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Thursday, July 28, 2011

Truth may set you free, but it can be very painful...

It is said that "the truth will set you free", and even though it took me a long time to really accept the truth, and I knew immediately that I had to speak the truth even if it seemed abrupt and "out of the blue", I knew that living with the truth unspoken once realized would be wrong.  But free or not, truth sometimes makes life a lot more painful and a LOT more stressful for a while--I suppose its the adjustment period after have a profound deep realization of a truth. I can't live a lie and I will not give false hope to anyone when I know the truth, so that they too can move forward.
You may be wondering what I am talking about...well in my earlier post form earlier this week I spoke of the realization that I had that I am no longer in love with my separated spouse.  We have been separated for almost 15 months now, but I left for a multitude of reasons, and not being "in love" was not one of them.  Throughout this whole ordeal (beginning in 2008, about 20 months before I left) I have felt a lot of emotions that have gotten in the way of that "in love" emotive suite, but always knew that deep down underneath--below the pain and anger, the resentment and powerlessness, the worry and incredulity--that there was still that spark, still the yearning to be together, to rekindle the flame of love, to be in a spousal relationship, to know that after all that we have gone through both together and apart, that there is still that connection that drew us together into a relationship deeper and more profound than friendship.  Even as I spent time saying there was no chance we could get back together, I could never bring myself to say with certainty that there was no chance, because I believed that underneath my anger and pain, that the spark was still there. 

A few months ago it had gotten back to me that someone had said I was leading A along with false hope (even though I had explicitly said I did NOT want to get back together).  A part of me still held out a little bit of hope that things would come full circle and we could rebuild (or rather build anew) our full family structure together.  As I was not sure how long that would take, we really have been focusing on building a solid, secure friendship in which we bring mutual respect and care to that table as we co-parent our children while not together.  IT has been a good experience.  We have been able to enjoy each other's company, spend time together as a family, and have good conversation.  We really have been successful in building a friendship.  And A has the freedom to drink, spend money, make decisions, and do whatever without me interfering.  AND I have the freedom to NOT stress about A's drinking (which has been in moderation lately--a new and exciting step for A--which I can celebrate rather than get angry at), and to make my own choices, and live my own life too.  Things that have annoyed or bothered me, I can just ignore and let go.  I am not living with A, I am not "with" A, and so choices that I would not want for MY life, can just be let go because A's life is not my life.  This has greatly reduced tension between us.  I know what I can and cannot live with and A knows what A can and cannot live with.  And living separately, we don't end up forcing the other person to live in a situation that is unsafe or unacceptable for them.  I don't nag A and try to control A's life (though somehow I am still doing all the laundry (A's included) and making sure the car insurance is up to date even though my name is no longer on it).  And A can drink and do whatever A wants without worrying about someone harping on it.  There is obviously a lot more than that, but why go into it all.  Suffice to say, it is better to be friends with A and live our separate lives, than to be together and both be miserable and feel unsafe and disrespected in our daily lives. 

But over the past few weeks, I have really been looking at what it would be like to try to get back together with A.  A part of me hates the idea of our family being separated forever.  I WANT that old feeling of being excited that A is coming home.  I WANT that feeling or wanting to be close and be a together family again.  I WANT to look at our wedding album and read the song my mom wrote for us or the plaque my friend Nykie made for us, and be able to say "we made it through that huge crater in the road".  I WANT to wake up and have my spouse sleeping next to me.  I WANT to have a home where we both are and the kids can just have one place to lay their heads (technically they do now as A comes to my house to see the kids, but that's another thing).  I WANT to be able to plan for the future as a family and be able to discuss all of those decisions that you have to make in life.  I WANT to have a partner to walk through life with, to share the big things and the little things, to support each other through both good and bad times.  I WANT the Charles and Caroline Ingalls kind of love, respect, and devotion.  I want the Cliff and Claire Huxtable kind of humor-filled, love-filled, respect filled home.  I want to be that family that through thick and thin, no matter what, that pulls together, works together, and has the love and respect for each other that keeps them together for 50 years.  I WANT to do the hard work that really making a marriage last takes. I WANT an equal partner that brings half of the strength, joy, and ideas, and carries half of the burden of building, and maintaining, the needs of the family, and of the relationship. I WANT to have that spark that never dies even in the most trying times.

I also WANT to win a million dollars.  I WANT to go back to school and finish my PhD someday.  I WANT to have a nice house in the country.  I WANT my children to be healthy and free of their special needs.  I WANT to have a bunch of chickens.  I WANT to have a thin and healthy body.  I WANT to have a mini-van.  I WANT to have a dog that does not bring home fleas.  I WANT to always have enough.  I WANT to live to be 97.  I WANT to have the US economy fixed overnight.  I WANT to a world without war.  I WANT a lot of different things--some of which I can take steps and actions towards making them real in my life, and some of which I have no real control over.  In order for a relationship to be what I envision, I need to have someone on the other end of the relationship sharing that vision and working towards it as I work towards it.  That is one of those things about relationship, both people have to be moving in relatively the same direction with relatively the same goal, and with comparable levels of motivation and determination.  Unlike some other goals, relationship is the only one that absolutely requires the other person to be on the same page.

The other night A and I tried to get share something we have not shared since before our separation.  I was up half the night after that with this sense that something was terribly wrong.  We had been getting along really well.  We had been talking about building this camping area t my Dad's together, we had been doing a lot of family things together, we had been talking about how not having to stress about certain issues that were difficult in the past was great, and we seemed to be moving forward in some ways.  Yes there were things there are obviously still not right, and there was no way that we are in a place that we would want to be together again as a couple yet, but things were calm and enjoyable between us.  We have both changed in a lot of ways, and are kind of relearning who we are for ourselves and who each other are (poor grammatical syntax, I know).  But after I spent a lot of time looking deeply at what I was feeling and thinking, that it finally dawned on me what was missing, what was wrong.  That spark that I figured was just buried under all the hurt and anger and resentment, that spark that is really necessary to provide the motivation to do the monumental amount of hard work to rebuild a broken and painful relationship, that spark that makes you want to do whatever it takes to find the path back...that spark for me was gone.   IT was not just buried, it was not just crushed under all the crap that we had piled on top of it, it was not just flickering and needing fuel, it was gone.  I was not "in love" with A.  I was not attracted to A.  The desire to work towards what I WANT was that I WANT the idea.  But an idea can not sustain you.  "OMG" I thought,"I really have been leading A on and giving false hope. "  I have been lying to myself, I don't know for how long, but at least for a while.  I have been telling myself that if I just worked hard enough to overcome my anger, my resentment, my pain at what has transpired, that we could make it work.  But I have no desire to be in a marriage that has not got that deep sense of love, of attraction, of one-ness.  And I have no intention of hiding my lack of feelings and letting A not move on to have the option of finding someone who is passionate about A. 

Do I love A?  Yes, of course.  A is the other parent of my children, and has been becoming a good friend.  I do have love in my heart for A, and hope that we can remain friends and remain able to continue to be good parents to our children.  But I don't want to be with A, I don't want to be A's spouse.  Through this whole thing, I have felt "I don't want to be with A right now"  and had a laundry list of reasons why (some very good that anyone would understand and some nit-picky that only I would understand).  But I always figured it was temporary.  I realized the other day.  That I don't want to be with A.  Not in a "right now" sense, but in a "that's that" kind of sense. 

I felt it was necessary to share this with A, and did not do a very good job of it.  I don't want A to NOT move on emotionally.  I want A to make that informed choice.  I know that A still has that spark for me (even though I have heard "I hate you" out of A's mouth more often than I care to count over the past 3 years).  I know that A wants to be with me.  But we have both changed, and there are so many things that I am NOT willing to live with and that I will NOT have my children having to live with (some of which A agrees with me on, especially about the kids), that are still such a big part of who A is at the moment.  And without that internal, driving emotive suite of feelings and reasons of WANTING to be with A, it seems futile and pointless for us to put our lives on hold any longer when I really, honestly and truly am done.

I am having a hard time trying to explain to A, heck I am having a hard time trying to explain it to myself in a way that makes the words make any sense.  How do I explain the finality of the emotions that I am having verses the slight hope that used to be there.  How can I say for certain that a spark could never grow again?  How could i say that there really is no hope?  I have used all of the words before that I use now, but it is what is behind them that is so different.  Words are such a horribly limited way to communicate...to express the subtle differences that truly make a huge difference.  I can't even find the words to explain it myself to my self, it is a knowing more than a feeling, more than a thought, more than anything easily subjective.  It is a knowing.....

1 comment:

Heather said...

just trying the comments tab to see if it will work for me, the blog author. It has been another insane evening with multiple times requesting A to leave my house and multiple refusals. I stayed calm and did not get drawn in to the angry word, accusations, and all the other nastiness, so I am proud of myself, though was told I was heartless and cruel, how else could I be so aloof when A was in so much pain. Alas I am also in pain, but my job is to sheild my kids from it as much as possible, which I was almost completely successful at tonight, reminding A that we both promised the kids a calm, gentle evening for them. Most of the nastiest comments came after they were in bed and I asked A again to leave, as the kids were in bed and there was no reason for A to be in my home.