The First Day Of The Rest Of My Life
Today I helped someone with the vocabulary to express their true self.
They gave me the opportunity to help them in that quest.
It has been painful … very painful.
She is what I have regarded as my soul mate, love of my life, someone I would take the bullet for, my deepest friend and lover, my wife, mother of my children, dumpstress when I’m angry and sad, someone who has given (sacrificed apparently) twenty some years in support of me and our family which we have built up together. She is the person I fantasise about in my most personal moments. She has helped me become human, grow, learn about myself, encouraged me to love myself and humanity. My teacher, my guide: she has given me my kindness, enhanced my humour and opened up the world to my eyes. She is magnificent and I am deeply, deeply in love though I’m not giving her the love she wants and I just don’t understand.
Good times, bad times… yes all of that, only what would be expected in any marriage.
Considerations? Well I thought we were doing better than failure – I thought we had something magical and special and would make it past the post like both our parents did, regardless of the difficulties they encountered.
OK things haven’t been great in the past few years: money problems, work stress, personal and family illness etc. But I truly thought that that was only just par for the course, you know “better and worse, sickness and health, richer and poorer”. This was all flagged up and predicted when we chose to get married, but it seems that she has had enough and has decided she cannot cope with our relationship any more.
It’s a learning experience and I have to deal with it.
I have to comply or prolong the gut wrenching agony of … I don’t really want to list the feelings and events because it sounds so self immersive, critical and … well … painfully gut wrenching!
I understand, now, that she didn’t really mean to cause me so much pain and hurt and it was really exacerbated by my own expectations and hopes. Indeed, dreams and wishes that everything would turn out OK when we managed to work together to pull our work lives in alignment with our goals.
Ah! There’s the rub: goals. They’re just different. There is no alignment in our goals it seems.
Oh .. I just … well … I’ve had such a painful day I don’t think I can carry on with this tonight.
It all started by me trying to understand her more – get closer – help her feel loved and wanted for who she is rather than who I wanted her to be – well matey: IT’S TOO LATE.
“We’re not the same people we used to be. Not better or worse – just different. I don’t want to be with you any more. I want to be by myself.”
We’ve covered a lot of ground with each other today.
Said things that few have been honest with each other to say – brutally and kindly honest – painfully honest – exactly how it is – exactly how it was.
Yes, I helped her with the vocabulary and in doing so stopped her from carrying on with her painful deceit. We talked about sex, drugs and lack of rock and roll. We talked about lying to ourselves, keeping up a pretence and protecting our children from gossip. She said it hurt her just as much when she saw she was hurting me but I find it hard to believe she could have felt the same way.
I understand she also felt pain with the way I have behaved over the years but is wasn’t as excruciatingly knife stabingley painful as it has been for me in recent times. Waiting, just waiting for her to be with me and allow me to express my love for her; my acceptance; my forgiveness, my … oh I just feel I can’t go on or be without her … those long long nights of waiting, hoping, imagining, fearing, scared for her well-being and scared for our future together… endless nights.
I blubbered and blubbered like a child, quite a few times today – snot everywhere (not pretty and less than attractive). Uncontrollable sadness reaching the surface. Feelings of failure, loss of masculinity, impotence, unrequited love … She has been strong and showed resolve. I feel her calm coldness and sympathy … but her love has gone. It is only one way now and I am feeling so desperately, desperately hurt… and I blubber again.
She moved to touch me on my shoulder and though I would have given the earth for any such menial expression of affection recently I just couldn’t take it and pulled myself away. Not out of spite but as a way to try and reduce my continuing hurt – I know I need to learn this lesson and tough love, if that’s what it is, has to occur. She isn’t willing to help me feel better by showing any affection she feels isn’t being true to herself and in the long run it would prolong the pain.
When I think of the past it feels pointless and painful but when I think of where we will go from here I regain some strength.
No matter how painful the next few months will be I have chosen to support her in her decision to be by herself. The journey of showing acceptance of the situation, being ‘Above The Line’, ‘Playing Black: Win/Win’, letting her go. Maybe even letting myself go, I suppose.
My business is in terminal collapse though I may have a chance to operate a smaller version of it direct from home (this is not a certainty), which may allow me to actually attend to long overdue matters in our home to make it saleable at a reasonable price when the market stabilises.
In the meantime we should be able to save some money for her to go and do her ‘by myself’ thing. She will go away and I will be a single parent for a while. And after that? Well we will probably meet again to divide the spoils. Periodically we will contact and each time will be excruciating. As time goes by the pain will stay but the acuteness will be dulled. Eventually I may stop feeling sorry for myself and get on with the remainder of my self pitiful life.
As they say, we are already, even after just a short time from our honest realisation, getting on better than we have for a while. The pretence has gone and the expectations released. Freedom!
I am finding it hard to tear myself away from my wishes and believe is a small way that this is just a phase and our relationship is strong enough to cope but I cannot have anything as a precondition and any future reconciliation is most unlikely and is genuinely NOT an expectation. She just doesn’t like me any more. Get this, to let me down gently, she said, “I just don’t think I can give you the love you deserve.”
I’m struggling folks. … this loss of love: it’s not the first time something like this has happened in the world, but it the first time for me and I don’t give a toot for all those blues singers, what do they know?
Self pity – self loathing are so close and totally pointless and energy sucking, so easy to slip in to.
THIS IS MY CHALLENGE: to rise above my negative, destructive, sarcastic and returningly hurtful reactions and channel my energies into my positive learning experience which will help us both grow and enable our selfs the happiness and love we deserve: so easy to type, so hard to put in practise.
I will need regular reminding that I promised to be supporting … like now … I don’t know if this is a good idea. I don’t think I’m doing very well already I keep wandering into my defensive sarcasm mode.
Don’t be fooled. I am not the good guy and she the bad guy, I know this, but she seems to be OK about this phase of our relationship and I am struggling with facing up to reality – but then again, what’s new?
Now is a good time to be honest: there is a desire in both of us for acknowledgement, approval, and justification but I’m sure this is just natural and much of our short chat included mutual appreciation, for the first time in many a moon. She has however, made it quite clear that she cannot give me any more reassurance and is not willing to continue with what she believes to be the cause of her unhappiness. She is quite definite in this and expressed it in no uncertain terms.
See what you can do with a bit of vocabulary! I blame the counsellors – we may have still been ignorantly unhappy otherwise and contentment may have righted itself in time.
Learning process? Well, I wish it were different and don’t want to learn this lesson. No, I don’t want this lesson but as she says, “Divine Law. I don’t understand it, but you seem to get what you need – not necessarily what you want.”
I hope to show more of how I actually am in future.
I have a good sense of humour, a quick wittedness and an ability to laugh at myself and others. I love my family, care deeply about people who struggle with life stuff and come with a Motto for Life: Love, Fun and Service though I appreciate that fewpeople reading this far will actually believe it.
The bitter irony is that it is my own parent’s 48th wedding anniversary today.
Time will tell.