Chuck Lorre got it right

If you’ve ever watched “Young Sheldon,” “The Big Bang Theory,” Two and a Half Men,” “Mom” or “Dharma & Greg,” you probably know the name Chuck Lorre and may have even hit “pause” to read the vanity cards that appear at the end of many of his shows.

Or maybe you haven’t and I’m the only word geek who enjoys them. (Either way, you should check them out sometime.)

I have no idea how many of these he has written, but card #588 reads:

“I don’t know what my expectations are until they’re not met.”

I should have that stenciled on the wall of my office, kitchen, bedroom and bathroom mirror, because it’s so.darned.true!

I mean, think about it.

When we were kids, we didn’t really think about what we expected from our teachers until we got in trouble for talking during class or chewing gum or not doing homework or received a failing grade.

When we were teenagers, we may have daydreamed about getting asked out by that cute guy or girl, but we didn’t really know what a “bad date” looked like until we experienced one.

Then there’s marriage where you probably have a general expectation that you found your soul mate, but you don’t really know what that looks like—until you trip over dirty underwear on the floor or have to wipe toothpaste, shaving cream or makeup out of the sink every freaking day.


Eventually, if you’re lucky, you become a grandparent and aside from expecting that the child is healthy, you probably don’t have expectations of him/her.

Until you realize you expected a certain hair or eye color.

As they grow, maybe you expect they’ll reach milestones on time.

And maybe you secretly hope “Nana” will be their first word. (And maybe this is because every time you are with them you sing a song that has the phrase “na-na-na-na-na” in it!)

My point is, we don’t always know what we expect until life throws us a curve or disappoints us when we weren’t even consciously thinking about what we expected in the first place.

And expectations are hard to change, despite our best intentions.

I’ve told my husband (Fun Fact: he’s husband #2) that I’ve dropped my expectations of a partner and set the bar super low for him so he should be able to easily able to get along with me. (Insert his loud guffaw here.)

I find at least once a week either in my work life or personal life, Chuck Lorre hit the nail on the head and I discover expectations that are unmet.

But you know what? This rarely happens in my world with the grandkids!

Oh, I may hand a kid a sippy cup and expect her to NOT shake it upside down until water has leaked everywhere so that when I release her from her car seat prison, that her pants aren’t dripping wet.

Or I may send a 3-year-old and a 5-year-old outside to play and expect they won’t both come in covered in grass stains and sobbing.


What’s funny to me is the difference in my reaction to unmet expectations in grandkids versus other relationships—even my own child. If my expectations had gone unmet in my child, I’d have been incredibly disappointed and tried to figure out where I went wrong or, depending on the age and infraction, I may have gotten angry and said something unkind.

When my expectations of my husband go unmet, I find myself muttering under my breath or calling a friend to vent.

Grandchildren are different. Those sneaky unmet expectations don’t really seem to annoy me at all! In fact, sometimes I even find them amusing (the kid was literally dripping wet when I lifted her out of her car seat. Seriously, how much water do sippy cups hold?!).

I hope your expectations are always met, but when they’re not, I hope you can find some pleasure in those little moments that didn’t turn out as you didn’t realize you had planned!

And thanks, Chuck Lorre, for that deep thought!

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