Yesterday the tears flowed. Because of a sandwich. Seriously you guys…I bawled after the order I made at a sandwich shop turned out totally differently than I expected. In general, my personality is pretty go-with-the-flow and most things just make me laugh. And I rarely get upset over simple mistakes. They literally don’t bother me a bit because often a mistake is just a mistake and no one meant for it to happen. So, no use spending my emotions on that. However, yesterday was different.
I placed my order and when I went to pick it up after paying, I saw two REGULAR sandwiches sitting there. Like sandwiches I make any day in my own kitchen. Not sandwiches I pay for. I hate paying for sandwiches, actually. Going somewhere to pay for either soup or a sandwich is beyond my understanding. That is a meal I make at home when I can’t think of anything else or don’t want to make an effort. Actually, that is probably more like a plate of microwave nachos or a scoop of cottage cheese, let’s be honest. However, the point is, I can’t understand paying for a soup and sandwich (this probably made the whole thing that more maddening).
My husband, on the other hand, loves a good sub sandwich. So, yesterday I suggested bringing home a sub sandwich for us and he happily agreed. But as I stared at those stupidly simple sandwiches on REGULAR bread, I felt myself on the verge of tears. I didn’t even trust myself enough not to cry if I asked the kid who took my order where I had gone wrong. I just got in my car. And then I called my husband and that is when the flood gate opened. It was a two minute conversation. Mostly because he literally couldn’t understand me due to how hard I was crying. I think he was scared, too. I mean, his wife had just called crying hysterically about a sandwich. And she was coming home. He was going to have to deal with this live and in person. He just kept mumbling he couldn’t understand me very well but he was sure it would be delicious and just fine. This is what any kind husband should do in this situation. Always just say it will be fine.
Anyways, I had a 20 minute drive ahead of me and I obviously had to ask myself why a sandwich had upset me this much. Did I mention I’m five months pregnant? With my fourth child. I’m already on the brink of an emotional breakdown from that alone. Raging hormones, constant discomfort, lack of sleep, endless cooking and snacks and cleaning…you know the drill. However, I knew this is not what was causing my sandwich melt down. After relocating back to the US with no plans of returning overseas as we had been doing for the last seven years, I am having a hard time with all the unknown. The relearning.
The starting over…again.
You would think it would be easy since I’m doing all this in my own culture. But friends, life changes and things change, even in your own, once familiar, world. And it’s a little different every time we come back. Case in point: now there are chips in our debit cards. Do you even know how many times I have had to talk myself through using my debit card at check out in the last six weeks? I’ll give you a hint: every. single. time. Yeah-I’m the crazy lady reminding herself out loud that her debit card has a chip and she needs to insert it instead of swipe it. Except at Costco (until Jan 2017 or something. Not looking forward to that.). One more reason I love Costco. I’m not exaggerating. Ask my husband. I heart it. And on top of chip filled debit cards, evidently one can now get a sub sandwich on regular bread where you once only got it on fresh, soft, squishy, sub sandwich bread.
But here is the struggle: I just want to know what to expect in life right now.
I’ve been learning languages and cultures for the last seven years. It’s not even that as much as I’ve been having babies and trying to raise my kids and build the foundation of our young family amidst those things. And now I just long for something to be familiar. To not experience surprises in the places I’m not expecting them.
But ya know what I’m learning? I probably have a long road of resettling ahead of me and the most important thing I can do for myself along this journey is to let myself cry. Over sandwiches. Over whatever it is that jumps up and reminds me of this transition I’m going through. And when the tears flow over something as silly as sandwiches, I just have to let them come. Let the emotions out.
I don’t know what you’re going through. A life change you didn’t see coming. One that was expected but your reaction to it is surprising you. Whatever it is, go ahead and feel it. Even if it makes you cry over a sandwich. That’s just your heart and mind showing you that you need to take a moment to acknowledge how big this thing is. That you are overwhelmed. That you need to cry. Or run. Or paint. Or talk. It’s ok to feel these things and do whatever it is that lets you get through the emotion. Don’t block it out or tell yourself you are ridiculous for crying about the sandwich. Embrace it. Let it nudge you further down the road you are journeying.
You aren’t alone. I’ll probably be crying about a muffin tomorrow.