Every relationship has its ups and downs and I don’t just mean couples. it doesn’t take much for a relationship to go sour and there could be times when there are more downs than ups, but it is when the relationship flourishes through it all, that it becomes successful.
Having established that fact, let’s explore the connection between fighting, making up and food. Let’s start with my mother. We have had our share of fights, Oh Yes, we have. Most of them involved a lot of yelling, especially from my side, slamming of doors, crying and such. But I don’t think any of those fights were ever serious enough to carry as a grudge. I may remember some incidents more than others, but that’s just how my memory works. Our noisy, door slamming fights disappeared over the years, and today we are left with mild arguments that probably last only as long as a phone call. My dear husband keeps trying to provoke a fight between us, by complaining about me, but these days my mother does not react. She laughs it off, and my poor husband does not get the entertainment he hoped for.
Even though I may not accept it in front of her, I am pretty sure that most of our fights happened because I pissed her off tremendously and the right would have been on her side (my teenage brain just did not understand it). I suppose these fights are a common occurring, something that every mother-daughter pair goes through, while the poor father is caught in the middle of the fireworks, not knowing whose side to take. I surely don’t miss those fights, but I do miss slamming the door ;-). Is there a food connection here? Well, to be honest, my mother always cooked yummy food, so I can’t really pin point if she made something special, just to celebrate the end of a fight.
While I am on the topic, I have to mention Mr. P has with his mother. Their conversations have a pattern: they start out peacefully, then my mother-in-law, in all her excitement utters something that annoys Mr. P and that’s it, the conversation takes off in a different tangent. They argue, he screams, she tries to respond and he screams some more and finally one of them hangs up! What next? He feels bad for having screamed at her, mopes for a while, and calls back to apologize. Typical mother-son fight? I don’t know, but it is a definite source of entertainment for me.
From mothers to friends: a completely different type of conversation but the emotions that get ruffled are similar. I have friends who understand friendly banter and healthy arguments, but then I also have some other friends who have made it their hobby to pick a fight. Regardless of how my friends behave, they are still my friends. What’s life if one cannot forgive and forget, right? The best thing I have been able to do, and I am proud of it, is to apologize and move on if it was my fault, or keep no grudges if the fault was theirs. And I am sure there was some sort of a ‘treat’ involved, even if it were a plate of samosas from the college canteen.
I’ve talked about fights with my mom and friends, so what’s left? The ones that happen right here at home. Rewinding to the first few years of our marriage, Mr. P and I used to have the nastiest of fights. Again there was a lot of yelling involved, followed by waterworks (mine of course), and then deafening silence that lasted for a few hours, sometimes even overnight. Over the years, as we matured (not to be read as ‘grown older’), our fights have mellowed down, knock on wood. Here’s our favorite strategy, which you are welcome to adopt: as soon as you see the argument starting to spiral out of control, SHUT UP! Keeping quiet and staying out of each other’s space for even as little as 30 mins makes a world of difference. Trust me, it works. Our policy also has this clause, we don’t go to bed fighting. However big the problem, it has to be resolved before going to sleep, mainly because it is important to sleep with a peaceful mind.
The aftermath of a fight with my husband is quite fun… For instance, a few weeks ago, we made tall claims about working out together to try and lose a few pounds by the end of the year. Then we had a relatively big row, implemented our technique, and made up. What did we do next? It was evening, so I made him his favorite onion pakoras to go with coffee, and later on, he bought me a Hershey’s chocolate bar (which we shared, of course). The fact that I could be bought over with a bar of chocolate is… well, it is the fact and if there’s anyone out there who wants to make amends with me, you know what to do. Anyway, we fought, we made up and we ate… but amidst all the hullabaloo, we forgot something important…our weight loss goal. There’s always a Monday to start working on that, right?
I don’t know what connection food has with fights, or if I am only one who has had these experiences. But I have noticed that we, especially Mr P and I, have resorted to something delicious after most of our major fights. I guess it is probably because food is a panacea, a one-stop remedy for every angry mind and sad soul. What are your thoughts on this strange but delicious connection?
We fight, we make up, and then we fight again…that’s love, that’s life. As we prepare for Diwali, the festival of lights, here’s wishing you all a day filled with sweet memories. And if you happen to get into a tiff, try and keep the fireworks to a minimum (remember to shut up). Give your opponent some time, and I am sure that soon enough you both will be making up over a plateful of Diwali goodies. Happy Diwali, everyone.