Thursday, December 27, 2012


...sometimes at all costs as the expression goes. It's a sports analogy, a loose one.
I like to win. Not a dirty win, but I like to win even if it takes an extra bit of elbow grease, a out-playing-type of approach. I like the big wins but I appreciate the small ones too. The ones that sometimes only you know about (and the handful of girlfriends who, when you reach your late thirties {last thirty} you are lucky enough to have who know every single win and loss in your life, big and small. And who know just how big those small things can be).

I've thought about the concept of winning at all costs a lot over the past few days. Fighting with my husband over Christmas, our first Christmas as a married couple. Me, nitpicking things in an irritable way. Him, way over trying to see the humour in it all (usually he can, it's one of his many gifts, one that I cherish the most).  Me, trying to turn things around in the argument. Me, being petty and silly knowing I don't care, really, that he forgot to wear his wedding ring for an evening out with friends.
Me, wanting to win at all costs, knowing that the big losses (not having my Dad for the second Christmas in a row) trump all those wins. Me, wanting to be right, for my husband to KNOW I'm right.
Me, ashamed of myself.

Don't get me wrong, it's not all bad. I've nursed myself through a sucky cold over the past few days and that has definitely contributed to my thrumming mood swings. As I type this, the dining room blinds are open letting that particular brand of winter light in--both gray and white, the brightness of new snow, the dullness of a cloud-riddled sky. I'm in my robe, typing away on the laptop, flannel pajamas (they are as a line in a movie once proclaimed "becoming a uniform") but not in a bad way.
Not in an "oh God I should get the hell up and get moving kind of way" because I'm not going to do that. I'm tired. November and it's events zapped me. And I didn't win, not really, not in the way I wanted to. I feel like, instead, it was a big ugly loss. With all sorts of crossed-wires, all sorts of bitterness on my part, and a whole heaping helping of "taking it out on the ones you love".
Oh yea. That. THAT. Huge loss. Big.

Back to winning at all costs. I've had to put it in perspective. After all, if I am to continue to be viewed as a responsible adult, I have to let go of some of the childishness of clinging to my own version of right-ness and winning.  Not saying I'm wrong with the situation at work.  In fact, I think I may be so right that having all that right-ness staring me down, in my face, is a constant reminder that there are so many things wrong with my workplace I don't even know where to start.  So I'm not going to bother at this point.

I'm trying to 'be still' as my beloved aunt always counselled me to be in these types of situations.
Be still means don't do anything rash.  Be still means, by all means, plan your next move, but do it quietly. A friend of mine recently described an argument he was enmeshed with as a chess game, and there was a name for the particular series of moves that had played out.  It's kind of like that, I guess.
And it has the same result: Stalemate. Where no one wins (frustrating as all hell for me) and no one really loses (a tie to me is like a loss.  I have to work on that).

For now I am on the couch, robe-ensconced, fingers dancing across the board, watching winter light. Soft white snow, my cold dark heart. Thinking about coffee and how this is likely one of the last posts I'll write this year, save for my yearly wrap-up about what I've learned (precious little, clearly) and what I'd like to see unfurl differently next year (I've yet to get through a holiday season without SOME kind of conflict).  The nature of conflict and why this need to be right and victorious seems to be so innate in me. The need to change some of that.

Peace people. The light outside is exceptionally striking today.

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