How to Compromise

I apologize immediately if you thought this post is an explanation or a discussion on how you can best learn to compromise with someone else. It’s not. I’m actually asking you how to compromise with someone else who at times feels like they hail from another time-space continuum. How do you do it?

I feel like sometimes I nail it, right on the head, that sweet spot known as a perfect compromise. The decision that gets both parties what they want satisfactorily without anyone feeling like major sacrifices took place. Other times, I feel like the only way to feel like justice is being served is to duke it out Hunger Games-style until one person is dead and the other left standing victorious and therefore able to make whatever the hell decision he/she wants to make. Is this just me?

hunger games

The more time that passes in our relationship, the less I can tell if we’re getting better or worse at compromising. It doesn’t matter if it’s a small or little thing. Most of the time, compromising feels like one of us is just giving up in order to move forward without a fight. Is that what compromise is in the end? Between two people who have chosen to spend their lives together, compromise = giving up? Should I be disappointed in this?

quick search of google gives you this definition of compromise

quick search of google gives you this definition of compromise

There are probably about a million things that Timmy and I agree on. But for those million things we agree on, there’s half we really don’t see eye to eye. Half of that stuff is non-important stuff that we can agree to compromise on, staying in that sweet spot zone. A quarter of non-agreeing stuff, I don’t think either one of us really cares about at all, so we agree to let the other person just have their way. But that last 1/4 of the stuff….holy shit, that’s the stuff that makes you stay awake at night, the stuff that you will destroy furniture and glassware for (not that I’ve done this), the items that you don’t think Satan or God could get you to change your thinking on.

Most of the stuff that Timmy and I agree on are those important life things, like core values, moral fiber, education, and relative equal standing in life. Those things have always been what I believe makes or breaks a relationship. If you can’t agree to the values that you hold dear in your own life, you have no chance of making it. I’ve experienced it before in past relationships and see loved ones’ relationships crumble all the time because the foundation they thought they had in common was built out of totally different and incompatible materials.

The stuff we don’t agree on, the items we would punch each other in the face over (if it were legal and not harmful), that’s the stuff I constantly struggle with deciding on how to compromise.

Take for example being punctual. In my family, we are HYSTERICAL about being places on time. This is not a joke. Many many many a fight has been launched because someone made the entire group late. It doesn’t even matter what we’re doing or where we’re going; it matters if we’re on time or not. I will admit that being punctual is probably one of the only things that gives me legit anxiety. And it’s a tangible anxiety that anyone can see starts to get worse and worse as the minutes tick by.

Timmy, on the other hand, I wonder if he can even tell time. I don’t say this to be a bitch, but to illustrate his inability to manage time. He is habitually at least 15 minutes late to everything, and when we have to go somewhere, that time has extended to two hours more than once. MULTIPLE HOURS LATE. Why…what…I mean, how is this even possible?!?!

When I get ready, I’m able to accurately estimate how long it takes me per item on my checklist: do hair (15 minutes), makeup (5 minutes), find outfit (5-10 minutes), pack (20-30 minutes), etc. It’s the planner in me. I know myself well enough to call it like I see it: I’m not spontaneous, I’m not chill, I’m not “fly by the seat of your pants”. I’m the complete opposite of all of that, and I love that about myself. I’ve been this way since I could form thoughts. I believe it really is a part of who I am and how I present myself to people. What I believe my planning and punctuality say about me is this: “Victoria is punctual and reliable. She wants me to trust that she will be places on time, be where she says she will be, that she is honest and trustworthy.”

I can’t even honestly tell you how Timmy approaches time management. I’ve never seen anything in my experience that suggests that he has a plan or is able to accurately estimate how long it takes him to do things. Most of the time, his time projections are off by about 20 minutes. From my viewpoint, he spends a lot of his time moving slowly, checking FB and his phones, stopping by the tv to watch ESPN, then moves on to do things on his checklist. We’ve been late to weddings, festivals, parties, vacations, and dinners because of his time management skills. And it kills me slowly every single time. All I had to do was read this article today in the Huffington Post to get anxious all over again about being late to things!

I know everyone is different and handles things differently. To each, his/her own, right? In most cases, I agree with this statement. I don’t want to ask someone to change something about themselves that is character-defining or is one of those core value items I discussed before. That would be ridiculous and just wrong.

But herein lies my problem: DO I GIVE IN OR FIGHT TILL I DIE ABOUT PUNCTUALITY??? His inability to move his arse into a similar gear that mine is in drives me crazy. Certifiably crazy. Should I just accept that this is how he is, and try to control the anger and rage that rise in my throat every time it happens? Or do I insist that he try to practice time management skills like alarm-setting, to do lists, reminders, itinerary planning, because it’s a necessary skill to have in life? Shouldn’t the mere fact that it drives his girlfriend insane be enough?

How do you compromise on something that you feel is important, with every bone in your body, but isn’t on the same list of priorities for your partner? I attempt to control my anxiety so that my reaction isn’t negative and strong. But in order for me to feel like it’s a true compromise, shouldn’t he also have to rise to the occasion?

Is this a typical male vs. female argument? That women are better planners and men just need to be told where and what to do in order to keep a relationship afloat? I for one refuse to buy into that gender norms crap. I think everyone has the ability to control their emotions (like how I try to) and improve their skills (like I think Timmy should). But it can’t happen without practice.

Before you think that I’m an exploding crazyass girlfriend, I will share with you that I know for a fact there are things I do that drive Timmy crazyface, and I have maybe not attempted to fix because I don’t see what the big deal is. Or maybe I like that thing about me that he can’t stand. Do either of our complaints or seeming apathy make us bad people not meant to be in a relationship with each other? Absolutely not. It makes us two different people trying to make a relationship work.

Either way, we’re not perfect beings without flaws. We will drive each other nuts sometimes, and that’s life.

compromiseIf we can all agree that it sucks sometimes to compromise, I think we’ll be ok. It works out in the end, and you just keep practicing and trying and working at it. I keep practicing at controlling myself, taking a breath, reminding myself that it’s not the end of the world if things don’t always go my way. It’s a part of being in a relationship, any kind of relationship, that oh-so-fun game of give and take.

But give me my watch, cause seriously, that shit drives me crazy.

♥, VB

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Life Lately (According to my iPhone)

What have we been doing lately? Do you really even need to ask anymore? I’ll give you one guess.

Here’s what my iPhone says we’ve been doing the last month or so. Enjoy!

Austin and Reina’s wedding. You can see a few pictures from the “60 Minutes” video the groomsmen created for Austin, a.k.a. Mr. Monogamy. It was hysterical. And take note of the paper cranes. Reina did them ALL BY HAND. Giiiirrrrrrrllll, that’s patience. Notice that we also take many dumb photos together while at weddings.

Trips back home to Atlanta always include a visit to one of our many favorite restaurants. While in town for Austin and Reina’s wedding, we stuffed our faces at Flip Burger Boutique. Go there. Just do it. Just don’t add the donut vodka to the Krispy Kreme Milkshake. Blech. (And yes, that does say Krispy Kreme milkshake. I told you to go there.) I also wore really cute shoes, introduced Austin to obesity in Orlando, saw some weird sky things happening, and saw what nice businesses do for people who can’t work.

Another wedding two weekends ago, this time Gino and Jessica, two of our closest friends. Jessica and I are life twins, which means that everything that has ever happened to one of us has absolutely happened to the other. It’s hysterical and creepy all at the same time. You’ll remember that this is also the amazing lady whose bachelorette party pictures I can never share with the outside world. Naughty. It was such a freaking fun night, and it’s always a blessing to see people who love each other make it official in front of people who love them. Congrats you guys, we love you.

This past week I burned my forehead and my nose (AGAIN) because it was Fall Wellness Week at USFSP. Everyday we held events outside to encourage students to seek out health and wellness resources, make healthy decisions, and raise awareness for Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Thursday’s Clothesline Project was an extremely powerful and emotional event where we displayed shirts created by survivors and families of victims of abuse, sexual assault, rape, and incest. Each shirt had a personal message to display on a large scale a very silent epidemic.

Oh yeah, and I also cut the shit out of my hair. Time to welcome back the old Victoria, short hair and all. I made it to my goal of growing my hair out until it longer did anything except lie on my head like soggy paper towels. 8.5 inches later, I’m a new/return-to-the-old woman!

Thanks for stopping by. As you’ve probably guessed, we have another wedding this upcoming weekend, followed by another wedding next weekend. Lord be with me and my credit cards.

♥, VB

30 Times Over A Success

This is the big post you’ve all been waiting for. (Right? I can only hope you’ve been waiting for my blog posts since I’m so amazing at keeping y’all entertained…right?) This is the post that wraps up our crazy awesome birthday party/fundraiser, “30 Years, 1 Wish”.

I took the password protection off of the page, so now you can visit and re-visit all the amazing details, like the hotel we scored an amazing deal for guests that many of y’all didn’t take advantage of, although you should’ve cause it was incredible. Or the Über deal for new users that gave guests a sick deal on luxury car service to and from the brewery so you could drink as much as you wanted that night and not worry about getting home (or to another bar). Or the UNBELIEVABLE raffle items that were all donated to this event, totaling over $3400 worth of prizes to lucky winners who purchased raffle tickets at the party. Go on over to the page, and take a look. I can wait.

The party was unreal, y’all, we seriously can’t believe how successful the entire night was. Although we only got to spend, on average, around 3 minutes catching up per guest, it was such a whirlwind of fun and incredible memories that we will never ever forget that night. Our friends, family, and loved ones showed up in DROVES (around 200 of y’all!!) to support our causes and support us. It meant more to us than words will ever be able to express to see such steadfast, loyal friends who flew and drove to Atlanta just for our event. Who paid babysitters, and dressed up, and made a night of it just to support this idea. Honestly, even if y’all just needed a night out to drink beer, we’re so thankful you chose to come to our event to do just that!

We did miss some people who had RSVP-ed that they were indeed coming and didn’t show; we never got any explanation where those people ended up, if they were even in Atlanta at all. To them we say: thank you if you donated online, it really means a lot even if you weren’t able to show up. Things pop up, that’s understandable, and we’re just thankful you wanted to support our fundraising efforts.

WARNING → RANT FOLLOWING: To the rest that were no shows, no donators: um, what happened to you? I think some of y’all needed to be there to receive the message we spoke about during our speeches: “It isn’t all about you.” Other things are important, not just your important stuff, and we all need to remember to put life in perspective. People are hurting out there, people are dealing with greater misfortune than any of us will ever know. They deserve and need help from those who have more.

If anyone needed to hear that message, it’s the people who blew us off, didn’t respond to emails or phone calls or texts, who thought that even though the mailed invitation was a beautiful invitation that obviously showed that this was a legitimate event, who cares because you have more important things to do than RSVP or even show up, like focus on your life and your life only. And donate? Who has time to donate $25? You clearly had more important things to use that money for, so go ahead boo, and do you.

But I’m not bitter or anything.

RANT OVER. For those that did show up and/or donate, holy shit, you guys rocked. You bought tons and tons of raffle tickets, you donated so much money to the event, in person and online, and heard the message we wanted everyone to leave with. We got tons of messages after the event from people who felt what we had to say deep within, and it spurred them to start doing for others and reaching out to help where help is needed. We reconnected old friends with Jake, many of whom hadn’t seen him in years, and the entire Lyons family had a blast. It was an emotional night for sure, but emotionally positive and uplifting I hope.

Now, for the part of this post you’ve been waiting for: how much did “30 Years, 1 Wish” raise?  Our goal was to raise at least $3000, so that each organization received $1000 each (each organization being: the Women’s Resource Center to End Domestic Violence (in Atlanta), the American Indian College Fund, and the Colon Cancer Alliance). We would like to give thanks to the Women’s Resource Center for acting as the fiscal agent so that all guests were able to receive tax-deductible donation benefits and also for distributing the funds to the other two organizations.

Well folks, here it is. In the end, we raised… Continue reading