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  • Kristen Kehoe

The Best Kind of Interruptions (& why we need them)

As with everything, I must begin with the perspective-lens before I go and tell you about all of the interruptions I took part in this week. This little piece of perspective comes via my oldest sister, Bri, who is the literal definition of chaos...and she's one of those crazies who enjoys it.

While I think that attending a planned matinee on a Saturday counts as an interruption and choosing chaos because, you know, there were, in fact other people in the theater, and the play did not start promptly at 2 as stated, I was on the phone with Bri when she had to hang up on me because she thought her youngest son was in the bathroom yelling for her, when he was actually playing hide-&-seek with her (unbeknownst to her, obviously; what fun is telling someone when you're playing a game that includes them?), and she had to go find him...because she had zero idea how long he'd been hiding or where he was. God bless you, Zachary. I laughed for a good long while.

Back to my completely scheduled, not-at-all chaotic Saturday: Because I have a beautiful friend who is always moving and grooving and doing more than watching Netflix (so unlike me, Michelle, which is only one of the many reasons I love you), Liv and I got to go to the Corvallis High School production of "Cinderella" with some of our besties this weekend, and it was a blast. Theater is Liv's jam, and it's always a good reminder to me that while I enjoy dragging her skiing or mountain biking or hiking (read: we both cry and hug it out at the end), doing something like attending the theater and watching her be enthralled the entire time is pretty gosh darn magical. Especially when we walk out, and it's not Cinderella that she wants to be, but the King's Page because he had "funny lines and got to be goofy."

This is the first interruption of my 8th week. (Also, I've done the math. It feels like I've been doing this whole "choose chaos and interrupt your goddamned rut" for approximately a million years, and not only has it been just 8 weeks, I have 44 weeks to go. That number is unfathomable to me right now.)

Before we went, Livvy and Old Man River started her Invention Convention project (which is definitely more of a creation as I am dead-certain her "Books on a not-so Silver Platter" book holder exists in some other form, but her slogan is adorable). She did the measuring, the cutting, and the screwing, and while she's happy to have a mostly-finished project now, I think Liv came to the conclusion that while coming up with the slogan and marketing campaign was fun, building seems like a good job for someone else. This is pretty on-brand for her personality:)

Which brings us to my third and final interruption for week 8.

A few years ago, I got Old Man River a Valentine's Day Card that said something along the lines of, "I love you every day...even when I want to karate kick you in the face."

This about sums up our communication for the week.

Anyone with a long-term partner is like, yep, I get it, because the hardest thing about being committed to someone and sharing your everyday life is that you're both flawed individuals (though on Wednesday, I did not, in fact, think I was flawed. Just him, and I was ready to point them all out. I can reasonably say he felt the same about me). River and I don't fight a lot. It's not really our style. We're both the youngest, which means we've been nurtured from a young age to avoid conflict for fear of a beat-down by one of our older siblings, but we do disagree sometimes. In almost 14 years of marriage I've come to understand the most difficult disagreement between partners: the one where neither of you is really wrong, you're just not on the same side as your husband or wife.

It was when this realization came sometime around Thursday afternoon that I had to make a choice: stay irritated, find comfort in my "listen to me, I need you to agree with me" attitude, or I could interrupt my shitfit and tell Old Man River I loved him.

For us, that's all it takes to diffuse tension: the olive branch a few hours after the epic hand-gesturing, tight-lipped, sarcastic, "I hear what you're saying, but..." And this olive branch is always a reminder of who the other person is to us.

And so, on week 8, more than halfway through, I offered those words to my husband, and I interrupted my own cycle of pettiness and irritation so I could come to the conclusion by Friday evening that no matter how much you love your partner, no matter how deeply ingrained this love for them is inside of you, sometimes, you still fucking disagree, and there's not much you can do about it.

To River: I love you anyways. Always. Even if I hate your tone. (Whoopsie, looks like I still think I'm right ;) )

Here's to your week 8, loves, and 44 more chances to embrace or reject chaos, interrupting your life however you need.


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