The Things You Don’t Expect

Dearest Rachel –

When I agreed to take Logan in as a roomer for the next six to twelve months, I asked my folks for advice on what I needed to do to make things official. Some of the things they had to say made sense, and I adopted them, such as restricting the length of time (since it’s bad enough the Daniel is too comfortable here to go out and make his way in the world; the last thing I need is to do the same thing for a relative stranger, especially if – God willing – I should find “Megumi” along the way, and want to set up housekeeping as a newly-married couple). Others, like putting together a list of rules, I never got around to; in my ex post facto defense, I always assumed that there would be things that I wouldn’t even think of to put down on paper that would become an issue after the fact.

To say that things ‘have become an issue’ is probably overstating the matter – I can guarantee that he has no idea that thing was ‘bothering’ me (again, an overstatement, but I’ll explain as I go along) – but sharing spaces with a new person, with a mind of his own, making his own decisions, leads to him making some that I never considered, and didn’t expect. But now that he’s here, and chosen to do this or that, I need to either live with it and work around it, or make accommodations to change his behavior without being too obvious or demanding about it.

It started on the very first morning, in fact. He’d actually asked me when Daniel and I got up in the morning, so as to not conflict his own morning routine with ours. Given that I don’t have a set schedule (although I do wake up organically earlier than I might like, but that’s life), and Daniel can sleep through a lot of my own rattling around, I assured him that his need to get up, get washed, get dressed and get out the door by 7:30 every weekday morning would not be a concern. Besides, even if he did wake Daniel as he went about his morning routine, that might just put our son on a more standard footing with the world at large, as far as waking hours went (which, as it turned out, proved to be absolutely correct, as he was up – and listening to his usual channels – by about eight).

What I hadn’t counted upon was the fact that he would be accomplishing his morning ablutions in the master bathroom, just outside our bedroom door. I’m not claiming that he woke me up – for the most part, I wake up between six and seven anyway, so I was already awake when I heard the noise of the showerhead running – but it did prevent me from leaving the room. Which sounds like it should be no problem – he didn’t wake me up, and I don’t need to go anywhere, so what am I complaining about? Well, about that…

Do you remember what you would need to do, the first thing upon waking up every morning? And, to be sure, there were times when the shower was running when you did so. But when it’s your husband who’s in there, who you know every inch about, that’s not an issue; you can walk right in, bold as brass. In fact, you could be fairly sure I would welcome your presence.

I hardly need to tell you that’s not the case here.

So, I’m stuck in the bedroom, unable to do anything or go anywhere. And while I may not be as immediately urgent as you would be in a similar situation, this poses a problem that never even crossed my mind when I accepted his request to move in. To be honest, I assumed that he would be using the bathroom upstairs, right next to the yellow room that he essentially calls ‘home’ for now; in retrospect, that may have been somewhat naïve of me. If nothing else, the tub up there lacks a shower curtain; I need to get something for that. Then again, that room needs serious updating at this point, especially when compared to ‘our’ bathroom; I can’t blame him for preferring it, even if I did install a curtain upstairs.

And even if I did, what would be the message I would be conveying at this point? ‘Stay upstairs, kid; I don’t want you down here getting in my way.’ Yeah, that’s not appropriate coming from me. Sometimes, the things that get under your skin are the sort of thing you never expected, but now that I’ve agreed to the situation, it’s something I’m going to have to live with for the time being.

So, keep an eye on me, honey, and wish me luck; I’m going to need it.

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I am Rachel's husband. Was. I'm still trying to deal with it. I probably always will be.

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