First of all, thank you for all the support on the previous Coffee Share. I read the comments to my husband letting him know there are people out there who went through what he went through. Though my anger and frustration have long been the fuel to what I write, it never is easy to write about it and get it out there in such a public space. To me, it’s how I “deal with it.” I am not really the type to keep my head down and move on to let my anger fester. I’ve been told being disagreeable is not “culturally appropriate” — more on that in a future post.
The Wedding Weekend
I missed last weekend’s coffee share because I was at San Diego for my cousin’s wedding. It was really nice to be at an event, there was this sense of normalcy. At the wedding, I realized certain contrasts between my family and my husband’s family.
For years my husband has declared that he loves my family a lot more than his side. He wants to be with them all time. He’s always enthusiastic when anyone from my family visits LA — even if it’s on a work night. I always feel guilty every time he says that because I interpret it as he loves the family he gained more than the family he was raised with. Nobody chooses the family they’re raised with and as I get older, I find myself luckier every year that I have the family I have. He’s said it to my friends and he’s even said it with some of his family members present (awkward). It’s not like I can go to his family and suggest to them “you should be more like my family.” That’s why I have that guilt.
At the wedding, I finally understood my husband’s feelings. I thought to myself, I want to be with my family all the time. I am not saying my family is perfect — no family is perfect — but in contrast, all my in-laws do is complain and ask for stuff they haven’t even earned. I find it triggering at times.
Declutter the Kitchen
Actually more like we have a small roach problem and we’re forced to declutter the kitchen. For the past few days, I’ve been managing this roach problem in the kitchen. It is contained in a small corner of the kitchen because that’s the warmest spot of the house because our small appliances are there; we have a rice cooker, microwave, and air fryer. It started manageable with one, but then came another one, and another one, and then there were even more. And don’t forget the eggs — wherever they were… So I decided it was best to hire a professional to get rid of them. In preparation for the treatment, we (read: my husband and I) emptied and cleaned all the cabinets and counter space for a couple of evenings after work. On the morning of the treatment, I did more cleaning and decided to start my workday late. I cleaned the oven — I even vacuumed inside the oven. It was so OCD-inducing. My husband worked in the morning and went home early to greet the terminator and took the dogs out for a few hours while the house was being treated.
The exterminator will return in three weeks to do the second treatment. In the meantime, all the cabinets and counterspace must remain empty. I thought to be myself, wow this is going to be so tough. I use the counterspace to prep food so that leaves me with this 30-inch by 30-inch bar table to do any meal prep. BILs like to leave food on the counter and I noticed they don’t like to eat leftovers so it’s just left there for days. The other day when I was cleaning, I found fries in the air fryer. I tossed the fries and the airfryer itself. On treatment day my husband threw the ricecooker and microwave — the suspected roach home. And also we are keeping the house cold in the meantime with the exception of Lana’s room — she has a space heater. It has been very cold with night temperatures in the 40s F (~4 C)
(Re)Invigorate: January Review
I did not really have a monthly theme around my word of the year. Initially, there were themes — I wanted to (re)invigorate my interest in travel and dedicate a whole month to it — but I guess I ran out of ideas. To start off simple, I journaled things that invigorated me like speaking how I feel, visiting new coffee places, exploring new places, etc. Yesterday, I took my kid and my dogs to Griffith Park for the LA Zoo’s Family Nature Club. After the class, I decided to venture to a cafe I’ve been meaning to go to for a long time. When I drove by the cafe, there was a long line. I did not have a baby carrier or a stroller in my car, so rather than waiting in this long line with my kid and my two dogs, we went to another place on my food bucket list. On the drive to the second place, I realized my excursions to different restaurants and shops made it to my list of things that (re)invigorated me.
I learned also to be invigorated means getting myself through ugly moments and not dwelling in the toxic positivity. Speaking how I feel isn’t easy, but once I get to it, being on the other side of fear and above judgment feels so good. When it came to dealing with the roaches in the kitchen, I almost did not hire an exterminator because I knew life would be inconvenient for everyone for a while. I could have stuck with toxic positivity and say, “It’s totally fine — I can keep playing whack-a-roach and have my husband disassemble the small appliances to look for the roaches and their eggs.” Telling us this lie would burn us out so we invested in hiring an exterminator and I will happily live through the complaining. But you know what, despite the inconvenience of having all our stuff in boxes and less workspace, I get to use the opportunity to evaluate our stuff and kitchen space.