As I'm starting to write this post I'm not certain how it will turn out. I've been wanting to write it for quite some time now but, to be honest with you, I hesitated because of the person involved in this story. You guessed it: it's my better half. I've been working him for weeks and I think I finally wore him down. This post may be even considered as the continuation of my post about beauty of imperfection. I was inspired to tell this story by young girls, like my daughter, who found themselves in the somewhat serious and longer relationships, usually with guys who are "almost" perfect. Those girls believe firmly that they can change their man once they live together under the same roof. To DIY a perfect husband or partner so to speak. Husband improvement project. Now, I've seen things and lived long enough to know it doesn't work that way. So whenever I hear something that let me believe this particular girl might think she can change her partner or his bad habits, I tell her my story about two dirty socks.
It all started insanely long ago when I studied at the university and got to know this young boy with the most beautiful hair, lips and eyes in the world. We were only nineteen years young. Aside from not being able to repair home appliances (very big deal as I come from a DIY family!), he was a very nice guy and I was madly in love with him. I couldn't wait to live with him together. Four years later we married and moved to our first apartment. As many of you may already know, dating and actually living together isn't the same thing. I knew my young husband was always very orderly, sometimes even excessively so. Luckily for me, he continued to be that way and from the beginning on we did our household chores together (thank you, dear mother-in-law!). But there was one thing that drove me nuts each day! He used to leave his two dirty socks inside-out on the floor beside the bed each evening and forgot to put them away in the morning. So whenever I looked there they were: two dark stains on the floor. In the beginning, I asked him nicely to put them away in the laundry. Didn't work. At all. Then I started being upset about it and not too rarely we had a fiercely dispute because of that. One day it all escalated and I was so mad that I didn't want to speak with him. But the socks were still on the floor beside the bed. We didn't speak so I couldn't tell him to put his damn socks away! So as I was cleaning the bedroom and putting things away, I grabbed his socks and put them in the laundry. Thing I refused to do till that day. It took me 2 seconds. Everything was calm.
It might seem dumb to you, but it took me more than one year to understand that he's been putting up with my flaws (open books and magazines literally everywhere) while I raged about his socks. We were still madly in love. So we decided to not take this matter too seriously (apparently people freak out and divorce over a toothpaste?!). It was so easy and so simple: to love each other for all the good reasons and to accept each other's insignificant flaws. The secret is to not sweat the small stuff. There is no need to ruin the whole marriage or relationship over the toilet seat and the toothpaste! You can't change another person, you can only love them for who they are. So you have to be ready to love, accept, respect and tolerate the person as a whole, with all his good and eventually bad sides. That's it!
As for my DH's two dirty socks, they still live on the floor beside the bed. Occasionally, I make a joke about them and my husband put them away and promise me in all seriousness never to leave them there again. We are still madly in love.