31 January 2008


Last night I went out to dinner with some friends. It was a really nice evening -- good conversation, good food, good complaining about husbands snoring, good prosecco, but for the first part of dinner something kept niggling at me. Worry.

I didn't go home after work, but instead went out for a pre-dinner manicure. (An excellent way to start an evening!) I emailed Rob right before I left work and I was hoping to hear from him to confirm that he had picked up Zoë and everything was OK. He never emailed me back. (We both take our Crackberries everywhere and communicate largely via email rather than actually talking on the phone.) I kept checking my phone, but no message to reassure me that all was well. I started to get concerned. At 7:23 PM when I checked for any messages for the 10th time, I realized that at that point, if something had been wrong -- if Rob didn't get Zoë for some reason, if she was sick, if who knows... -- barring immense disaster I would have heard about it by now from someone.

And then I got annoyed. Rob works late 9 nights out of 10 and almost never checks to see if Zoë and I made it home safely because he doesn't worry about it. He already knows he would hear if something was wrong. As much as I hate to admit it, he's got the right idea in this one. I'm sure I can't be alone in the worrying, but I could surely save myself some angst if I could adopt a little more of his attitude.

And yes, I know I could have just called, but I didn't -- probably because I didn't want Rob to think I was checking up on him or something. I don't know really, but it made sense at the time. Once I had my realization I was able to relax and enjoy the rest of the evening without most of the worry I had built up and when I got home everything was just fine -- Zoë was well into dreamland and my husband was snoring away.


Anonymous said...

It may be irrational and sexist, but I'm right there with you. I think it's in large part because it's normally your job, so you want to make sure that the substitute (in this case, your partner) took on the responsibility as planned, but I think there's some built-in worry mechanism that they don't have. My husband would never think of checking to see if I fed them, or put them to bed, or any of those things. But when I check, half the time they haven't been done. (Pick-up is something else--it's got to be done or you know there's a problem!) I was absolutely stunned when I came home half an hour after my youngest's bedtime last night to find out that he actually had been put to bed. (Apparently, that was by said youngest's request, so it has yet to be proven that partner is a responsible person.)

Chris (still anonymous because she doesn't have an account)

ZoesMom said...

Chris -- I think you're right about the built-in worry mechanism. I can never go to sleep for the night without checking Zoe -- even if I was the one to put her to bed.

Anonymous said...

That worry mechanism is a doozy- I think it clicks on as soon as the babies arrive- via your womb or however they enter your life. Even when my husband "takes the monitor" and sleeps on the sofa to let me get a good night sleep- I can't help but keep one ear open for the 2 year old- and the 3 week old, well, needless to say he's rarely out of my sight.
Maybe it turns off when they leave for college? - ht