**The following post is written with humorous reflection, about anger in a marriage. The events recalled did not occur in the presence of children, and at no time did either I or Mr ReloVertigo consider the other to be abusive, or consider ourselves to be abused. Domestic abuse is a very serious issue. If you are, or someone you know is being abused:
In the USA, please call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)
In any other country, please go to this International Directory of Domestic Violence Agencies
**

Moody. That’s a label I’ve been assigned since I was small. For as long as I can remember, stuff has been ticking me off. I’m mostly cheerful. When I was in high school, people used to ask my best friend and I why we were always laughing. As if we might be up to something nefarious! Why would that be the only cause for our good humor? Possibly because there had been a few legendary public incidents, in which certain “victims” had been the objects of my fearsome wrath? Ok, not so much.

Within my family, it seems to be a spectator sport, especially at big family gatherings like holidays, to pick and pick at me until I finally blow. And then, laughter abounds.

Serious domestic matters, however, were always the source of my shortest wick. Please don’t be too harsh with me, Friendly Reader. This was about twenty years ago. I am not this same person anymore, thank God.

Mr ReloVertigo has known since day one how to light the fuse, fan it to make it burn faster, and then run. In the early years of our marriage, I had very little control over my temper, where he was concerned. We would argue until I boiled over. And then, I would grab the nearest projectile and let ‘er rip. All types of objects have been heaved in ol’ Mr’s direction. A frying pan, a candy dish, a dinner plate (empty), various Pyrex cookware – which, by the way, is not shatter-proof, and many other hefty items have been hoisted aloft in the expression of my ire. It must be noted that none of these objects connected with his person. He’s an agile guy, my husband.

One day, I can’t recall what the fight was about, I was so furious. I threw yet another item in The Mr’s direction. But on this occasion, something flicked on in his mind. He became equally furious with me. He picked up the handy missile, and threw it right back. That was a shocking moment right there. As a child who one day realizes the parental power is purely illusory, The Husband had experienced this lightbulb moment in which it finally dawned on him that he could give me a taste of my own medicine. I was outraged at this offense, and stupidly thought to throw it back at him! But as I got hold of it, my mind raced to assess the risk of battle. I could have thrown it, but what if he threw it back again and it hit me? I remember relaxing my posture and putting whatever it was back down. Promptly, his face gave away his recognition of the new balance of power. I was still angry, and frustrated at being unable to lob a rock, but it was a new day in the ReloVertigo house.

Some time post-power struggle, we were painting the kitchen of our first house together. The first house we owned. And the first place we really learned what fixing up a place can do to two people in love. As we painted, The Husband kept doing things that were screwing up the paint job, at least in my mind. I began to believe he was completely incapable of following instructions. An aside – The Husband is now an engineer. A brilliant and capable man, whom I am proud to call my husband. But painting that kitchen, it was like I had the Three Stooges with a paint brush.

He was across the room from me. I had an empty paint roller handle in my hand. He pulled one too many blunders, and I cocked my arm, preparing to heave that roller. He picked up a large paint brush, dipped it in the paint, and held it up, saying, “Go for it.” The implication was clear. Toss the handle, get a face full of wet green paint. And he was smiling. A huge grin that said he was hoping I’d lose control, so he could smack me in the face with a wet paint brush. I slammed the roller onto the kitchen counter and ordered him out of the house. I said I’d finish painting by myself. I’ve never seen someone drop a brush and split so fast. It was only after he was gone that my brain informed me that he’d been playing me. He WANTED me to kick him out. He didn’t want to paint a kitchen with the Queen of Anal Retention! I could Just imagine him laughing as he drove over to my parents’ place to hang out and watch sports.

Yep. I’m pretty sure they were all laughing together. Does that sound paranoid? Oh man. That’s a whole other blog post.

This post was inspired by The Daily Prompt

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