Ok. I lied. Did I really believe I was done “counting down” our sessions? Seriously, I need to know there’s an end in sight. I can’t just go about my days thinking I have to continue meeting up with this man once a week, for the rest of my life, to discuss our issues. Who wants to do that?
Right now I have a goal. If I can make it through these sessions, countdown to ZERO, I will have won. I don’t know how this will end, but it absolutely DOES need to END. Oh yeah, and the part about simply meeting to talk……puhlease. That was yet another cop-out, courtesy of me. If I don’t plan something, ANYTHING, it won’t continue to happen. We need a lesson, something a little more invigorating than just the two of us. I don’t do well with boredom. I definitely need change. Ask my opinion, my hubby should just be happy I haven’t yet decided to change partners. Then again, I guess he could be just as ready to trade me in as well.
Hmmm…..surprisingly I’m smiling. The thought, though scary to some, is invigorating to me. See if you can follow. I can’t stand the thought of being trapped. Getting married and simply staying married, settling for a life that just continues to happen, with me and my dreams watching and waving from the sidelines, is simply suffocating. But CHOOSING to stay married is different. Knowing that at any time we COULD choose differently, we COULD switch partners, we COULD walk away, yet we simply don’t want to, makes me feel like I’ve got the entire world and more right here in little old New Holland, Pa. Take away my freedom of choice, and bad things happen. It’s just a feeling really, but you have to know what I mean? Yes, no, maybe so?
From the beginning we’ve been clear. You don’t just get married, and “poof” that’s it. Yes, we slipped away, got distracted by life, and seemed to forget that for a while; but now we’re back. Hubby’s also always known……. I would NEVER, under any circumstance, EVER, leave my children. But I absolutely WOULD leave a man.
Now, if you’d like to skip ahead and read the letter, the one I wrote to HIM, go right ahead. This post got kinda long, more so than usual, and for that, I apologize. I’m not offended if you move ahead, you’ve been quite faithful and kind. If you do have time though, I think I’m worth the read. My neurosis is clear, documented and on display. My writing about it is only the tip of the iceberg.
Moving on, more lies? Ah yes, this one’s good. I claimed, and I quote, “I could honestly care less if my once fairly firm buttocks, hangs a little low as it wobbles to and fro”. Somebody please slap me. I’m not trying to grace the cover of Sports Illustrated or compete with anybody else’s concept of what’s considered beautiful or acceptable……..but consider this.
If your daughters, and let’s just say you have 2, one of whom happens to stand just about as tall as the underside of your backside, were to stand behind you, lifting and pushing your bottom up and down while laughing at it jiggle and drop………………..wouldn’t you reconsider your previous proclamation too?
How about if this was happening while you were on the phone, on a very important phone call, one you couldn’t simply interrupt or really let it be known your children were in the midst of torturing you, your body, and your self-esteem? Would you reconsider? Would you change your mind if you realized that your oversized whatever was actually providing unlimited entertainment for your obviously deranged children? You could say they did me a favor. You could also say, I didn’t really know how far it fallen, until they picked it back up.
Now, if you haven’t stood in front of the mirror lately, REALLY stood and examined yourself, please stop reading. You won’t understand, and I may scare you away. My intention is not to cause emotional harm to you, but rather release myself from the realization that life truly goes on, runs away you might say, while our bodies frantically scramble from behind playing a very intense game of catch-up.
How this happens? I don’t know. WHY this happens? My guess is our guides on the other side need some serious entertainment, so they throw us little curveballs now and again just to watch us squirm. Anything from unsightly age spots to a stray grey hair, curveballs must be designed to play with our minds, causing us to doubt ourselves and second guess our convictions. Yes, they’re laughing. We are all little pawns, simple pieces to their puzzle, participants in this heart-stopping game of cat and mouse. We are their ultimate reality show. I, for one, fall for their tricks every single time.
Let me explain. Just when I think I’ve accepted myself; it happens. Just when I believe I am open to change; it happens. Just when I think I understand, fully understand, the fact that I alone cannot stop the aging process; it happens. Someone, somewhere, puts an absolutely ridiculous, RIDICULOUS idea, picture, or concept into my tiny tortured brain. And then it snowballs.
Take for example, my full-length examination of myself in front of a very unforgiving, anything but useful, bedroom mirror. The previous owners put it there. I am convinced they are masochists. We already know my backside has fallen, I’m over it. What I didn’t know, was in addition to a sinking backend, my legs, front and back, have begun hatching teeny-tiny purple and blue, spider veins. Gasp. When I say “hatch”, I mean “hatch”…..like an entire litter or batch of mini-bugs, creepy crawly, insanely obnoxious bugs. On a good day, I’m pale. Today, I’m flat out pasty. You can imagine the contrast. You get the picture.
It’s quite understandable why I didn’t notice this earlier. You see, I just figured out how to shower and shave a couple weeks ago. My frontside, of course I know what I look like. My backside, look out. Who really looks at the back of themselves anyway?!? It’s seriously scary. I prefer to go back to my old, oblivious, naïve ways. But I fear, yes I fear, my corneas and self-esteem may now suffer from permanent, excuse the term, backlash.
I write this here, because I’ll never say it out loud. At least not in front of my girls. This stuff is meaningless, I know, I know, and I don’t ever want them to judge themselves by such standards. So that begs the question: why am I?
In addition to the spider veins, my ever changing body has blessed me with yet another side effect of moving up in this world. Uncontrollable gas. Yes, I said it. It seems anything I eat, immediately turns to churning, bursting, bubbly ick, and tortures my insides for hours on end. This is a major problem. I love to eat. That stupid Beano jingle keeps running through my head. Finally, let’s not forget, the colony of zits that has decided to erupt on my “why-is-this-happening-to-me” forehead. The Big-Dipper, plain as day, in clear form. Connect the dots, it is there.
Does this never stop? On the one hand, I’m moving up, being graced with the wonderful side-effects of celebrating another year of life. On the other, I’m reverting back to adolescence, being forced to deal with pimply, hormonal, teenage disgrace all over again. Tell me why? That’s all I ask.
I won’t even get into the stray hairs, NOT found on my head. Something called my “Polar” age, making me 10 years older than I actually am. Or the fact that my taste buds have gone haywire and apparently any and all deodorants now cease to work at eliminating my own personal stink. I am putrid.
I think I just figured out why it takes me so long between posts. It’s not that I’m lazy. It’s not that I’ve given up. It’s simply this: I’m a lot to take in. Even I need a break from myself.
Waking up and burning my eyes with visions of myself, put me in such a fervor for the rest of the day, it’s quite an accomplishment I emerged intact. Here’s how it went…….
After making myself some eggs, pouring a hot cup of coffee (yes I’m back on coffee, we all knew that would happen, right?), and clearing a spot at the crayon-cluttered, marker-painted dining room table, I sunk into my favorite seat. It happens to be the one seat that is not currently broken, but who cares? All I want to do is relax and enjoy my breakfast, the girls are fascinated by some ridiculously insane Yo-Gabba-Gabba show they’ve already seen a million times, and it’s actually quiet. Speaking of Yo-Gabba-Gabba, if you think you’ve got problems, simply tune in to them. Either they don’t permanently reside on this planet, or they’ve got some serious problems with a little thing we might call; ACID.
So back to breakfast. Are you a shy person? Don’t like to swear? Profanity not your thing? Wanna get over your inhibitions and release your inner sailor? Simply do this. Without looking, playing the absent-minded professor, take your shaker of ground cayenne pepper, and instead of sprinkling it on your scrambled eggs, dump it in your coffee. Oh, and then make sure you don’t realize it until it’s too late. That’s right, take a sip.
Then, when your daughter asks for a “cup of juice, please”, take her a string cheese. Listen to her whine for the next 20 minutes before you figure out she’s thirsty. Two days later you’ll also find the rotting, hardened cheese stuffed between your sofa cushions. Let’s not forget this is our 2nd set of living room furniture. The first? Well we had to get rid of it. You see, it seems we were sharing our house with another family. That’s right, a family of mice had made our sofa their home. Many nights I lay on that very sofa, hearing the mice, wondering where the hell they were coming from. We would search, coming up with nothing, until that fateful evening. When I realized I’d literally been sleeping with them for months on end, I almost threw up. I’m seriously gagging now. So please, little Darling, please. By all means leave your CHEESE between the cushions. What harm can that do?
Some may say I shouldn’t have ignored her whining for so long, I would’ve figured it out, found the cheese, and all would be well. I say, you can argue my methods to death. I’m convinced that most of our “rules”, regulations about how we should raise our children, were written by MEN. Most of those men, probably didn’t even have children.
So later in the evening when my husband asked me to bring him a thermometer and I took him a glass of wine, can anyone argue that I needed a break? Walking around aimlessly is one thing, but my early-morning-mirror-fest certainly led to an all day mental and emotional breakdown and stupor I wasn’t expecting. Do men even think about these things?
I had already decided that instead of therapy for the week, I was going to write my husband a letter. It’s often easier for me to put my feelings down on paper, rather than let them explode recklessly into the stratosphere. Plus, I already wrote myself that ridiculous “get over it” letter weeks before, didn’t he deserve something of a dose too?
Families work in mysterious ways though, and before I retreated to my computer to type the infamous letter, the funniest thing happened. Hubby went upstairs to change, and apparently our girls snuck up the steps and followed. Our house is small, when one person talks, everyone listens. Our youngest throws herself into hysterical fits of laughter, proclaiming “Daddy’s front-hiney looks funny, Daddy’s front-hiney looks funny!” The oldest coolly comes up behind her and says, “Oh, that’s just his ball-sac”. EXCUSE ME?!?!?!? Did she just say BALL-SAC? And did she actually know what it meant and what she was referring to???? Who taught her that?!? OH. MY. GAWD.
Needless to say, getting over my initial disbelief and shock, the mood for my day improved greatly. If you don’t find that funny, I don’t know what to say. Lighten up, perhaps?
To briefly explain, it seems our girls had been asking about our puppy’s “junk”, if you know what I mean, and my sometimes less-than-candid hubby told them all about his little peter and his ball-sac. Little did he know, children actually listen.
In the spirit of moving on, I decided to let this one go, after all ball-sacs are his territory, not mine. I had a letter to write. Here’s how it went.
There are so many things I’m thankful for. You have given me so much. However, before I get to the good stuff, there are a few things you need to know. You see, I’m working on forgiveness. I want to take the “higher ground”. I want to move on. So I have to let go.
Considering we’ve been together 10 years, I think I’ve earned the right to “let it all out”. If you want to find your recliner, do so now. Hands in pants? Fine by me. Get comfortable and then get to reading.
You know I’m committed to this marriage. You know I’m committed to us. I don’t want to end up divorced. I don’t want to be a statistic, but don’t let that delude you into feeling a false sense of security. You’ve done some things over the years that have just been hanging on my last nerve. I know I’ve done my own share of “things” too, but aren’t you lucky I’m the one writing and you’re the one reading? You get to hear all about yours and how they’ve annoyed me until I want to grind my head against our bumpy, rocky, sidewalk. I now get to put-it-to-you. Insignificant these issues may seem, but I assure you, they’re not.
Rest assured, our little Angel’s ball-sac dilemma, greatly lightened my mood. So while I may come off a bit sarcastic, I probably won’t be quite as mean or vindictive as I could have otherwise been. You should thank her. You gave her an anatomy lesson, and she surely saved your ass. This is the same little girl who doesn’t want to grow up because she absolutely positively does not want to wear “Mommy-Underpants”. Remarkable children we have.
While I’m on the subject of children, let me take you back approximately 3 ½ years. I remember it like it was yesterday. The labor, the pain, contractions and birth. No epidural, no drugs, no time. A ferocious hurricane-like-tsunami taking over my body, with little to do to stop it. Feeling like someone was trying to slowly, torturously, rip my body apart, while twisting, turning, and pulling every limb, all the while some anaconda-like beast was wrapping itself around my middle cutting off my air supply and deeming me helpless and weak. And oh yes, that’s right. I had to be fearless and strong. Yes, I remember.
You know what else I remember? I remember writhing in pain, pulling you close, asking quite deliriously for your help. Do you know what you did? You removed my painfully clenched fists from your sweatshirt, and placed them on your bare wrists. Big deal, right? Big deal, YES. You carefully and methodically told me to hold onto YOU, so I wouldn’t STRETCH OUT YOUR SWEATSHIRT. Seriously, Dude?
Excuse me while I say what I’m ever-so-carefully about to say. I cannot even begin to agree that your SWEATSHIRT even remotely comes close to holding a candle to the STRETCHING, PUSHING, PULLING, oh hell, complete and utter annihilation of my uhhhhh, VAGINA. You can’t possibly be that clueless. Now please, Honey. Take your time. Go back and reread those last 2 paragraphs at least 3 more times. From my experience, it takes that long before you actually HEAR what you agree to and what I say. Third time’s a charm, right?
While we’re on the 3rd time, so to speak, let’s get back to that topic of birthing, babies, and children. You’ve let it be known, you’re happy with two. I’m happy as well. We’ve talked, we’ve debated, we’ve covered this whole child-rearing thing to death. You know I love our girls and they are enough. While I don’t feel anything’s missing, I do feel there’s another little soul out there waiting for us. Maybe only another mother could fully understand, I don’t know. I don’t fault you for holding back. The decision to have one more, just one more, needs to be made by us both.
Here’s my problem. You’ve taken this stance for years, YEARS. I’ve convinced myself that I accept it. In fact, I gave away ALL our stuff, EVERY LAST PIECE of baby equipment and STUFF, to the Purple Heart Organization. You helped load the truck. I’ve released the thought, I’ve let go. Enter, YOU. So how dare you randomly arrive home from work one day to let me know that if we ever have another baby, you know exactly what you want to name it. At the risk of repeating myself, let me say it again, “Seriously, Dude?”
Do you have any idea what this does to my head? Even my friends and followers know enough about me by now to know you should never, EVER, send such ridiculously mixed signals to my frail and fragile mind. You’ve named our final child. The one you say you don’t want to have. Even though you’re done, you take the time to think about it. Intimately. You’re just as deranged as me. Perhaps we really do make the perfect couple.
Oh, yeah. And that phantom child, the one we may or may not have? If this mystery not-gonna-happen, already-picked-out-the-name baby, ever actually does exist, let’s get one thing straight. If you ever, EVER, have the nerve to walk in the door again, after an extra-long day of work and absence, and have the audacity to let me know I’m breastfeeding WRONG and how I should change my method and position; please turn around and walk right back out. The first time I was so shocked, exhausted, and stupefied to do anything worth talking about. But if it happens again? Let me be blunt. I WILL cut off your penis. If I’m feeling extra feisty that day, I may even hang it from your rear-view mirror. A constant reminder of your not-so-manly-anymore, “no-you-DON’T-know it all” past, present, & future status.
Another thing I’d like to discuss. You know me, right? You also know my time on the computer is sacred, correct? So why, WHY, do you insist on using the bathroom located just inside the office, directly beside my computer, at exactly the same time I decide to sit down behind my keypad? A better question arises with this: Why then do you insist on keeping the door open, while attempting to hold thought-provoking conversations with me, and engaging in quite utterly disgusting human indignities at exactly the same time? Do you want to repulse me? Is that your goal? We have a perfectly good and working bathroom located at the top of our steps. March your ass up there and let it retire behind closed and quiet doors….please. I’m not too proud to actually beg, and this time, I AM.
Speaking of repulsion; don’t you love how I so seamlessly move from one topic to the next? Yes, I’m alive. I’m quite healthy and my female parts seem to be in working order. I do like sex. But just for the record, intensely STARING at me while I anything-but-seductively maneuver myself into my soft and cuddly jammies, is NOT considered foreplay. In fact, it’s down-right creepy. Touch me, don’t maul me. Kiss me, don’t devour me. Understand? Enough said.
And…………Take the tree that falls in the middle of the uninhabited forest with nobody hearing it go down, it still DOES make a sound. Just like when you pick a booger and you flick it down, even if I’m not around; it still happened, it still resides on the ground, most likely OUR ground, our FLOOR, in our HOUSE. I’m now gagging (again), readers are gagging, you’re probably laughing. I can’t take it anymore. Boogers, toenails, and disgusting phlem, each have their own final resting place in this world. Figure out the proper place for each, and take care of it, please.
If I do your laundry, I’m allowed to wear your socks. Don’t bring it up again. If you willingly wipe crumbs on the floor, I’ll sweep them up. Then I’ll put them on your pillow or in your underwear drawer, in your socks, or on your side of the bed. You’ll never know where, and I’ll delight in the fact that I’m quite literally making you squirm.
I’ve got a lot of tricks up my sleeve, and I will revert to scare tactics, manipulation, and pain to get my way. You are a good husband, but you could always be better. Aren’t you glad my parents taught me to persevere, to never give up, to always expect the BEST? Yes, Sir, I do. Yes, Sir, even from YOU.
Now Honey, don’t fret. You have some wonderful qualities too. I started my day feeling battered and bruised, that mirror really did a number on my psyche. Did I, in turn, do a number on you? Aren’t we striving for a partnership? Equality, common ground? If one gets knocked around, we have to level the playing field, right? I can’t be feeling all tattered and torn, while you go on believing you’re just and adored. I had to. I had to. I evened the score.
Lucky for you, I’ll stop playing Dr. Seuss. I’ve relaxed, I’m breathing deep, I’m putting my life, our life into perspective, and so I now realize. These are the things that make up a marriage. No, we weren’t prepared. No, you can never really be ready. Yes, I can learn to laugh a little more. Yes, you can learn to respect my obsessive-compulsive, ridiculous, often makes-no-sense-at-all ways. We’ll still survive. In spite of everything, boogers and all, these last 10 years together have strengthened our bond. We’ve been pulled in all directions, yet we always seem to snap back in place. We snap back together. Snap. Crackle. Pop. Rice Krispies. There’s no need to write that, but I’m leaving it there. My companion voice won’t stop singing it, (what is it with me and jingles today?) and I am hoping, just hoping, that if I put it on paper, it’ll stay outta my head. You know me, Dear. It doesn’t always make sense, but it does make “me”.
So I’m thankful you’re my husband. Really, I am. If not for you, what would I possibly have to write about? You see, for me, journaling is therapy. In a round-about way, you’ve given me everything I need, idiocy and all, to make my life complete. Without you, my journal and life wouldn’t be nearly as interesting, CHALLENGING, or fun. Thanks.
Thanks also for your Saturday morning donut runs. No, it’s not good for our waistlines, but it’s sure to be good for the memories. While the girls and I sleep, you think you’re so quiet, you think you’re so smooth. We know what you’re doing, we expect it by now, but we act surprised every time. As the girls awake groggy, puffy-eyed and forlorn, when they realize it’s Saturday and Daddy “snuck” out for their favorite treats, their eyes couldn’t shine any brighter. It melts my heart every time. I love that you get just the right kind for me. I love that you always bring two.
Thank you for cleaning my car. When it snows, when it’s dreadful, when you know I won’t leave enough time, even if you don’t know if I have anywhere to go. When I walk outside to find my windshield sparkling and new, it reminds me that you care. That in your hurry and rush, you still think of me first. After all this time, you certainly know I tend to fly by the seat of my pants and without your assistance I might never fully arrive.
Thanks for changing my screensaver. A simple surprise you might say. As I spiraled down into the seemingly bottomless pit of Winter, I awoke to the beautiful ocean, whales dancing in the background, assuring me all would be okay. These are things no one else understands. But you did it for me. And I love you for that.
Finally, though there is more, I need to wrap this session up, as my fingers are cramped and my toes are now numb. Thank you for still considering me “one of your girls”. Not in a controlling, possessive kind of way, but rather a loving and affectionate nod of respect kind of way. You probably don’t even know what I’m talking about. But I heard you. I HEARD you. Nondescript evening, family at the Rec. My energy waning, I needed a lift. I stayed back, then he approached you and asked, “Are your girls here tonight?” A simple question from a simple friend. You gave me just what I needed to hear. “Yes”, you said. “They’re playing in the kid’s room and my wife’s over there.” You turned to find me and waved. I’m still your girl. To him, I’m not one of your girls, but to you, I AM. And I heard you.
These are the little things that really do make a big difference. These are the things that make a marriage work. Yes, I’m still your girl. I hope you’ll always be my Guy. We’ve got some work to do, but thanks for coming along for the ride.
I’ve now spilled my heart, objectionable content and all. I don’t know what he said, I fell asleep before he finished reading. Ahhhh, the gift of gab. Whoever slapped me earlier, please now shut me up.
Are you tired, do your eyes burn? Have you fallen asleep too? Once again, my apologies for the length, but thanks be to all who have stuck around. You too are along for the ride, and I appreciate all of you.
So back to the spirit of my original goal, 10 Sessions Down, 17 To Go! We’ve hit double digits, the world is our oyster, look out below! Until next time………………..