Artistic rendering done in PSE 8 using some filter. I'm really making great use of my time this week, while waiting for my new hard drive to be installed, which apparently won't be possible until next Monday. Lord, help me.
I thought I'd talk about how things are going with me and Dan.
I've touched on it here and there and there, and honestly, it's a bit unusual for me to not have talked about it more, considering how much working on my marriage has dominated the past two-and-a-half years of my life.
Part of it was to preserve some privacy; part of it was because I knew for a fact that I didn't have all the answers—and still don't; and part of it was because I wasn't in a place where I could vouch for the effects of therapy.
Today, I feel differently.
Last week, I was dusting in my family room and I was overcome with this thought: I don't ever want to live my life without Dan in it.
I shared this with him and it made us both a bit weepy. Not for the simple note of sentimentality invoked, but for the truth of just how hard what we have been trying to do is: that being save our union.
I realized, as I was dusting our super-sized TV, one that we bought when we were on much less solid ground, that there have been moments where I wondered if I shouldn't just take this journey alone. I have rambled on about this on more than one occasion to my therapist, who now loves to remind me, and in a somewhat mocking tone, how I once thought: to hell with him, I can do better on my own.
But today, I know better.
This process has been so much more about me and who I've been in this marriage (and to a larger extent, in this family and in this world) than who does what around the house. Or who doesn't ask me how my day was. Or who is wrong or right on just about everything.
It's been about redefining what kind of person I want to be.
Do I want to be a judgmental, evaulative person who tries to control life? Or do I want to be loving, warm and wise and one who seeks to figure out what life is offering up and respond accordingly?
Do I want to be right? Or do I want to see what is actually true, regardless of whether or not there is pain in the truth? (And I'm learning that there always is.)
This might sound like therapy mumbo jumbo, but it's mumbo jumbo that has reminded me how much I love my partner in crime, and how much I've nearly thrown away because of who I have been.
For the first time since we started working on this, I feel like we are out of the woods.
Does it mean that the work is over? No. It's not. I'm trying to rewire my responses to life on every level.
People are noticing, and by people I mean the three that I presently live with.
Like the other day when Aidan told me my calm response to the death of my computer was proof to her that the therapy was working.
That level of acknowledgement means everything to me.
I know that not every couple is going to stay together, nor should they. That's life. And that's truth.
But I know that if there is a kernel worth exploring, then there might just be a chance to make it through the forest and see what's on the other side.
And I know that some of that journey is going to involve a lot of self-examination and that it's not fun and it's not pretty or sexy. In fact at times, it's going to make you run in the other direction.
I've made a lot of about faces in the past few years.
I'm looking down the barrel of 21 years of marriage next month.
And I'm extremely grateful for that opportunity.