Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Bricks or Walls

I am almost certain my husband's head is going to explode if he has to listen to me analyze any more of our problems while I try to find solutions. I can hear him roll his eyes at me while I pick every aspect of every barrier apart.
I don't know if this is true for men vs. women. If it's a phenomenon that occurs when a linear thinker has to compromise with a bottom line thinker. Maybe it's just the nature of how we have  made it through the last sixteen years together. I'm not sure, but I have learned a few things about problem solving from him.
For example, when I take on a writing project, I  see the great wall of china towering over me: Protagonist,Antagonist, helper, catalyst, setting, time period, problem to be overcome, romance?, backstory, conflict...
The list of my individual bricks goes on and on. I can't sit down at my computer and whip out more than about a thousand words pertaining to the first item on that list, Much less the details of the list itself.
My husband's comment to this is:
 "A thousand words sounds like the wall to me."
He can fix, build, renovate, roof, wire,figure out just about anything. If an engine has a cracked head he knows how to get it re-surfaced. If the washer won't shut, he knows how to get it to cooperate. To him those are bricks. To me those are walls
It seems to me that compromise is just a matter of perception. He thinks of bricks as problems he knows how to solve or that he can learn to overcome without too much effort.Wall demolished.
I think of bricks as things I can practice doing to learn how that will dismantle the wall.
My walls don't come tumbling down in a grand show of shattered bricks and clouds of dust. My walls are stacks of bricks  set off to the side and out of my way.
There are benefits to both. His way is a great show where we mere mortals ooh and aww when he's finished.
My way is a brief letting through of light that becomes first a window and eventually a door.
Not as showy or impressive as his, but cleaner.
As I try to wrap my brain around our differences and appreciate them for what they both contribute, I also recognize a larger truth.
Whether I'm moving bricks, or he's blasting walls. The light will come in. If my goal is the light of growth, knowledge, and experience, then why am I so worried about the condition of the wall?
Some day perhaps I will learn to use a wrecking ball. It's  a visual I I have a hard time focusing on because all I hear is the overwhelming noise.
Perhaps one day he'll want a door, or window, but it's more likely he'll spend time building them instead of moving bricks.
The secret is to know your self, and your obstacles. If your a blaster, blast away. Just remember not all walls hold you back. Some hold you together.
If you're a brick mover, just remember.Not all bricks can be moved aside. Sometimes moving those bricks creates a new wall.


  1. One person's bricks are another person's walls. To each, his own. This is a good post.

  2. He thinks I'm too stubborn too learn, but I'm trying to work the way I can while letting him do the same. Sometimes its just fun living in the demolition zone.