Jan 07 2011
Have you ever had a moment that freezes your very soul in sheer mortification? Of course you have. We’ve all been through Jr. High at this point.
I had one of those very moments during the interview portion of our home study.
One thing I value the most about K’s and my relationship is our very different reactions to a situation. Together, we play a constant game of tug-of-war and manage (most of the time) to balance within the bounds of sanity. The agency interview was no different. I felt more like a spooked cat on ice. Kevin, on the other hand, was as cool as a rapper. He was annoyingly collected.
We went into one of the private meeting rooms at the agency with our caseworker and an intern, made introductions, set down our coffees, and began. Of course, there was the classic opening question of “how would you describe yourself?” That segued into a line of questioning that you’d expect.
Things were progressing beautifully, and I was finally starting to feel a bit more comfortable. That’s when it happened.
“How do you handle stress in your home?”
K, without missing a beat, deadpanned, “Alcohol.”
Their faces morphed into at least 20 micro expressions as they internally replayed and digested the answers. My face mirrored that of someone receiving a surprise enema. I know. I’m so full of grace and poise, I could be a freakin’ beauty queen. Try not to be jealous.
After what seemed to be an eternity, K cracked a smile, started to laugh, and told them he was just kidding– humor was his coping mechanism. Their expressions relaxed as this new revelation took root, and they laughed, half relieved and half amused.
It has taken me several months to be able to laugh about this. Heretofore, the only thing I’ve felt is mortification, but as time starts to knead in a bit of perspective, I realize that this was a perfect example of our relationship dynamic and that those few awkward seconds added a window into both of our personalities that no amount of self reflection can reveal.
I firmly believe that we make our own destiny. However, I also believe, just as fervently, that things will always work out for the best, even if means aren’t ideal. Good things are born of everything, and just as in our case, our quirks play a big role in defining who we are.
**EDIT** For the record, he was joking!