. It feels like we don't fit, even without WildChild sharing with us. We both like to sleep sort of on our side with a knee thrown up for good measure. Not good unless you are both facing the same way. So one moves up closer to the head of the bed, one moves down. I'm sure you could all get a good laugh at a night video of us, each scooching (is that a word?) up or down, depending on how the other person is sleeping at that moment.

- Thou shalt not drink the last off the coffee if you are the first one awake. This is really more for my benefit, since I'm rarely the first person to wake up in the morning. I will admit that John wakes up at ungodly early times and makes coffee first. He always makes sure that there's at least one cup left for me when it's time for me to tumble out of bed. If he wakes me up, he even makes sure it's all made and all I have to do is sip. The man is a saint, I'd swear to it.

- Thou shalt not touch the other person's computer. This is an actual rule here in the house. It's not so much about privacy as preferences. As in, I like to see everything on the screen so everything looks tiny to him. He likes to read the screen without his glasses, so he's an 800x600 guy. For the 4 months that we had to share the computer here, waiting for the others to arrive with the shipment, life was rough. We share everything in the house, no problems. Not so with computers or computer time. I like to surf and chat and the like, he wants to play Half-Life. I want to read email and chat, he wants to play Starseige. Throw in there WildChild wanting to play her games...well there aren't enough hours in the day. Life is much better with 3+ computers in the house.

- Thou shalt respect reading time. See, I have this problem. When I get a new book, I can't help but start reading it right away. Breaks are for going to the bathroom, replenishing the coffee, finding that extra pack of smokes that were laying around here somewhere. There is no talking, because honestly, I'm not paying attention to you. That's probably why I like to read late at night. If you want me to go to bed, you had best come and take the book away from me, and hide it while you're at it, because I'll just stay awake reading until I'm finished. John doesn't do a whole lot of reading, but I do leave him alone if he's having some one-on-one time with his reading material. Likewise, since I don't stay awake every night reading until 6am, he lets me have my indulgences.

- Thou shalt do the dishes if thou didn't cook. It took us years to come to this compromise. For a long time, I cooked and cleaned and worked full-time. Then I got pissed, so HE cooked and cleaned and worked full-time. We then came to the agreement that if you were the one to put that fabulous dinner on the table, you are exempt from doing the dishes. There are, of course, about a bazillion caveats to this, especially since WildChild is getting old enough to do dishes herself. Right now, since I'm not working, I normally do the cooking and dishes during the week. That makes me exempt from doing dishes on the weekends. WildChild, who still thinks she's too young to have to do chores, tried to get out of doing them by not washing them properly. Yeah, I nipped that right in the bud, as if I hadn't tried that when *I* was young! All other housework is shared, with the exception of any laundry that needs to be done during the week, I will do. I still won't iron his BDU's though.


I'm sure there are more, but those are the ones that come to mind this morning. I woke up, there was one cup of coffee left for me to tide me over while waiting for a fresh pot to brew. When I woke up, I was warm and comfy surrounded by my own new blanket purchased yesterday. My computer was just like I left it before going to bed last night. Neither of us fell out of bed by way of being knee'd to death. The reading rule wasn't enforced because I'm waiting for my books to arrive from Amazon. I do need to find out who left all the dirty dishes in the sink last night making sure that I'd have to do them today...

Posted by rowEn at 01:09 PM | Comments (2308)