I thought it would be a few years before having my weekends snatched from me without ever making it beyond the planning stage became a thing, yet here I am. These are the stages of emotions I experienced when my girlfriend informed me late Wednesday night that her parents would be here on Friday so we could all ride to her cousin’s baby shower in Houston together.
This is obvious. You plan something, allow yourself to indulge in a little fantasizing about how perfect it will be, and then someone else comes along and takes it from you before you ever have the chance to see these plans manifest. The worst part? They’re not equaling or improving your plans, they’re just replacing them, without any consideration for how heavily you’ve been leaning on the thought of your well-crafted weekend to get you through the past week.
When I found out the two days I’d put together were crushed because of the baby shower of someone I hadn’t seen in a year, and that my weekend of solitude was to be replaced with a weekend of being the slightly outside the family family member, I couldn’t see straight for a few minutes. I could only stammer out incomprehensible profanities while my girlfriend tried to console me with inaudible compromises and soothes.
Confusion is pretty simultaneous with anger. First you’re mad, then you start to question what led you here. What sort of karmic retribution are you being served. How much of a bastard were you in your previous life to deserve this? Is this payback for that one (okay, six) times you showed up an hour late to go to dinner? Why couldn’t these plans have fallen on that Saturday you went in and pulled a full 8 hour shift? None of what is happening makes sense, and you’re in no mental state to try to understand anything except that this sucks, a lot.
It’s late Thursday afternoon. You’re losing the ability to keep convincing yourself this isn’t real, this is just a nightmare and you won’t be spending your Saturday driving out of town to an antique bazaar. Desperation is beginning to set in and you’re looking for some way out. So you start negotiating.
First is the list of every possible excuse and deal you can come up with. But they’re not working. You’re not cunning enough to craft a believable lie and any deal you try to make falls flat because you’ve already proven yourself incapable of fulfilling commitment. Now you’re bargaining with yourself. You’re sitting there at work valuing your sacrifice against all those other things you’ve been too afraid to ask for before now. Or, “We’ve been dating for three years, no way she dumps me if I just flat say no.”
With all your plea deals having been rejected, it’s time to face it. You’ve been dating three years, after all. This isn’t the first time this has happened, and it won’t be the last. It’s noon on Friday and you’ve already said goodbye to all the debauchery you were going to engage. The fight to get out of it is more time and energy than you’re willing to spend, and growing up means making sacrifices. Including your weekends. You don’t want to do it, but there’s probably a lot of shit she does that she doesn’t want to either, like put up with you. T-minus 24 hours, time to bite the bullet.
With the big day here, your fundamental laziness has won and you’ve given up the fight because it takes a lot more energy to be mad than it does to just give in. It could always be worse. At least you’re still not at work. This might not be so bad. Something could happen, some freak weather or something to derail the entire day and confine everyone to the house. There might be alcohol wherever you’re going (there won’t be).
Sure, this isn’t what you wanted to do, but it’s not as bad as it originally sounded now that you’ve had a couple days to cool off and get back to your generally unemotional self. It’s not like you really needed to be doing all that anyway. Think of all the money you’ll save not having a weekend of fun. Your team was out of the CFB playoff picture three weeks ago, watching the game was going to just be an obligation. It’s fine, this is fine.
I’m somewhere between acceptance and optimism. Having been a little more informed of the weekend’s itinerary it’s definitely not as bleak as it originally sounded, but I’m still a little worried at the amount of human interaction that awaits me. Will it be as fun as the plans I had? I doubt it. But there’s only one way to find out, and I’m glad I have a girlfriend that’ll suffer right beside me. .