Saturday, August 23, 2008

Winning with J

J likes to know when I will be coming from late from work. Even with grandma at home with her these days, she likes to see me back at the "regular" time each evening. Some days, I miscalculate how soon I can be home and realize I am running well behind schedule once I'm on the road. It upsets J that I did not call ahead and let her know I was going to be delayed. After having repeated this mistake a few times, I told her one Friday morning that I was going to meeting a friend for coffee after work that evening and would be home around 7:00 p.m.

"You were not supposed to tell me that in the morning" she protested loudly.

"Why not ? I thought you liked knowing when I would be late" I asked surprised.

"But not in the morning. Now, I am going to be sad all day that you will be late. You need to call me just when you know that you will be late" she explained sounding really hurt. I was left fumbling for something to say in my defense.

"You need to call me when you leave from work to meet your friend and call me again when you are ready to come home" she added.

Needless to say, I forgot to do both that evening. But knowing J, I would not have scored any points even if I had done her bidding. She'd have just come with some another condition of satisfaction and a different rule to follow go forward. I tease her sometimes that she must have been my mother-in-law in a previous life because only they have such difficult and dynamic rules of engagement that the daughter-in-law can never conform to satisfactorily.

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