Truth Time

So today on the way to work, I decided I could not take it another day. I told myself that I was going to talk to my personal lightning rod and find out how she really felt about who she was seeing. 

 When I got to work, there she was and I went to get coffee. I came out of the break room and almost froze but I decided it was now or never. I walked over and lay a note down on the desk asking if she had a few minutes to talk

So we get outside and she asked what’s up. this is it. I took a deep breath and told her this is not easy. Then I asked her one question. Do you love who you’re seeing now? She took a second to look at me and then said yes, so I said well there’s really nothing more to say but I owe you this.

 The truth is maybe I owed myself this. I told her how I’ve been torturing myself and needed to know if this was all in my head.   I looked her straight in the eye and said I fucking love you. I told her how I felt like it was kind of like I was Johnny Cash and she was June from the movie Walk the Line. I was ready to walk away from everything, then I asked her if she really really loved the person she was with. The answer was yes.

 I looked her in the eye and said okay and then we had a long hug. You might think I would be upset, or sad but I actually felt at peace. I felt lighter and I could breathe easier because of weight I’ve been carrying all of this time was gone.

 I started to get mad at myself for wasting so much energy on an illusion, At least part of the time it was. Then I realize that was pretty pointless to beat myself up after the fact. Next I thought about what kind of questions this raises about my life now and what I’m missing and what I can give.

 So I guess this closes this chapter. I have some serious thinking to do.

Torn Up

So since my last post, you would probably think I am “out of the woods” regarding my feelings with my personal lightening rod ( lets go with PLR from here on out), and on the road to a better marriage with improved communication.  Well, that is half true at best.  I’m a mess.

I don’t know if this is part of some kind of grieving process in letting someone go that you care about, but I have gotten emotional a couple of times this week thinking about this whole situation.  I laugh when I feel like it, but I don’t normally cry if I get upset.  I could not hold back the river thinking I may be letting go of the person who I was really made to be with.  Songs on the radio, or different things that draw my attention to her…she’s never far.

Now, part of me says this is all in my head.  After all, she is seeing someone, and they seem to be getting along well.  She started dating after we put some distance between us, or really because I said something because of how strongly I was feeling about her.  She is single and attractive, and I don’t blame her.  I just wonder if they are “happy together”, just like I’m “happy together”.  There is nothing I should complain about with my life.    After some tough conversations, things are better than they have been in months.

When I get to work, I feel like there is something missing from me.  I just do not have the same light in my eyes.  When I get home, I spend time torturing myself with things that remind me of her.  We have kind of a silent communication with song sharing.  The songs that have been shared lately are very divided.  They could go either way.

Did you ever see the movie “Walk the Line”, the Johnny Cash movie?  I feel as messed up as Johnny was over June when he was still married, but in love with her.  I remember the scene where he stumbles out of his house drunk, with his family watching as he literally walks out, and walks for hours until he reaches June’s house.  I feel like that drunk Johnny.  I am so torn up.

I see a life with my PLR, but is that all fantasy?? Am I just torturing myself over an illusion?  I’ve asked myself “What kind of man leaves a house with a wife and 2 kids?”  I would not desert them.  I would still be there financially and in any other capacity.  I know they would be fine with their mom and grandmother, but I can see the disappointment on everyone’s faces.  The chastising from other family members.  My wife’s dad’s spirit punching me when I get to the other side.  The financial drain.  I just know that from what I’ve seen I love, and I burn for my personal lightening rod.  Not in a sexual way, but in a giving your whole self kind of way.   Is this the same sentiment that inspired the song “Why do Fools Fall in Love?”  I am willing to be a fool for her love, and all the suffering would be worth it.

My wife tells me to do my best.  My personal lightening rod  inspires me to be my best.  You see the difference.  This goes against everything…except what my heart is telling me.  Oh, my twisted fucking heart…be true to me.  The truth is so stark and unforgiving.  Would I know truth if it hit me in the head like a piece of wood?  What do I have to offer?  This can’t be all one sided.  I sense that she is having trouble with this as well.  I feel like I need to take her by the hand and just ask if it is all in my head, but I have to be willing to let it all go if she says it’s for real.  The waiting is killing us, or at least it’s killing me.

 

 

I’m Not Angry, You’re Not Pissed

This post was started a couple of weeks ago, but when things seem to be going better, the writing is not the first activity on the priority list.  I only mention that because other posts that may be posted today or in the near future may not make sense. (Not that I make much sense most of the time)…So here goes…

Is everything going right? NO!  Are things horribly wrong? HARDLY!  In fact, the past couple of weeks, my wife and I have gotten along rather well.  So, why am I feeling like there is something lacking?  Like I’m trying to make something go right, and I’m not sure what the motivation or the reward is.

We had a night out without the kids..like the whole night.  We planned some of the evening, and left some open to interpretation.  At dinner, I wanted to ask my wife some questions to help learn who she is today. Rather than asking, I sat and thought about the time we were having and not wanting to “jinx” it.  I mean we were civil, but I remember sitting there at the table at one point and thinking “I suck, as a communicator.”  I also thought that if this was a first date we were going on, that there would not have been a second date, and I’m pretty sure the feeling was mutual at times.

As the night went on, we both loosened up a little.  With a good meal in us, we sauntered around downtown in a rush to go nowhere, and not really going anywhere.  Later in the evening, we were kind of debating what to do next.  We went through different options, but neither one of us was really excited about what the other was proposing.

We ended up at home less than an hour later.  I remember that as she turned on the TV, I thought “Is this what it has come to?  We have a whole night and house to ourselves with no kids, and we are going to watch a fucking movie?”  Well, we watched the movie.  She went up to bed.  I was a little sleepy-eyed, but hanging in there on the couch.  I saw a flash, like from a cell phone screen in the dark hallway.  A little while later I came to bed.  My wife looked asleep on her side.  I crawled in the sheets, and started unwinding.  I sleep on my side, so I rolled over, and as I took a quick breath, I saw my wife’s silhouette under the sheets.  Something struck me different.  Her shoulders were bare.  She normally has a tank top on.  Ok, so this isn’t a family channel, but all the same, I’ll spare the details.  Long story short, the night ended on a high note.

We also worked together well in a couple of different situations.  For example, the next morning, we walked into a restaurant that had been remodeled and are now serving alcohol.  Neither of us drink frequently, but we both decided seconds within walking in the front door that it was going to be bloody mary and mimosas with breakfast (at 2pm).  Also, my wife masterminded this event, and I went shopping with her for some of the things needed.  She commented on how productive the day had gone, like my being there made a difference.  I was even called on to “save the day” and we laughed about the circumstances.  My wife has initiated sex on a couple of occasions since our night out. We also finished a project together.  A decoration that my wife had been masterminding for months.  Ok, I haven’t used that word in the last 10 years, and I just used it twice in the same paragraph.  So what!  This AIN’T English class. We are acting more like partners, which believe it or not, is more important than the sex…but I still can’t live without it for very long.

On the flip side, my personal lightening rod, the person that unexpectedly came into my life and had the effect of turning it upside down, is seeing someone.  If this is the first post you’ve seen, I will have to mention that there was no love making of any kind involved.  Just someone who really seems to “get me”, and who I enjoy spending time with, which is pretty easy considering we work together.  It was this person that made me take to blogging for the first time to sort out my feelings, since I couldn’t really talk about them with anyone.

Maybe we came into each others’ lives to change our “mental positions”, or state of mind, just enough to be something else to someone else : me to my wife, and her so she could meet the person she appears to be very happy with now.  There is a side effect, which is the subject of my next post.

 

I Need a Partner

What is that “It” factor that draws two people together and makes them feel a bond? That invisible force that connects two hearts together?  Ah, that’s just for the young and dumb, right?  Some call it love, others maybe just a crush, and others may just call it temporary blindness.

Funny thing is that in the beginning, you don’t care what this person’s interests, likes or dislikes are.  You just want more of the feeling you get when you are in their presence.  This connection is personal, but it is also shared. Later on, you let your experiences with this person be colored by your own emotions, prejudices and personal biases.  That’s when the magic starts to fade.  Why do we sabotage this awesome thing?

Sometimes, it takes being in the company of others to realize what you have allowed to happen with your other half (substitute your own word here).  That is exactly what happened in my case.  I was woken up…shaken to the core by a “stranger” that came into my life.  Stripped down to nothing but my own personal truth, and lost in this wilderness of a feeling I haven’t experienced….well let’s just say in a very long time.  This never became a physical relationship, and the emotional side was never acknowledged by either of us, but it didn’t make it any less real.

This became an opportunity for me to examine my current relationship with my wife.  We had allowed ourselves to start bobbing along on autopilot, and forgetting the people we were when we started it all.  Don’t we owe it to ourselves to be happy?  To feel connected, so that we can handle the “better or worse”, “sickness and health”, etc.  After a long talk, my wife and I both made strides in our relationship, and how we felt about each other, but one talk does not changes years spent unspoken.

One day, the kids were in different places for an hour and a half.  Time that was well spent.  We also did some things together outside the house.  We actually shopped together and didn’t hate it.  We bought new bed sheets, for one.  Now, these haven’t actually been laundered and put on the bed yet, but when they do, they are going to have to go right back in the washer.  It’s just a rule.  You get a new piece of furniture, and it has to have a house welcoming.  New sheets-same thing.  Hmm, so why haven’t I gone sheet shopping in such a long time?  Won’t let that happen again, but I digress.

There is this spark of hope.  Hope that we can begin to do more than occupy the same space, share the same routines, stop airing the same grievances.  To be someone who matters to the other person.  This cannot be faked well.  My wife and I do not play games with how we feel.  For my wife, the experiences that happen as a family exceed anything that happens between the two of us.  For me, family is most important, but there can be no real family without two people who actually like each other, and enjoy each other’s company and share a connection.  I need to have time with my wife where we share laughs, and times we cry.  Times where when we’re away from each other we can’t wait to see each other.  People will always have their differences, and there will always be annoying quirks with any partner, but life is too short not to be happy together.

I really want to do the “reset” button, but only in the sense of getting to know who my wife is today.  I do not want to diminish or wipe away any history.  I just need some time where we can focus on US.  So far, this has been a challenge for my wife.  She says trying to pretend the past doesn’t exist is not possible, even though it’s just a short time.  We’re going out on a date, and I ask “What time do you want me to pick you up?”  Rather than naming a time or some other comment, she says “Don’t do that.”

Don’t do what?  Pretend that I want to get to know THE YOU OF TODAY?  My memories have not been erased like in the movie “Running Man”  Just play along.  Lighten up for a second.  I am accused of not having enough imagination at times.  Well, that is exactly what I am asking of you right now.

I have participated in some activities that have not been my first choice, but I did that for her.  So tonight, we are going out, and I think it is something we will both sincerely enjoy.  I’m actually excited, and have been all week.  The kids are both staying with someone, so we will have the entire night, and part of the next day.  Initially, I was torn between having an honest conversation to talk more, or just having a good time date night.  I have some other questions, and wanted to talk with her more about her needs, peeves, etc. and talk about my own.  I have chosen to just have a good time tonight.  I want to find out if there is or can be a connection between us.

You can do activities that you already enjoy with plenty of people, but you are not “allowed” to have a connection with any of them if you are married.  That is reserved for your spouse.  Well, if your spouse does not bring that into your life, then what’s the point?  Life is too short not to be happy.  We could go through life sharing experiences that can bring years of wonder, and provide dinner conversation for many years to come.  Problem is, hell, I could do that by myself.  I need a partner.

 

 

 

Water or Wood?

Your eyes looking into mine are like a magnifying glass

That focuses the sun into a tiny dot that first created an ember

Which grew into the wild fire that burns in my heart.

I am hypnotized into bringing more and more wood to the fire

Before I look around at the blaze, and being caught off guard at the size it has grown to.

Your connection feeds the fire.

I start throwing water at the flames.

At first, it all seems to turn straight to steam with no visible effect.

After a while, my restraint seems to begin to diminish the flames

But your connection makes me want to surrender and just let it burn up.

“Water or wood?”, that is the question.

Mutual Evolution

Getting lost…When I feel like there’s somewhere I need to be or am headed, there is no feeling I hate more than being lost.  I know where I’m going, and this temporary loss of direction is just a barrier to progress, and pisses me off.  There have been other times where I have tried to get lost on purpose.  Get away from anything that looks familiar, until I find a new place to just experience quiet or just to see something new.  Funny thing is, in either case, you are lost for some period of time before that moment of discovery where you realize – “WHERE THE HELL AM I?”.

If you stop paying close attention to the who, what, when, where, why in your life, it is easy to end up in some remote swamp in your life.  How far in will you get before you realize either “Where the hell am I?” or “Maybe I’m far enough down this road, and I need to start getting back to civilization!”?  Sometimes, you may be able to navigate back on your own, and other times you may need someone to rescue you from you.

So here I am, almost 50 years old.  Full of energy and vigor, but waking up to the fact that in some ways, I have been set on “auto pilot” and just cruising on a path that was set at some point.  All of the controls and indicators say I’m on course, so I’m flying along, but there’s the feeling that I WANT TO DRIVE.  Yeah, go ahead and call it mid-life crisis or whatever label you choose.  The fact is, it happens to people of all ages throughout their lives at various times.  Well, it’s great to want to drive, but in what direction, and to what end?  Well, you need a map and a mission, now don’t you?

So in my professional life, I have made a change, and found a much more meaningful place, which has made such a difference in my life.  I think it’s now time to turn my attention to my relationships, which starts with my relationship with myself.

My wife and I have known each other for over 20 years now.  I’m embarrassed to say that I know a lot more about what she used to like, and who she was in previous years than I do today.  Many young people think that couples who have been married for years and years know all the intimate details of each others’ lives: can order off the menu for their spouses and can make each other feel special in ways that no one else could.  Well sorry, but for many people, that is a pile of horse shit.  Why are so many people separating after 20 years or more of being together?  I think it is, in large part, because they don’t know who the hell they are next to anymore.  They are lost.  Once they realize this, they may want to get back to some new place together, or they may want to get away from each other as far and fast as possible.  At this point, I want to get to know my wife again.  I want to start over, and get reacquainted.

In my head, it is like dating.  How do you find out about what this “new” person likes?  When you first start dating someone, you don’t necessarily get to sleep with them on the first date.  This journey is going to be no different.  I want to know who this chic is.  If she wants a second date with me.  What her interests are, and if there are any interests that we share.   One thing I already know that real first-time daters do not know is differences, and triggers we both have that set us off.  I want to be aware of those, but not focus on those at the moment.

How can I make this fun without being weird?  It’s real simple.  I’m just gonna be myself, and ask questions.  I want to be able to say and do things that make her feel special.  Yesterday, she mentioned that the AC didn’t seem to be blowing as cool.  My first reaction in my head is “Crap!  How much is that gonna cost?  Can I fix that?.  Then it is an emotional drain added to all the other things I need to be focused on.

That is not the way I need to look at this.  Hypothetically, if this was a girl I liked, and was just getting to know, this would be a reason for me to come over and spend time with her.  The only thing I would care about is that time together.  Whether I can fix it or not is irrelevant.  I can just do everything that I can.  If I can fix it, she would be happy and we would probably spend more time together (maybe she’ll invite me to stay for dinner), and if not…well at least I tried, and she can start looking for a repair guy (In this case, she may turn to her guy friend=ME=to help her find someone reputable)  Now, I don’t say this because I think women are incapable of doing these things on their own-I KNOW BETTER.  I say it because I believe that most women would want to work together with their man.  I want a woman who appreciates me and what I do, and not just EXPECTS things to be done.  I want a woman who knows that there are limits to what I can do well, and what I cannot (and when I cannot do something well, does not rub the flaws in my face, unless it is an inside joke between the 2 of us)

My wife wants to go to a botanical garden.  First reaction in my head is”UUUUGGGHH!  I really do not care that much about flowers.  Maybe you and your mom or a friend should do this.  Can’t we go hiking or something?  What do you think about riding in a “drift car”?”  Now, I get impatient when I do things that I really didn’t want to do in the first place.  I realize I don’t need to like everything she likes, but I need to change my perspective.

If we just started dating, it would be like that Luke Bryan song “Play It Again”…Whatever your thinking, that’s what I’m thinking.  Tell me what you got in mind. So, if I want to be seen again by my wife, guess what.  I will be doing some things I don’t want to do because they make her happy.

The next thing is, I am going to suggest some things that I want to do, and see if we are able to make this change a “2 way street.”

In the end, we’re going to find out if being in each other’s company is more rewarding than enduring some things together (that may not be our own personal first-choice activities).  In other words, “Are we a good fit considering who we are as individuals today?”.

 

 

 

Thanks for Sharing

Well, it has been about a month since my first post here.  My mind was on  fire with the charms of a new friend, and I was trying to make sense of how I was feeling and put some perspective on things in my life and relationship with my wife.  On the way to work this week, I thought about how thankful I was for some of the perspectives that I found here, and from reading other people’s stories.  I would never have gotten that kind of keep insight otherwise.  The anonymity here allows people to speak openly and freely about the raw, unfiltered thoughts and emotions they are having.

One of the lessons I learned in my life is how much humility and gratitude can better your life, but you have to remind yourself of this from time to time to prevent yourself from becoming selfish and jaded.  That said, I feel like a lot of progress was made this month.  Things are better.  As the emotional climate leveled out, I realized that I still have a lot of work to do, but I just wanted to take a moment to be thankful, and some of you may have indirectly contributed this.