It’s a brave man who walks his wife into Tiffany’s in NYC and walks out without buying her anything.
Well, he didn’t actually get all the way out. He got as far as the elevator and asked the deadly words, “So, what would you like to do now?”
I am a long time practitioner of Buddhism yet short-lived on the practice of ahimsa. Fortunately, he was saved by my never-ending optimism that he can be trained in limbic telepathy. The limbic system is made up of organs in our brain that is sometimes referred to collectively as the “emotional brain.” It’s actually not so much a “system” as a complex network of interconnections among structures that deal with threat assessment and responses, memory and learning, and keeping the rationally-driven frontal lobe off line. It is also apparently sensitive to being shut down in Tiffany’s. In NYC. At the ring counter. Not that I’m bitter or anything.
After I pushed the elevator call button into the elevator shaft, I think he caught on because I found myself ushered back to the ring counter. It’s cute ring. Thin, unassuming. Squarish yet round. I’m not much of a diamond girl so these itty-bitty chips are quire acceptable.
We dance with this particular expectation in our relationship. I suspect, all relationships do. Why can’t s/he just know? All the cues are there. All the anticipation. So when there is a huge disconnect between what I anticipate was going to happen and what does happen, it’s a shock. I watched this happen a few times recently; observed it closely. There is a subtle assumption that I’d missed in previous experiences: “You’d think someone who knows me so well would…” There it was! Just as no good deed goes unpunished, all good marital sensitivity gets held against you. A wacky “if—>then” sequence that can get quite deadly in the trenches of neediness, craving, and insecurity about the relationship.