In which I didn’t pick a fight!

by Hallie @ Moxie Wife on May 1, 2014

Do you know what I love? Sending Dan my latest blog post which includes the line…

“Don’t get me wrong, had you peeked into the windows of my home these past few months, you probably wouldn’t have seen a serene woman down on her knees. But you might have seen a wife who poured out a bit more love…”

…after I’d spent the last 24 hours glaring at him, grunting rather than speaking, and just generally stomping around like my three-year-old daughter. (Wince.)

Charlie is sleeping through longer stretches at night (and now I am terrified that I just uttered those words! please don’t leave me, sweet slumber!), nursing is less frequent, and I suspect that my hormones are all confused and angry and mercurial.

Unpicked Strawberries.jpg

Everything has been irritating me.


So, just to recap, I’d been glaring and stomping for days when I felt inspired to write the lobster post.

At first I felt dishonest. Or at least like I was being a bit misleading. But then I thought back on this week and realized that it was actually the perfect example of the ways in which Dan and I have grown as a couple.

Freshly Picked.jpg

What I felt like doing throughout the last few days was to bring to his attention every last little thing that I found maddening. And I’m sure what he felt like doing was to tell me about the things that he felt found maddening (namely me, my glaring, grunting, and stomping).

But I bit my tongue because somewhere deep down inside I knew that I was being irrational and that any pleasure I’d derive from venting would quickly be crushed by disharmony. (Apparently I also managed to find of modicum self-control at some point.)

As for Dan, he didn’t comment on my passive-aggressive tantrum though I’m sure he could have offered me all sorts of constructive criticism. Instead, he just let it play out, knowing, I suppose, that I’d eventually find my way back to serenity (or at least stability).

photo (15).jpg

And that feels pretty great to me. No, I didn’t smile in spite of inner turmoil and yes, I derived a certain ugly satisfaction from making my displeasure known (albeit in a less verbal way than I once would have) but I didn’t pick a fight.

I didn’t pick a fight!!!

The storm rolled through, and the trees bent in the wind, but then the sun came shining back through the leaves and all was well. The damage was minimal and love reigned supreme.

So, yeah, progress.

{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

Elisa | blissfulE May 1, 2014 at 8:28 am

Great post! It’s the small strides forward that lead to big improvements.

You mentioned hormones… something that has changed my life is natural progesterone cream. You probably know all about it already, but I thought I’d mention it in case it’s something to consider. I used to use Happy PMS cream, but I’ve switched to Whole Family Products Cycle Balance Cream. They are both good, just the Cycle Balance absorbs more quickly into my skin (less greasy feeling).

Theresa Breslin May 1, 2014 at 8:41 am

“any pleasure I’d derive from venting would quickly be crushed by disharmony” … I’ve never thought of it this way, but how true. I need these words taped to my fridge or something.

Julia May 1, 2014 at 10:14 am

That line jumped out at me, too! It’s a good strategy for choosing battles wisely.

(Also, Hallie — those strawberries look amazing. I have one sad little strawberry plant hanging on by a thread after a cold and raw rainy spell. I’m basically drooling over these pictures.)
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Lydia May 1, 2014 at 10:14 am

I love when I realize I didn’t pick a fight. It is so unbelievable not easy for me to not pick fights when I’m feeling like that. Good job, Hallie!

Rachel Parker May 1, 2014 at 10:17 am

The longer I’m married, the easier this lesson becomes. Well, most of the time. There are still times when I need to throw my tantrum just to get it out of my system, but I’m lucky to have a kind and patient husband, haha ;)
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Anna May 1, 2014 at 10:23 am

Congratulations on your victory, Hallie! I am definitely walking with you on this one. Refusing to give in to my temper is a huge challenge for me. Praise God for the grace He pours into marriage so we have the strength to be sweet to each other!

Hallie @ Moxie Wife May 1, 2014 at 10:23 am

“It’s a good strategy for choosing battles wisely.” I hadn’t thought of it that way. Love it!

We went to a U-Pick strawberry farm last weekend. I wish I grow such beauties! I bow before your brave efforts! ;)

Hallie @ Moxie Wife May 1, 2014 at 10:24 am

Thanks, sweet pea! I admit, I’m ridiculously giddy about this silly victory.

Hallie @ Moxie Wife May 1, 2014 at 10:24 am

Emailed you! xoxox

Hallie @ Moxie Wife May 1, 2014 at 10:25 am

Kindred spirits, we are. ;)

Hallie @ Moxie Wife May 1, 2014 at 10:25 am


Hallie @ Moxie Wife May 1, 2014 at 10:26 am

We should make magnets. ;)

Jenny May 1, 2014 at 11:16 am

And then there was the time when I didn’t pick a fight per se, but felt the need to correct him when at every mystery during rosary, he would announce it and I would re announce the correct mystery…until I realized it actually was Wednesday and not Tuesday…and he was right all along…and more than that, each time I corrected him, he did not correct me But I didn’t actually pick a fight, right? And he very patiently let me run my course. Thank God for mercy.
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Lisa May 1, 2014 at 12:06 pm

Love this, Hallie. Thanks for posting. :)
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Caroline M. May 1, 2014 at 1:07 pm

Man, I really need to work on that. For some reason I have this insatiable urge to correct at every juncture. Pride thing I guess. It’s even more tempting with my husband because he’s so intelligent that whenever I catch a mistake it’s like A-ha! You’re not perfect after all. Real mature.
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Caroline M. May 1, 2014 at 1:08 pm

I really love how honest you are in this post. You didn’t sugar-coat the fact that you were seething inside, or how you acted. I also like that you celebrate the fact that there wasn’t a fight. Sometimes I feel like unless everything I do is perfect that there’s no virtue in it (holdover from my Calvinist days I guess). This was very encouraging, thank you so much!
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Britt May 1, 2014 at 4:37 pm

Man, what a post! Thanks so much for your honesty. I really need to learn to let things go, too – one of those being my attitude ;) Thank you for this, and I’m proud of you!
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Nell May 2, 2014 at 12:26 am

Love the honesty! Love the perspective.
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Laura May 2, 2014 at 6:53 am

i was at the height of bloated irritability, when my husband called me multiple times while i was in the middle of teaching a class, asking if he could bring home a pizza to make dinner easier. the “bring home” and “make easier” part never reached my ears, because i was too annoyed by the fact that he kept calling while i was teaching. (side note: i have ten students who resemble a kennel of rabid raccoons…it takes all of my everything to stay composed, and a repeatedly ringing cell phone is not helpful) i might have wanted to rip his head off through the phone. and i might have tried to rip it off later at home, with subtle sarcastic comments and big heavy sighs. it is not easy to not pick a fight when the mere sound of another person breathing makes you want to throw the cat out the window….
i applaud you. well done, servant…well done :-)

Tanya Gallo May 2, 2014 at 9:45 am

Hallie, Hallie, Hallie…you made me so sad after I read the lobster post. You are an amazing woman! You need to take two steps back and look at all you’ve done and what you will do. You are an inspiration to many (see all the comments above). I don’t love to see anyone struggle with self control but I’m glad to see that I am not the only one that has to work at it. Can’t wait to see you at Edel or down the street at Therese’s soon!

Cottage By The Sea May 2, 2014 at 11:37 am

I love your honesty and I simply MUST have a strawberry today after seeing your scrumptious photos of them. (I might dip mine in chocolate!) Have a wonderful day. Tia
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Jennifer @ Little Silly Goose May 2, 2014 at 3:54 pm

Feeling you on the hormones thing. My son is also nursing less frequently now, and whew, headaches and mood swing craziness… no fun! Marriage can be so hard some days, but it feels like we might actually be getting better at dealing with the challenges (hope I’m not jinxing myself with that statement). Anyway, thanks for another lovely post.
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Julia May 4, 2014 at 1:11 pm

Ah, okay, strawberry farm — that makes me feel better. All the same, your post inspired me to pick up a much happier looking starter plant when I was out shopping yesterday. I’ll have to document it in a future post should it bear good fruit.
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