Monday, December 04, 2006

No more stress about my in-laws

Yesterday was good except for getting a little irritated at my husband for his absolute refusal to be an active participant in the whole Christmas season bit. I wanted him to go into Bath & Body Works with me as sort of a guinea pig. Try this on. If you were a guy, which you are, would you like this? Or do guys totally have to have unscented things? If you like cucumber-melon soap, does that also mean that you would like cucumber-melon lotion? Do you think my brother-in-law would like this? Would your brother like any of this? And while we're here, is there anything here that you especially like? I've already got you something, but I might be persuaded to get you something extra.

But no, he won't get out of the car. Now that we've already gone to the bookstore, and I've already gone with him to some camera place that I could care less about, and we have twenty minutes or so to kill before dinner so we might as well find something to do, he can't go with me to a store to do some actual Christmas shopping. He has to stay in the car and listen to a football game, which was not of any real importance to him when we were in the camera store.

The whole football thing has been mildly annoying. When we were dating he told me that he didn't even like football. Not the biggest lie he told me back then, but still a lie that influenced by decision to be with him. But usually, he doesn't really insist on watching it unless it's the Superbowl or something, and just having it on in the background while I'm reading or something else isn't that bad. But this year he has been more annoying than usual with the whole football thing, and seriously, you can't watch the game from with the car radio anyway.

The good news is that after seventeen years of marriage and stressing about the whole what do I get his family for Christmas, I don't have to worry about that anymore. There's this whole story about how that started, but I'll write that some other time. Let's just say that not only does he usually refuse to help me do the actual Christmas shopping, he's not even much help trying to figure out what anyone in his family might want for Christmas, and he can't be bothered to call and find out what their holiday plans are. So we often get invited to things at the last minute, that I am in no way prepared for.

This year he has decided that except for me and one brother, he doesn't have a family. They are dead to him, they don't exist, and we will not be doing any holiday stuff with them ever again. So except for that one brother, I no longer have to do any Christmas shopping for them, or wonder if I should make an extra dessert in case we go to someone's house, or even keep an evening open for them. I'm done with that. No more stressing about the in-laws.

I kind of thought this was coming last year, since after his mother died I thought he might take the opportunity to quit pretending to care about the rest of them. Which he more or less did, but he didn't actually come out an make an announcement. He just figured they'd get the hint and not get him anything for Christmas. But, having heard of no chance in plans, most of us went through this rather odd gift exchange through the one brother he actually does care about.

This year, I won't even have to do that. Which is great, and it leaves me more energy to think about what I'm getting my friends.

No comments: