The Incident is Incidental

She went for it by the jugular. She kept telling herself that it wasn’t really a big deal. Why was she blowing things up out of proportion? But something inside was driving her and she reached for it, disrobed it aggressively and devoured it without tasting it…that dark slab of chocolate…and it was decimated.

So too was gone her peace of mind.

What exactly made her reach out for comfort again in chocolate? Like a sleuth, she needed to so some digging. What had happened earlier in the day?

That is what she could not fathom. It was quite insignificant, quite the norm. Adam had said he did not feel like eating the spaghetti that she had cooked but wanted eggs instead. That was Adam. She blamed herself for having pampered him, abiding by his fanciful whims at mealtimes right from the beginning. But she was so used to it by now; so why did she erupt suddenly like a dormant volcano?

She was beginning to get angry at herself for having lost it and wondered if that had triggered her binge. In the past her feathers were not easily ruffled and this new nagging irritation was disturbing.

Then she remembered that earlier in the day, while she was in the middle of her meditation, he had asked her with urgency to go out into the garden to help and she had had to forego her interrupted practice and oblige, mumbling about always having to go by his demands, never having her space and time respected.

She had been aware for sometime now that she was discontented with this pattern of behaviour both in her husband but more so in herself, when she would grumble pathetically and snap at him every time he called her to do something while she was in the middle of something else. She felt more and more that she never got to complete her tasks in peace because she almost always went along with his agenda. They had even discussed it and she had requested him to consider if she was doing something before shouting for her and once in a while she had even managed to tell him to wait. But both habits and one’s nature get set in stone over time and to change at least the habit one needs to hack at the stone consistently. She had been hacking at it for a while now without much success.

As for one’s nature, she had at least come to the wise conclusion after much trauma that life worked best when one accepted unconditionally the others’ “sanskars” or personality traits and that the only person one can change is oneself. She had really made an effort to accept her husband’s impatient nature and wanting to get things done immediately as well as perfectly. She understood him and when viewed from the sunnier side, it was a trait she really appreciated because he always got things done. That was the funny thing. A characteristic becomes dark only when taken to extremes. She even knew that. So then why the recurring outbursts from her side every time he impinged on her time? She used to be so patient and she did not like herself when she was triggered.

That is when it dawned on her. It was not only about accepting him. She needed to change. What she perceived in herself as composure and tolerance was also over-amplified* and that extreme version made her submissive at times. Her needs were not being met and that is why she had gone for that whole bar of chocolate. She had to turn down the volume a little.* She had to learn to say “no” or “not now” more often, to find a balance. She had given it a go by requesting him to wait and consider at times but it was not working. We teach people how to treat us. The pattern had taken many years to create. On both sides. It is now up to her to keep picking at each stitch till that particular fabric falls apart. At least from her side.

*Neale D Walsch: ” All of your so-called faults, all the things you don’t like about yourself, are your greatest assets….They are simply over-amplified…just turn down the volume a little and weaknesses will be seen as strengths.”

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