Thursday, April 28, 2011

Knowing You're in Trouble

I know I'm in trouble when I don't write in a journal or a blog or random pieces of paper in church.

I know I'm in trouble when I find myself thinking... uh-oh! I should be writing this down.

I know I'm in trouble when I hide even from myself.

I know I'm in trouble when a friend asks, "Do you love him?" and you don't know how to begin to know how to answer that question.

How can I know so little about what love should feel like? I know it's not passion, because passion means self annihilation. I know it's something to do with respect and appreciation and gratefulness that I can be small and vulnerable and loving and he will be there to feel it and be grateful in return.

The truth is, in the absence of family pattern, I don't know much about love. I know it's a verb not a noun, and that I haven't been doing it much lately. As a friend said once, it doesn't help to do jumping jacks to get a blind man's attention. For the same reason, I just haven't been doing much to get my work-addict husband's attention. His love seems to have nothing to do with me or with how connected I feel. He wakes up and loves me, goes to bed and loves me. In between, I don't think I much enter his thoughts.

And me? I just feel ... like I don't rate. I feel thin and tensile and hollow. High-pitched and vibrating before the break comes.

I'm far away and heading farther unless I see that he sees how far I am. And cares.

A pause for a moment while I read this last line to be sure I'm still talking about who I'm talking about. All of this has echoes of childhood, for sure.

I want to feel I have a partner who's working some fair percent as hard as I am. Who sees and feels that far away is a problem. I want to stop doing jumping jacks and hand over the pencil to keep the to-do list.

I want someone with spirit and imagination and engagement with the non-business world. Someone with friends who love him and commitments to those he loves.

For myself, I want to stop keeping a tally of what I do vs. all that he doesn't. I want to love him more than resent him. I want to let go of SOMETHING if it will mean feeling closer and more in love.

Who writes poems about this stuff?

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