Sunday, February 26, 2012

A Long Week

The roosting nest that hangs in the hedge next to the walk that leads to the porch has come apart. The top part is still attached to a branch, and the bottom part has wedged itself into a section of the bottom of the hedge below. All winter long I have watched, from the large window in my kitchen that is above the heater, and have waited, wondering if the winds will release it from it's wedged location and send it sailing off to parts unknown. The roosting nest that hangs in the back yard, in the section of Choke Cherry trees next to the Town Hall lost its hanger last spring.  Over the summer I gave it a new bit of rope and hung it in a spot I can see it from this chair as I sit and type, blowing in the strong winds that we have been experiencing these past few days. I have watched as the birds have slowly returned to the yard. I think about how I should replace those roosting nests with news ones. How I should go out and fill the feeders and the suet holders. I wonder if we are due for a wallop of winter during March, or if spring will sneak in slowly and winter will have been a wash this year.

I have spent a lot of time staring out these windows this past week. We have been on winter break from school, which has been a saving grace. I haven't had to put on my "I'm fine" mask and pretend that everything is OK when quite clearly it is not.  It has been a rather difficult week. One of those weeks where you have to wonder if you are going to come out on the other side of it in one piece. For a few days, I wasn't sure. In the wee hours of Tuesday morning, after the rest of the house had gone to bed, I sat here in this same chair and hashed it all out in my heart. For several long hours I wondered if I was strong enough to keep doing this. If I could keep going the way we have been going. I searched my heart, and I cried and I wrote. Page, after page, tears dripping on the lines and blurring the words. I wrote until there was nothing left to say, and my eyes couldn't focus on the page anymore. I left the letter under his work cell phone,  and then I went and tried to sleep on the couch.

There have been some long, and tearful talks since then. You can't expect something that has taken years to break, and expect it to be fixed overnight after some long talks and a few days of "trying to be better". He might be guilty of this behavior, and it causes me a lot of frustration. My heart is still raw, and sad, and I'd be lying if I said I'm not scared that it's too late. But I promised that I wasn't ready to quit yet. That I was willing to try and make it work, but that I was tired of being the only one doing all the work and he had to step up. Now I can only wait.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Bravery in the Dark

It seemed like a good plan at the time. Work on having a better attitude about the whole communication thing, and things might get better.  Try and change my perspective on the situation and perhaps it wouldn't bother me so much. In hindsight, I really don't know what I was thinking. It appears that I was trying to do what I hate, putting a band-aid on a gunshot wound. In reality, I was setting myself up for complete and utter failure, I just couldn't see it at the time. Instead, the entire thing fell apart. I really shouldn't be surprised, because it was a bad plan from the start. I just couldn't see it.

Instead, I have spent these past few early mornings, and I do mean early (think wee hours), having some hard conversations. There's something about the cover of darkness that makes you brave enough to ask the hard questions. Or maybe it's because you can hide the pain on your own face, or because in the dark they can't look into your eyes and see right into your very soul. Or, if you are like me, and wear your emotions like a banner for the whole world to see, the dark offers a protective barrier. Whatever the reason, there has been some conversation happening in the early morning hours, in the quiet of our bedroom these past few days. Hard questions have been asked. Tears have been shed. Long silences have spoken when words couldn't. It wasn't what I had planned for, but it has been far more necessary.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Comfortable Like an Old Shirt

We rode back from the High School in silence. Music is the only sound that fills our car these days, unless I've taken the initiative and started to talk about whatever random things are on my mind. Today I wasn't in the mood. It was almost noon, and barely a dozen words had been exchanged between us all day. My heart was heavy, and sad as I stared out the window at the houses we past and the bare, winter landscape. The majority of the snow we have gotten this winter fell back in October, and everything looks grey and dreary, which wasn't helping my mood any.

I couldn't help but notice how easy it was for him to talk to the people that he works with. How quickly he could answer questions, or laugh, or joke with people about the budget or school things or stuff that had to do with our jobs as educators. How he could go on and on about the network or this or that thing about what he does during his day. Things that he is obviously passionate about. Which is what I was thinking about on the way home. If he can talk that easily to other people about things he is passionate about, maybe he's not passionate about me anymore. Maybe I'm just a comfortable part of his life, that he loves (I don't question that), and nothing more.

I couldn't say any of this to him in the car on the way home though. There was too much hurt and sadness in my heart, and I have learned a lot about myself these past few weeks as I have done a lot of soul searching into my life. When I get cranky, and surly, and lash out with crankiness and criticisms, it's not always driven by anger.  In fact, I'd say a good majority of the time it's not. It's usually fueled by hurt, and when I am hurting, I've noticed that I lash out at others in anger. It was a bit of an eye opener to discover that, and humbling as well. That's not a personality trait I'm proud of, and I'm not sure what to do with or about it. Today I chose to stay silent. Three more hours have gone by, and maybe a dozen more words have crossed our lips and I don't know what to make of any of it.

Thursday, February 09, 2012

When Actions Speak Louder than Words

One of the great sadness' of my marriage is the lack of communication that exists between The Boy™ and I. When I first met him, he was very shy and quiet. In fact I think it took several months of getting to know him before discovering that he had quite a sense of humor and could tell a good story when he wanted to. When we would go out to eat with our group of friends, he would just sit there, listening, and laughing, only contributing to the conversations when questions were directed at him. When we spent time together, I talked enough to make up for the both of us, and didn't really realize that none of the conversations were initiated by him. It is who he is, and it was something I failed to consider would ever become a larger issue later on down the road.

I have blogged about it before, most recently back in the summer, here, and don't feel the need to hash it all out again. What I do want to talk about, is how, during the month of February, I am going to work on how I handle all of this in a better way than I have been. In the earlier part of our marriage, I was too busy taking care of small children to really pay attention to the fact that we had a communication problem. We had plenty to talk about that surrounded the kids and what was going on with them. Also, during that time, he was working crazy hours, and I was a young, stressed out stay at home mom and we might've done a lot of fighting. It was a rocky time in our marriage and there may have been times when we didn't communicate well at all. I'm not proud of it, but I'm not going to sugar coat over it either. It's hard being a young parent, and we are able now to look back on that time in our lives, reflect on where we have been, and how far we have come and I like to think that it has made us both better parents and better spouses, but who really knows in the end.

Saturday, February 04, 2012

On Slowing Down

For longer that I would like to admit, out loud to others, or even to myself, there has been a huge sadness in my life that I haven't been able to shake. I'm able to ignore it, for a time. To fill my days with work, and with chores and with activities involving the kids that keep me busy until it's time to settle in for some mindless TV or computer work at the end of the day and then head to bed. I have more hobbies than I currently have time to pursue, even though I enjoy all of them equally as well as the others. They were started over the years as something that was new and exciting and that would bring a bit of something extra that I felt was missing, each one serving it's necessary purpose at whatever point I was in during that time. I have practiced Yoga, and Pilates, for both the physical benefits to my tight and stressed out body, and the mental release that they provide when I am finished. I bought snowshoes to escape the feeling of being housebound in the winter, a bike to offset the days that I don't run, and I began running as an escape from a situation in my marriage that was making me feel ugly and miserable.

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

All in Good Time

As the blog has been quiet these past few weeks, so I have been quiet as well. I have been taking a long, hard look at some areas in my life that haven't been working well for a long time now. When I chose REVIVE as my word for 2012, I knew that it wasn't going to be an easy word, or an easy year. Coming off of the year that I just have, "there is a lot that needs fixin' " as the saying goes. Instead of jumping in whole hog with all of the things on the list, or even making a list at all, because really.. that would depress the heck out of me, I decided early on that I was going to focus on one thing each month.