"Change, when it comes, cracks everything open."
Dorothy Allen

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Later vs Now

For the last couple of days, I have been noticing a big difference between the way that I and my husband think.   It is glaring and now that I have noticed it, I can't NOT notice it.

He is a "later" person.   I am a "now" person.
He will smile.

 When I want to do something, or make a decision, I want to start.  Now.  Right now.  I don't want to waste another second, I want to get my hands dirty, I want to get it done.  If I decide that I want to go somewhere, I want to go today.  If I am going to go out for dinner, then I want to do it that night. 

I know that it isn't always feasible to be a now person.  There are challenges- money, previous plans, other people's schedules, and just the simple logistics of starting and finishing projects.  But I love the rush, the excitement that I feel when I get an idea or an urge and I am able to act on it right away. 

Geoff is a later person.  As in "someday, but not right now".  I will tell him that I want to do something, or go somewhere, and he will agree that it is a good idea.  When I ask him to pack it up and get ready to go,  he usually gets that confused look on his face, as he begins to understand that yes, I did mean today.  The excuses usually start.  Sometimes, he goes with it. 

It causes conflict in lots of different ways.  I will ask him to do something.  I mean now.  He does it later.  I get pissed.  He is confused (seeing a trend here?  Geoff doesn't put as much though into these things as I do.) 

So, how do I reconcile this?  How do I make this work?  We will be married for 15 years this year.  You would think that I had figured this out by now.  I am trying to be a bit more flexible in my expectations.  But I end up doing a lot of stuff myself.  I will ask him to make the kids breakfast.  When 20 minutes has passed and he still hasn't done it, I do it myself.  To tell the truth, if he doesn't jump in the first minute or so, I usually do it myself.  Maybe that makes it easier for him to continue to a "later" person.   Usually it makes it easier for me to continue to be a "now" person.  

I am trying to turn my kids into now people too.  Not only do I want them to jump and do what I want them to do, the minute I ask them to do it :), but I want them to live with this kind of excitement.  I want them to feel what it's like to have the flash of brilliance, and that flutter in your belly.  I want them to have the drive to start- not just start but finish! 

There is something I am struggling with.  Their "nows".  The "let's go to the park" and "let's paint!" and "let's play hopscotch".  When their "nows" conflict with mine.   I find myself saying no, not now, later.  I want them to be nows.  I am forcing them to be laters.   That makes me feel like a bad mom.  I need to find a way to fix this.  Now.  Not later.

Rosie N. Grey
The N stands for "now".


  1. I understand - my husband is a bit of a 'maybe later' kinda guy. I don't usually want to do things, but when I do, I want to do them right away. I HATE having to wait because of money or time. I would much rather just do what I want, when I want to.

    Life has to be about compromise, especially when it comes to loved ones who are different than yourself. Is there a way to nurture your husband's spontaneity while you practice patience?


    1. Hi Sunfire...LOL..it feels like my whole life is an exercise in practicing patience for me. But seriously, now that I am aware of it, I can see lots of opportunity to make good change happen.

  2. This is SO me and Sam. We fight about this ALL the time!

    1. Hey Laura...yeah, I am hearing that this is a big issue with lots of people. Nice to know I am not alone! :)