Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Yikes, what a weekend

I guess I should make some things clear, so that those reading this who actually know me don't get the wrong idea. 

I hesitated even using the word "divorce" in my post just previous.  It is such a powerful word, and I do not throw it around lightly.  Every marriage has problems, and we all know that.  And I am fairly certain that every married person, at one point or another, daydreams fondly of what life would be like were they free of the responsibilities and demands of marriage/parenting.  Co-habitating with another human is one of the most challenging things to do - so challenging, in fact, that I wonder how so many of us manage to do it.  I mean, do we all really want another human in our space all day, every day, with their quirks and noises and irritating habits?  It is very hard, let me tell you.  The capacity of "love", whether romantic or Christian, to withstand all things and forgive all things is truly tested when two people live together.  At this point, for B and me, some things definitely do need to change on my part, going forward.  Because, if they don't, I'm not sure what will happen.  Or rather, I do know what might happen, and I shudder to think of what that would do to K and S.

This weekend was certainly not the first time my husband and I have gotten into extremely hostile conversations.  We have been under an increased amount of stress since we became parents at all, let alone parents of a special-needs child.  B and I have definitely had problems.  Maybe they started soon after we married...probably so, since in some aspects the problems have their basis in my personality, and I was obviously there from the start!  You see, I don't remember having those romantic, sentimental, warm-fuzzy thoughts about being married, or even having daydreams about "having someone to love".  If you go by the commercials on t.v., young people getting married are supposedly having constant daydreams about their future life with their spouse.  You know, the little home they'll have together, the little family they'll start, how wonderful it will be to do everything together.  I honestly do not remember having those daydreams.  Other than the basic, obvious details of moving in together, opening a joint checking account, that kind of thing - other than that, I didn't really, truly consider what being married really meant. 

It means sharing, folks.  Lots and lots and lots of sharing.  You share your love, your space, your bed, your money, your time, your habits, your food choices, your decorating tendencies....it's all gotta be mutual, and inevitably, one of the newly married young people is going to have to compromise (read: "give in").  And I definitely did not grow up with parents who shared, were affectionate, compromised...or even, by the time I came along, exhibited any ability to be civil to each other.  My mother had put her walls up years before, and by golly she was not going to leave herself vulnerable in any way, which meant that she had pretty much shut my father out of her life.  So that was my example, as far as married relationships went.  So the whole idea of being vulnerable to another person, for the sake of love, that's just not part of my psyche.  And not only am I suffering and struggling because of it, I am hurting my own little family as well...this weekend provided vivid proof of that, unfortunately.  I'm pretty sure K is convinced that her parents will be parting ways soon. 

The only thing, or rather one of the bigger things, that will keep that from happening is if I somehow work on my trust issues, and hopefully in the process, somehow come to believe I am worthy of love....I guess?  I'm just foraging around, at this point, trying to figure out what to do, trying to salvage something out of the mess I have made.  I'm not saying B is perfect, and it takes both spouses to make or break a marriage, so I refuse to lay all of our problems at my feet.  But, wow, this weekend was really awful.  I am very nervous; going forward from here, if I am to really listen and remember and pay attention to some of the things B said this weekend, I will need to make some changes.  I do a lot of thinking about myself, MY needs, how life has done ME wrong, what I want to do, why life hasn't been fair to ME.  And yet, I have so, so much to be thankful for, you know?  I mean, I am able to sit right here, with my mug of coffee, in a quiet and peaceful house, and write - and how much of a blessing is that?  It doesn't change the fact that there is laundry to do and I will be doing it - again; or that there are piles of paperwork to do and I will be taking care of that - again.  I don't know.  Life is such a mixed bag.  I have a good life.  Should I just be thankful for it, and move on?

So bewildered and mentally tired,
J.

1 comment:

An said...

I know about that 'foraging' feeling: foraging around for an answer, a diagnosis of sorts, along with a prognosis. We want very very much to know what to do, how to interpret what is going on. We want to know for sure what part of the circumstances is our own, and what belongs to our partner. What is 'my' baggage, and what is his? What's more, we want to know how to stop ourselves when we slip into the negative, the blindly pissed-off and resentful self that can't remember the times when there was equity, even if only for a few moments, when there was genuine cheer and compassion in our relationships with our partner. I know I want to know all this. I want to be able to see myself sliding down that slope into bitterness and stop myself from the slide. I DO NOT want a repeat of my parents' marriage, but there are times when J will point something out about my attitude, or I'll notice something myself, and I just plain shudder. It's frightening. Marriage is certainly about sharing - I've found myself territorially defending my space, my time, even from the kids and J. That defense has come with a cost - guilt on my part, because I know I'm not being terribly loving at times. The guilt just weighs me down. There is balance though, and there is most certainly HOPE. There are times when I just open the 'door' a crack, and suspend distrust and anxiety, and allow the kids in, and allow J in, and it is very good.