Last night there was a really rare occurrence, Adam and I had an argument. We have had in our 14 years together very few arguments or even cross words, although others around us frequently have thought otherwise. Our relationship has always had a snipping context to it, one line comments that have no possible answers to them, or if possible to answer, it is with another one line comment. Unless you have ever had a friendship which is like that, it is hard to explain that we are really playing a complex game, the rules of which have been laid down over the years and others can’t just join into without getting it wrong. So when last night I found myself constantly explaining how I felt and what I meant it was all rather strained and odd.
To call it an argument I know is wrong it was more a need for action without causing offense. It stems from one of the biggest differences there is between us and that is our individual views on how often housework is needed to be carried out and whether it actually matters if it isn’t done.
I have always been houseproud, not a word that I really like but it best describes how I like my home to be. I have always kept my home as Adam would describe it, as ready for the Queen to pop in for coffee. I would say ready to have a photos taken of without embarrassment. I hate being able to see dust sitting on anything or dirt at a level it is obvious. This time of year is horrid in that respect as suddenly after months of low light levels and closed curtains, suddenly there is the bright clear light of spring filling each room and here is the crunch not shinning back off every object it touches. Our home is full of highly polished object, chrome, silver and crystal is visible where ever you go and all of it should do one thing, shine. Add a vale of dirt or dust and it fails in one of it’s primary roles. The warm weather of the past few days had seen me spending more time in rooms actually filled with light, meaning more time to feel dismay at the state of my home. My world is small and to see all of it deformed by lack of care hurts deeply. Action was needed.
Yesterday morning before Jake came round I started to find out what it would cost to have a cleaner come here to just sort out what I couldn’t do and what Adam didn’t want to do. When Jake arrived he made a comment about the state of things, I have known him for over 20 years so he knows me well and he knows how I like my home. By the time Adam came home, slightly later than normal, I was already slowly passing steam from my ears, what followed was inevitable.
We passed the conversation back and forward, throwing one liners that changed on my part to cutting comments mixed with tears, frustration, emotions and begging. He sat silent as he does at times then simply said ‘I suppose I could try to do an hour a day after work’. He then got up and without another word went off and started with some much needed basic housework. I didn’t actually feel any better because here is what the whole thing was really about. I knew we can’t afford a cleaner, what money we have is much needed for the basics of living, I rarely ever ask Adam to do things for me. Usually I struggle silently unless he notices and offers help, to ask for help isn’t a sign of weakness or anything else that you might think it is. No asking for help is changing his role in my head from husband, to carer. I don’t want him to be my carer, I want him to remain my husband, my friend, my companion and nothing else. At times I have already had to let him step over the line in my head, I have had to accept him doing things for me so personal and embarrassing that I wouldn’t want to ask anyone for help with, but there has been no other way.
This is one hurdle that although I have clearly seen it ahead I have managed to keep my distance from. It is harder than any other hurdle that MS has presented to actually cross over. He has told me repeatedly that it isn’t a problem, that it is the way things are and that he doesn’t see it as him being my carer, it’s just part of what being my husband, requires. He can tell me that a million times but I still can’t or don’t want to accept it. I accept that in time I will have to but this transition stage is a hard one, as my self image along with his, are what have to change in my mind. The time for that change has to start now but I still don’t want to make it.