I suppose my blog is pretty much like my real life... eventless. I do what I am supposed to do, and that takes up much of my life. ...Minyanim, Torah learning, spending time with my wife and my family, work, etc. There's not much time left for excitement.
One thing that has been troubling me recently is that my wife is a bit on edge. While being slightly stressed out is one thing, and losing one's temper is another thing, she does neither. She pretends to be very cool, then today she takes the baby and walks out on me again. This freaks me out and I have spoken to her about it before and she denies its existence.
My biggest fear is that my marriage will fall apart and that I won't be able to stop it. I suppose because it happened to a close friend of mine and because it happened to my parents, I am sensitized to signs of it. I have told my wife on many occasions that I am not a mindreader and that she needs to communicate her feelings to me but she disagrees and feels that I should know how she's feeling when she is feeling it.
Over Purim, I made a few mistakes which in my mind were not mistakes (and I still believe they aren't) but to her, she felt I was not taking care of her. Before the holiday, I asked around (we are new to the community) and learned that there would be 1) a Purim party (from a conversation a few weeks earlier from one of the community members), and 2) that there would be two Megillah readings -- first for the general public and second for those that missed the first one. I did this research before the holiday to make sure that if my wife misses the first one because the baby starts crying, etc., that if she'll have to take him out, she'll have a chance to hear the Megillah on the second round while I take care of the baby. I even spoke to her about this and my findings. When we got to shul, there was only one Megillah reading, no party, and no food (I was surprised that there was no food because the shul usually has lots of food for the various weekly Kiddush, so I was sure they would at least put some of that out, but they didn't.) I was surprised and she was livid. I asked the Rabbi when the second Megillah reading would be, and he said that he's making one for his wife and a few women at his house, so I felt good that my wife would be able to attend that. My wife was upset by that and her reasons were understood to me. Either way, when we got back to the house, she got out of the car and in anger and without saying goodbye, she walked off to the Rabbi's house and left me with the baby, whom I then put to sleep, heated up food, and waited for my wife's return.
The next day was the Purim seudah which we were invited to the Rabbi's house for the meal. I was sure that the other community members would also be there so that we can farbreng and drink to fulfill one of the Mitzvahs of Purim. When we got there the only people that were in attendance other than us were old people and slightly-crazy people (it doesn't matter to me that they weren't religious). I made the best of it and later when we spoke about it, my wife told me that in Chabad communities, only rejects who don't have a place to go end up at the Chabad Rabbi's house.
That night was Shabbos, and I arranged for us to be invited over to my friend and chevrusa's house. The company there was good and the people were our age. One of the guests was my friend's neighbor who he had befriended and was trying to convince him to start putting on Tefillin every day. While I usually have stayed far away from the Mivtzoim effort of bringing Jews closer to performing the commandments (Mitzvahs), this time after a few drinks, I joined in. Earlier when I noticed that our son had went to the bathroom, I alerted my wife about it and she said she didn't want to change the diaper. I asked if we need to do anything and she said no and resumed the meal. I was thinking that maybe we should leave, but if my wife was okay with it, so was I. Keeping an eye on my wife for some time longer, I saw that my son was playing with the toys or that my wife was holding him, but either way, conversation was happening amongst the women and my wife was a part of that so I didn't mind resuming conversation on the men's side. I engaged the guy in what my wife describes as being a 1.5 hour discussion on why he should be putting on Tefillin, and among other conversations which included laughing and even crying from laughter in conversations that permeated the whole room, my wife was livid later because I didn't read her mind that we should leave. We left with everyone else when the meal ended and while I was glowing that we had such an "atom-bomb" kind of conversation that surely changed this man's life, she was upset that I wasn't paying attention to her during this last conversation and that I should have sensed that she wanted to go home.
The second Shabbos meal by day was by another friend of mine (all of the people we go to are people who I befriended because my wife has not made much of an effort to be part of the community or to make friends) where my wife had a good time. The people were our age, and our son got a chance to play with people his own age. Everything went wonderfully and I believe my wife even could have made a friend.
...I will continue this story in the next post.