I am a Self-Made Martyr.
I didn't always know this. In fact, it was only this last weekend that the truth of it hit me square in the brain. I confronted Brandon:
"I know what my problem is."
"No, seriously, I have this problem. I finally figured out what it is! I'm always going on and on and on about how I want you to be romantic and sweet --you know, plan dates and all that. But then when you do, I sabotage it --I find something to be upset about, and I get cranky about it or I just get mad that you did it. What is up with that? But it just doesn't apply to romance --I do the same thing when it comes to cleaning the house. I mean, when I came home from church today and saw that you did the dishes, was I thinking 'wow! Thanks, Brandon!'? No, I was thinking 'how come he didn't wipe off the counters?!!?' See! You see my problem?"
Brandon then just smiled at me and shrugged.
"I have just realized that I have this need to be a martyr. I seem to have this desire to complain about everything. But here's my question, though. How come you never told me, huh? How long have I been like this? And why didn't you tell me?!"
Brandon laughed and said "You've always been like this --it's part of your personality. I'm used to it. "
"Well, I don't like it! I've gotta change it!"
After speaking with some friends earlier this week, I have found that I'm not the only self-made martyr out there. I think sometimes we, as women, thrive on what we don't have. Janelle, who graciously opens her doors to us for Scripture Study each week, had a great point when she talked about the need some people (us, maybe? Or you, maybe?) have to profess their sacrifices. "Hey, look at me! I gave up all of this!" or "See these trials? Yep, they are hard. Let me tell you all about them and then you can see how humble I am to suffer through them so well." I think we're all guilty of that one. As mothers, we compare our adventures in parenting. "My kid is harder than your kid" and "I have another bake sale to get ready for", and "Oh, man, I can't remember what sleep is like", etc. tends to fill our conversations.
But what I discovered, is that when things do go my way (your way?), I can't stand it. How can I complain, compare, and pity myself when I'm actually happy? How can I say "look at how great I am, enduring this pain" when there is no pain? If women are that they might have joy, then why do I insist on not having it?
P.S. I'm glad I'm getting older. I keep learning so much about myself all the time. Who knew?